Donna Anita Nikolaisen is an Irish Stage, Screen and Voice Actor. Her breakthrough role came as Zambian refugee Ama Chisenga in Ireland’s longest running TV Drama Fair City from 2013 to 2017. In 2018 Donna won a Best Supporting Actor award at the Dublin Underground Cinema Festival for her role as ‘Ali’ in the award winning short QED. She appears as Lucy in Conversations with Friends (2022); Paige Monaghan in Hallmark’s Christmas at Castle Hart (2021); Frances Frond in CBBC’s Nova Jones (2021); Lucy in The South Westerlies (2020); Grace Ture in Feature Film Sweetness in the Belly (2020); Other TV/Film credits include Blood, Dublin Murders, Royally Ever After and The Last Right. She was trained at The Focus Theatre, Bel Canto School of Voice and The Montfort School of Performing Arts (LAMDA). On stage highlights include Tea Chests and Dreams at The Axis, No Irish No Blacks No Dogs at The New Theatre, Jane Eyre at The Gate, Talking to Terrorists at The Samuel Beckett and The Bacchae of Baghdad at The Abbey. She is represented by Byron’s Management.
As an established voice over artist Donna voices roles for animation, radio plays and commercials. She narrates audiobooks – Strange Flowers; The Coincidence; Reclaiming. She also narrates documentaries The Story of Water (Virgin Media) and Ireland’s Refugee Hotel (BBC/RTE). Donna is currently voicing a main role in an international pre-sold children’s animation TV series, scheduled for release in 2023. She is represented by Voice Bank.
Born in Dublin, Donna is of Irish Caribbean heritage. Brought up in Cork by her adopted parents, Anita and Kurt Nikolaisen, she comes from a wonderfully diverse family. From an early age the stage called to her. Her debut performance was a showcase for The Montfort School of Performing Arts at the famous Cork Cat Club. After graduating from UCC with a BSc Business Information Systems, she moved to Dublin and worked in the IT sector, which lead her to set up Visual Aspects Web Design Studio. Around that time she also began training her voice at Bel Canto School of Voice and attending The Focus Theatre Stanislavsky Studio. Early roles include Bloody Mary in The Pioneer Society’s South Pacific at The Helix and Margaret in Much Ado About Nothing with The Dublin Shakespeare Society at Theatre@36. From this springboard she began booking exciting roles in Theatre, TV and Film. Each new role leading her towards an enriching career in Acting and Voice.
Acting for Camera, Film Venture
Stanislavsky Studio, The Focus Theatre, Tim McDonnell
LAMDA Speech & Drama, Montfort College of Performing Arts
Chekhov, Rayla Tadjimotova
Grotowski, Jason Byrne
Viewpoints, Joe Devlin
Bel Canto Voice, Bel Canto School of Voice
Music Theatre and Classical Voice, Waltons School of Music
Voice, Andy Hinds
Contemporary Dance, CoisCéim Dance Theatre
Jazz Ballet, Elena Degtyareva
Hip Hop, Jane Shorthall