HAYDON Wick’s Scarlet Roche is only 11 years old, but she has already secured her West End debut in a record-breaking London show.
The Bradon Forest School student was offered the role of Veruca Salt in Hollywood director Sam Mendes’ Charlie and the Chocolate Factory last September, and is now treading the boards at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane.
Scarlet, who is living in Charlie House, a place to stay for people in the show, while she performs in it, said: “Its so fun. It’s like the best opportunity ever.
“It was different to what I am used to as it’s such a big stage every night. It’s really fun.”
After a gruelling five-week rehearsal period in October, Scarlet will now star opposite West End stars Nigel Planer and Douglas Hodge.
She said: “It’s really good. I have already met some famous people who have come in.
“My friends and family are all really proud.”
Scarlet went up against more than 100 other young dancers to win the principal role, which opened in the West End last December.
She said: “I went for one audition during a project last year and I went for four auditions and I found out about it from my dance teacher and she sent me for an audition.
“There were quite a lot of people. I went for one audition and I thought that was it but there was like, 100 other people.
“It was really fun. We also did singing and dancing as well.
The Darcey Bussell fan has high hopes for her career and hopes to be in more West End shows in the future.
She said: “I would love to be in Matilda next but anything I was offered I would take.”
Scarlet has already appeared in the English Youth Ballet’s production of Swan Lake at the New Theatre in Oxford after being the only one of 130 applicants to win a full scholarship.
At the time Scarlet was so surprised she had received the scholarship that she had to double check that it was her number that had been called.
She said: “I was shocked when they gave me the full scholarship at Swan Lake.”
The youngster trains at the Gemma Short School of Dance & Theatre Arts in Old Town.
Last year she also won a coveted place at the Classical Ballet Academy at Tring Park School for the Performing Arts where she trains every other Sunday.
Last May, Scarlet also won the Junior Modern Championships at the Bournemouth Competitive Dance Festival.
Her last performance at Drury Lane will take place on May 12. To book tickets for the show, visit www.charlieandthechocolatefactory.com.
To find out more about the Gemma Short School, visit www.gemma shortschoolofdance.co.uk.