Rising theatre star Ricky Oakley has landed his dream role of playing Hamlet.
The 23-year-old played the lead role in the Shakespeare tragedy at the Shakespeare Globe, in London, as part of the Sam Wanamaker Festival.
Ricky, from Gosport, said he was excited and terrified at playing the character.
‘I was really nervous about playing Hamlet,’ he said.
‘When we did our first dress rehearsal actually on the stage of the Shakespeare Globe it was really scary.
‘That was when it became real.
‘It seats around 2,000 people and the show was sold out which made it even scarier.
‘I started speaking the lines and it was magical.
He added: ‘I was really excited but terrified at the same time.
‘I never thought I would be performing at the Shakespeare Globe, let alone playing the main character in the play.
‘For the past few years I have been desperate to play Hamlet and now I am.
‘All the time I was at college and at theatre school, I never tried to think about specific roles I wanted. I just hoped I would get them.’
Ricky started getting into theatre production while at Fareham College.
He started performing with the Titchfield Festival Theatre and then went on to get a place at the Rose Bruford School of Performance, in Kent.
Ricky added: ‘Getting a place at Titchfield Festival Theatre was really, really good. They do a lot of Shakespeare and that really helped.
‘I think it is because of them I managed to get into such a good theatre school.’
Ricky was picked from the 50 students on his course to be in Hamlet with fellow student Emma Drinkwater-James.
Together, they performed in Hamlet as part of the festival, held on Sunday, which celebrates young acting talent.
The festival celebrated its 10th anniversary this year and students from the UK’s 21 top drama schools, plus students from New Jersey, USA, performed on the day.