Child’s play for Iain

PUBLISHED: 11:52 12 October 2006 | UPDATED: 14:50 12 May 2010

Iain Ridley as Danny, with Dr Spencer (Nia Davies) and Dad (Dafydd Emyr)

Iain Ridley as Danny, with Dr Spencer (Nia Davies) and Dad (Dafydd Emyr)

While most twentysomethings would shudder at the thought of being mistaken for a child, rising actor Iain Ridley is making a name for himself doing exactly that. The 23-year-old has just finished a run playing the lead in Danny, the Champion of the World

While most twentysomethings would shudder at the thought of being mistaken for a child, rising actor Iain Ridley is making a name for himself doing exactly that.

The 23-year-old has just finished a run playing the lead in Danny, the Champion of the World at the Cambridge Arts Theatre.

But he remains unperturbed by appearing as a nine-year-old.

"I always get told I look younger than I am and I don't really feel 23 but it can be a bit of a leap to become a child," he says.

"It's an easy place to get your head though - we've all been children.

"I think most children come across Roald Dahl. You'd have to live on the moon not to.

"Some people question his popularity with children now - thanks to a certain boy wizard - but I still think he's the best.

"With Roald Dahl, it's all about empowerment of the child."

He speaks enthusiastically about his training in London, where he was able to study for the British Academy of Dramatic Combat advanced course.

"I think it was fantastic. We got to learn how to use all different forms of weapons," he says.

"It's all done safely and with professionals, but it was amazing fun."

Much of Ridley's career has been on the stage, but he has recently taken his first steps into television.

Earlier this year he filmed an episode for the second series of the Channel 4 documentary series Alive.

He said: "I flew out to Africa, to Namibia, in the summer. It was very hard work, but absolutely amazing to go there.

"I'd still like to do lots more theatre, but television is great fun. The opportunity to travel the world is something that I'm really interested in."

He says he finds life as a touring actor, moving between cities every few days, very hard, being away from friends and family.

"You get to see lots of places though," he adds, cheerfully.

"I love Cambridge - I have met up with lots of friends here, but some weeks you find yourself in places where you don't know anyone."

Iain Ridley can be seen in Danny the Champion of the World, currently touring the country.

The next series of Alive will be shown on Channel 4 early in the new year.


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