HE first trod the boards at the Octagon Theatre as a teenager playing with the idea of taking up acting as a career.

And now after a string of theatre and television credits, Reuben Johnson is coming back to where it first started to take on the mantel of Arthur Conan Doyle's legendary super sleuth Sherlock Holmes.

Reuben, who started his acting journey with the Octagon Youth Theatre, said: "It has been worth the wait to come back here, and playing Sherlock Holmes in the opening of he new theatre after covid is just awesome.

"I think this is a perfect play to open the theatre after such a time."

The smash it comedy adaptation of the classic The Hound of the Baskervilles story will be the Octagon's first big production since it closed for a multi-million transformation in Summer of 2018 and the onset of the pandemic put its reopening plans on ice.

"This is show is quite different it has a real comedy element to it.

"I have been watching old Hound of Baskervilles actually I can see where they have got it from "It is not a comedy but there are comedic elements, some deliberate and some not deliberate so I think the writers have taken from that. It is the Hound of Baskervilles, the story is all there but with added laughs," said Reuben, who acting sill was first spotted at Walkden High School by a teacher who encouraged him to join the youth theatre."

Stepping into Sherlock's shoes is no mean feat.

“I know it is a challenge, I was ready for the challenge if I have been trusted to do lets do it," said Reuben, “I have watched a lot of the older Sherlock Holmes just to get a flavour of each and I have had my own thoughts about the character and have put a bit of me in that."

He added: "I'm just buzzing getting to play such a big part and also do all the other fun stuff, playing seven other characters."

Reuben said: "I think the show will be fun most importantly. It is going to be great for fans for Sherlock Holmes in general but also non fans, I like Sherlock Holmes but I wouldn't have said I was a huge fan, but I know I would love this show, it is very well written, it is quite farcical in a way, but it is just really solidly written, the comedy is bob on in this."

The Hound of the Baskervilles opens on July 1 and runs until August 7.

For tickets ring1204 520661 or visit octagonbolton.co.uk The Octagon

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