A BUDDING star of the West End is on the yellow brick road to success after landing a role in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s production of The Wizard of Oz.

Ava Merson-O’Brien impressed a panel including former Strictly Come Dancing judge Arlene Phillips to secure the role of a Munchkin in the legendary composer Lloyd Webber’s production of the Oscar-winning and iconic 1939 movie.

The nine-year-old will appear in the show at the London Palladium alongside Danielle Hope, winner of BBC's Over The Rainbow show, in the lead as Dorothy, and Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em star Michael Crawford, who will play the Wizard.

Ava, who lives in Fence, beat hundreds of other youngsters to be cast as a Munchkin, which are depicted in the film as dwarf-like creatures who dress in brightly-coloured clothes and reside in the fictional Munchkin Country.

Her mum Krysia Merson, who is also an actress, said: “It’s absolutely fantastic because there were so many kids who went for it.

“She’s very excited, especially because we used to watch the Over the Rainbow programme together on Saturday nights.

“Also, she’s looking forward to it because it’s at the Palladium which is such an iconic theatre.”

Ava is no stranger to success, having earlier this year played the part of Eponine in Les Miserables, the world’s longest running musical, at the Manchester Palace Theatre.

It will be the fourth time the talented singer, dancer and actress has featured a production in London’s West End.

She also recorded a voiceover which was heard in the Hollywood film, Tim Burton’s Alice In Wonderland, starring Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham-Carter.

Rehearsals for The Wizard of Oz are set to start on Monday in preparation for the launch of the show in March. Ava is contracted to appear in the production until September.

Ava moved from London to Fence with her mum and dad, Bill O’Brien, who runs production company Splinter Productions, in 2009.