A YOUNG actor who made his West End stage debut is among the cast of Birkenhead Operatic Society Trust's forthcoming production of classic musical Oliver!.

Brian Comer plays the Artful Dodger in the show which will be staged at the Royal Court in Liverpool from November 9-12. 

The 14-year-old appeared in the award-winning theatre company's 2012 production of the same musical.

When he was 11, Brian made his West End debut as Bruce Bogtrotter in Tim Minchin's Matilda The Musical at the Cambridge Theatre in London.

Brian said: "Hundreds of boys from all over the UK auditioned for the role.

"When I got down to the final three I was really nervous because I had to perform a song, script and dance routine.

"When I was told that I'd got the role I was so excited and I couldn’t wait to get started."

The youngster moved to London for rehearsals on January 11, 2015 and was home schooled alongside some of the other child performers.

Unlike Bruce Bogtrotter in the film version of Matilda, Brian was not required to eat a whole giant chocolate cake, however he did have to eat two small pieces during each performance.

He also had to wear a fat suit and perform a solo song at the end of the show. He went on to perform the role for nearly a year with over 50 performances under his belt.

When asked where Brian's interest in musical theatre stemmed from, his supportive mum Clare said: "His first on-stage experience came at the tender age of seven, when he played the role of Chip in BOST's production of Disney's Beauty and the Beast.

"Through BOST rehearsals, Brian learnt the discipline required for the theatre which has stood him in good stead for what he’s since gone on to achieve."

BOST's director Elsie Kelly said: "I could see potential in Brian from a young age.

"It's rewarding to see how much he has grown in confidence and to see his enthusiasm for the stage go from strength to strength."

Bringing the title role to life is 12-year-old Cole Boon, with 12 other talented local boys performing alongside him in Fagin's Gang.

Oliver will be staged at the Royal Court from November 9-12.

Tickets from the box office at http://www.royalcourtliverpool.co.uk/whats-on/oliver/