Therese Bailey, known to most as Bunty Bailey, is a former English actress, model, and dancer. While Ms. Bailey had a successful career as a member of the dance troupe Hot Gossip, she is known around the world as “the girl from that a-ha video” or, “the Take On Me girl”. 

a-ha’s official video for their mega-hit Take On Me is arguably one of the most memorable music videos ever produced.

The song is a masterclass in 80’s synth-pop sensibilities, with one of the catchiest choruses to come out of that decade. However, it was the video, with its clever combination of pencil-sketch animation and live-action and Ms. Bailey’s indisputable élan that catapulted the song to a worldwide phenomenon.

And while music fans around the world have kept up to date with a-ha’s goings-on (they’ve stayed active, and released music as recently as September of 2022), many often wonder what happened to that beautiful Take On Me girl from the video.

What Happened to the Girl in the Take on Me Video?

Therese “Bunty” Bailey is in Wraysbury, Berkshire, a historic county of South East England. There she lives with her two young sons, 26-year-old Jake, and 25-year-old Felix.

Over the years Bunty has had different jobs, but she now teaches dance to kids. The “Take On Me” girl, born in 1964, is now a 58-year-old woman who remembers her distant past with fondness and satisfaction.

After her worldwide breakthrough, and the rise and fall of a romantic relationship with a-ha’s lead singer, Bunty Bailey appeared in several movies, tv shows, and musicals.

However, she never again gained as much notoriety and recognition as she did with a-ha’s iconic black-and-white video.

  • Bunty Bailey’s Career Highlights:
  • The Kenny Everett Show (early 1980s) with Hot Gossip
  • “Talking Loud and Clear”, OMD (1984)
  • “Take On Me”, a-ha (1985) as the Girl
  • “The Sun Always Shines on TV”, a-ha (1985) as the Girl
  • “To Be A Lover”, Billy Idol (1986) dancer
  • Spellcaster (1987) as Cassandra Castle
  • Dolls (1987) as Isabel Prange
  • Rock and the Money-Hungry Party Girls (1988)
  • Glitch! (1988) as Bimbo
  • a-ha: Headlines and Deadlines – The Hits of a-ha (1991)
  • Essential Music Videos: Hits of the 80s (2003)
  • Video on Trial: “Episode No.2.6” (2006)
  • Defunct (2008) as Gypsy Momma

Ms. Bailey was also chosen as one of the 100 most beautiful music video stars in history when she made FOX’s The Hottest ’80s Video Vixens list. And although she no longer aspires to be part of that world, she remains in contact with key people from her past, including her former lover and lead singer of a-ha, Morten Harket.

As recently as 2019, Bailey was featured in a-ha: The Making of Take on Me, a very short film that details the evolution of a-ha’s first big hit and Bunty Bailey’s journey from literally unknown to one of the music industry’s most iconic participants, the Take On Me girl!