Dan hops into new West End role that’s made-to-measure

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An Alnwick lad who made it big on the West End last year is taking on a second adventure which sees him stretch himself both physically and mentally.

Daniel Hope landed his first dream gig when he became the understudy role for Boq in Wicked in London last November.

The 24-year-old has now been given a second very special opportunity to work on an exciting new production of Alice: A New Musical.

The rising star is playing The Rabbit in a new, darker version of the Disney classic, Alice in Wonderland.

In the new production, the characters are given more human-like qualities which Daniel says makes a refreshing change.

He said: “It’s such an interesting process because we never have that much input. We’ve had so much scope, so it’s really refreshing.

“It’s amazing for us to have the freedom to explore the characters and be part of the creative process. I mean we know the characters from the film but we’ve let the the animals have human characteristics so we’ve had to experiment.”

Surprisingly, Daniel is able to work on this production and Wicked at the same timebecause Alice: A New Musical has been specially designed to use some of the best of London’s musical talent.

“We’re all in the musical theatre industry, three of us are from Wicked, one from Les Mis and a couple of people are in-between shows which is a really cool thing.”

The technical name for the type of show Daniel is involved with is a fringe performance, where directors harvest small audiences to come and watch the show. They engage with the audience and make tweaks as they go.

Daniel said: “We opened on Monday to an audience and started rehearsing two weeks ago.

“I mean, it’s 45 minutes so we’ve had such a good length of time to practise.

“The thing is, if you do something at the Playhouse it’s rehearsals once a week but with something like this you have four or five rehearsals a week.”

Daniel is no stranger to the Alnwick Playhouse stage, starring in many pantomimes, dance shows and musicals at the theatre.

Alice: A New Musical opened on Monday and runs at the St James Theatre in London until March 21.