Sunday 25 March 2018

Cumberbatch fans cross the world to see his Hamlet debut

Benedict Cumberbatch with the cast of Hamlet in rehearsal
Benedict Cumberbatch with the cast of Hamlet in rehearsal
People queue for returned tickets for the opening night of Hamlet

Fans of Benedict Cumberbatch have travelled thousands of miles to see their idol make his debut as Hamlet.

The fastest-selling play in British history, which is showing at the Barbican, sold out within hours and tickets are now being traded on eBay for up to £1,500.

But some desperate fans of the Sherlock and Star Trek star have camped outside the theatre in an attempt to clinch some last-minute tickets. Each day of the 12-week production 30 tickets are being released costing £10 on a first-come first-served basis.

Yi Shan Chen, 35, travelled more than 6,000 miles from Taiwan to see the play because of her infatuation with Cumberbatch.

She said: "He's a special actor. I came to England on July 21 and visited Edinburgh and York but this trip was always about coming to London to see this play and him."

Ms Shan Chen added: "It's hard to describe why I like him so much. When you see him act, you see his emotion, the audience can really see that."

The Chinese literature teacher is also planning on returning to the theatre on Thursday morning in order get another round of tickets. She's joined by Chou Shih-Yun, also 35 and from Taiwan, who called her friend "crazy" and was just there as "support".

Hamlet runs from August 5 until 31 October with the ticket office opening at 10.30am each day the production runs.

Nancy Jenkins queued for more than six hours to get a ticket and was eventually successful after someone returned theirs.

She said: " I think it is always exciting to see a production of Hamlet but it is particularly exciting to see one with Benedict Cumberbatch in because he is such an incredible actor.

"I've seen him in quite a few things like After the Dance and Frankenstein as well as Sherlock. It's the opportunity to see him in probably the greatest role ever written for the stage."

"He's a phenomenal actor, so intelligent and yet quirky. I think his interpretation of Hamlet will be really exciting so I'm looking forward to seeing that," added Ms Jenkins.

Ms Jenkins, who is returning home to Saudi Arabia on Friday, said the play would be an "unbelievably perfect end" to her trip.

Press Association

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