'That's how I got the ME virus': Martine McCutcheon blames pressure of My Fair Lady role and hectic work schedule for giving her chronic illness
Her world came crashing down when she was diagnosed with chronic illness ME in 2011 - and Martine McCutcheon talked about the effect on her life on Thursday.
In an interview with Loose Women, the 40-year-old revealed she blames the pressures of her role in West End show My Fair Lady back in 2001, coupled with a hectic lifestyle for making her fall ill.
She said: 'It was a real pressure especially on matinee days and then as well as shoots and relationships, and I think that’s why I got ME.
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Fighting back: Martine McCutcheon told Loose Women on Thursday that she blames the pressure of her My Fair Lady role and hectic work schedule for giving her chronic illness ME
She said: 'It was a real pressure especially on matinee days and then as well as shoots and relationships, and I think that’s why I got ME' - pictured in 2001
'I got a virus, infections and I don’t think anything else would have stopped me but that.
She added: 'It stopped me in my tracks. It was horrible. I’ve learnt a lot. But still now I’m here going "Should I be here?".
'But now instead of back then, there’s another voice saying "Yes, yes you should"!'
She added: 'It stopped me in my tracks. It was horrible. I’ve learnt a lot. But still now I’m here going "Should I be here?"'
She said: 'I got a virus, infections and I don’t think anything else would have stopped me but that'
The chronic fatigue syndrome meant that mother-of-one Martine was confined to a wheelchair, sank into a depression and stayed at home for a month as she didn't want to see anyone.
Martine was named Best Actress in a musical at the Laurence Olivier awards at the time despite being criticised for near-constant absenteeism.
But she told the Loose Women she was a 'workaholic' who 'couldn't address her problems until she got ill with ME.'
On the mend now: The chronic fatigue syndrome meant that mother-of-one Martine was confined to a wheelchair, sank into a depression and stayed at home for a month
My Fair Lady's producer Sir Cameron Mackintosh previously spoke out and said:
'She'd be hysterical, beating herself up and saying, "It wasn't perfect, it wasn't perfect." You'd go back and say, "It was terrific, listen to the audience"
She said: 'I became a complete workaholic, I went to work and then I’d go to some shuzzy do, and I tried to escape.
'Around the time of My Fair Lady, everything was perfect and I just got ill and it all fell apart for me.'
Stunner: Martine looked incredible in a maroon frilly top worn with leather trousers and heels - she flashed a foot inking as she posed for snaps backstage
While Janet Street Porter commended her on her performance, Ruth Langsford said she too has become ill in the past from overworking.
She said: 'I had it in a different way, I got it through glandular fever. I’ve become a lot more protective of my private time.
'I know now that work is work. You think everyone expects it of you .'
Martine concluded: 'You think you can do it all, but all you do is hurt yourself. It all did and then I was a wreck.'
Phew! Thankfully things are going well for Martine now and she is fighting fit
Good pals: Janet Street Porter told her she enjoyed watching her performance in My Fair Lady back in the day - she won a Best Actress gong at the Olivier Awards for her role
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