DAWN Sievewright is the last person you’d expect to break down on stage.

She’s the person most unlikely to produce cascades of uncontrollable tears while heaving sobs so hard she almost choked.

The actress is as non-compromising as they come.

She’s five feet-four inches of open defiance of the stereotype of gentle, tea-with-your-auntie leafy Bishopbriggs where she grew up.

This is a performer who has been cast in a series of tough-girl roles over the years, from the gallus Glasgow Girls to the world-storming Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour, in which she played the feisty Fionnula.

Her natural directness saw acclaimed director John Tiffany recreate the role of Lamplight in the West End production of Pinocchio for her, recognising Sievewright’s ability to slay an audience with comedic bravado and a killer line.

So why the greetin’, Dawn? Where’s the tough young woman who left home at 16 for acting college in London?

Sievewright’s explanation for the emotional crash offers real insight into the trials of performance life.

To offer context, the Scots actress was on stage for the final performance of Our Ladies, the tale of six Catholic choir-girls’ day out which begins in Edinburgh – and ends up in Gomorrah.

“I just broke down and cried,” she says. “I was heaving and sobbing so hard I couldn’t even speak. I was actually shaking.”

What had gone wrong? Well, nothing. What was happening in the final minutes of the final show on London’s West End in September 2017 was a realisation it was all over.

After spending three years with the same group of people, living out of a suitcase, out of each other’s pockets, travelling across the globe with the NTS production, it was done. “I found it really hard to deal with that,” she admits.

“It was the closing of a chapter in my life and how do you cope with that?”

Well, you cry a lot – then look back and rejoice. And you form a WhatsApp group with the other performers and vow to stay friends for life. And you move on.

However Sievewright’s final moments on stage suggest she has an IMF-sized bank of emotions to call upon for a range of roles.

In recent months the actress has commanded the Lyceum stage in Twelfth Night, her first ever Shakespeare, playing male character Toby Welch as a woman.

“It was tough,” she says of the stint.

“I was working on My Left/Right Foot at night (the National Theatre of Scotland production) while rehearsing Shakespeare during the day.”

She smiles; “Shakespeare really involves learning a different language, and Toby has the most lines in the play. But it was amazing to do it and my first classical piece since leaving drama school.”

Sievewright studied at the Guildford School of Acting but her mum, a dance teacher, taught her technique.

“For me, acting is also about gut and the passion. I’m pretty rough around the edges in my life, but when people come to see me they get the full performance.”

That level of performance will be evident this week when she plays Daisy in Andy McGregor’s (very) dark comedy, Spuds. Described as “Breaking Bad with chip fat”, it tells the tale of David MacGonigle, who, when his wife dies, sees his perfect middle-class life collapse around him.

But one night he spills his special type of Iron Brew onto his chips.

And the result is Spuds, a new designer drug.

Sievewright plays his daughter, Daisy. “She’s that West End teenager who is a smiley, whiney and moany butter-wouldn’t-melt-in her-mouth type.

“You think she’s harmless – but then you discover there’s a lot more going on.”

The actress adds, laughing; “Daisy isn’t me at all. My heart is on my sleeve.”

There is little doubt television will one day capture Sievewright. But for the moment, the stage is her love.

“The instant gratification, the chance to b***** it up and go back and do it right. I love the graft and the feel of it,” she says in excited voice.

The real challenge for the moment in playing Daisy is working alongside old pal Darren Brownlie.

“Darren was a couple of years above me at the Dance School in Knightswood. He’s one of my closest friends, and now we’re working together. And I’m an Oran Mor virgin. But you know he makes me laugh so much I’m having to work hard not to smile.”

The need to avoid corpsing apart, the actress admits her real life challenge is finding a flat to buy in Glasgow.

“I’ve bid on three flats but not landed one yet,” she says of her hunt in the south side.

“ I’m 31. I want my own wee place.”

The actress has cried enough for the itinerant life she once wallowed in.

“I love the variety and change in the business, of marching to the beat of someone else’s drum,” she says, grinning.

“I love the fact the job can take you anywhere, and that Our Ladies opened so many doors for me.”

She breaks into a full-blown laugh.

“But I’ve had enough of suitcase life. I need somewhere to keep my tat.”

Spuds also stars Darren Brownlie and Richard Conlon, Oran Mor, Glasgow, until Saturday.