Sherlock is such a dream of a character- Interview with Jake Ferretti -The Hound of the Baskervilles
Updated: Apr 29, 2022
Actor Jake Ferretti has starred in a number of productions, playing the role of Tom Buchanan in 'The Great Gatsby', Josh in 'Toast' and Josh Harper in 'The Understudy'. He is currently touring the UK playing the iconic role of Sherlock Holmes and other roles in Original Theatre Company and Octagon Theatre Bolton's comedy production of 'The Hound of the Baskervilles'. This hilarious production has received rave reviews, with the British Theatre Guide stating that it is ‘Just what the doctor ordered: a slick frivolous three-hander whodunnit with much hilarity and impressive effects’
I was able to talk with Jake all about the show and his experiences with being back on tour after the long period of enforced theatre closures.
With theatre finally open again, how does it feel to be back on stage?
It feels great to be back! I’ve had an exceptionally tough few years, mental health-wise, and so being back working on my career has been an absolute God send. ‘The Hound of the Baskervilles’ is a very fast paced, high energy show. Do you have a favourite scene to perform?
I wouldn’t say I have a favourite, per se (which is probably not very helpful to you!), mainly because I enjoy working on this show with Niall and Serena so much that the whole thing feels like just messing about with your mates. It’s a dream! One that stands out is the ‘little girl/vicar’ scene - people absolutely love it and it’s a real test for Niall and I not to break into fits of laughter! I imagine that after the lockdowns and everything, it must be nice to out touring again. Do you have a favourite thing about being out on tour?
I live a very transient lifestyle anyway and love to be busy, so exploring new venues, areas, etc is so cool. Plus, performing on stages where other much more famous and prolific creatives have performed is the true leveller. Niall, Serena and I are huge foodies too, so exploring the local eateries is a must for us! There are constant recommendations on our WhatsApp group.
You play multiple parts in ‘The Hound of the Baskervilles’, including Sherlock of course. What is it like to play so many characters and have to change them so quickly?
I love the fast-paced, quick-changeness of it all. I was prepped in my second audition that this wasn’t a show where I would get to chill in the dressing room for 20 minutes; I told them that was a big reason for my wanting to do it. Regardless of the job, I want to grow, learn and become a better, more confident actor and you don’t get to do that backstage, in your dressing room, scrolling through the internet. Plus, I’m a sucker for a challenge - as soon as someone says something like, “are you sure you’ll be able to do that?” or “that’ll be quite tricky”, it’s like a dog to a bone! With the pandemic very much still ongoing, does it affect the way in which things have to be done in regards to touring life?
To an extent, yes; we have several Lateral Flow Tests each week to complete, when we are on stage during the get-in day (normally Tuesdays) we wear masks. The safety of the production, plus the audience and theatre staff’s well-being is paramount for both the cast/crew and Original Theatre Company. We’re not out of this yet (far from it), so we have to be safe for everyone’s sake. Why should people come and see ‘The Hound of the Baskervilles’?
D’you have a friend/family member/work colleague that, when you see/chat to them, you have the best time and have a right laugh? This is what the show is! We’ve all had a horrendous few years and we all need a few hours off to sit in a theatre and just have a good time! I promise you, it’s far more entertaining than Love Island!
What is it like to perform a show with such a small cast?
I kind of feel I’ve hit the jackpot working with Serena and Niall. All three of us get on super well, we love our own time, but thrive off of one another’s energy too. We have a lot in common and, thankfully, also love to have a chat in a pub at the end of the performance. To find that kind of kinship in a much bigger cast is more difficult. You play a lot of roles in the show, but if you could play one of the other characters, which would you like to play and why?
I know it’s such a cliche, but Sherlock is such a dream of a character. He is incredibly multi-layered and you can delve so deeply with him. At the beginning, when Dr. Mortimer explains about the death of his friend, Sir Charles Baskerville, he is already 12 steps ahead of both Mortimer and Watson within the first few minutes of him being there. Fascinating!
I would like to thank Jake for taking time out of his busy schedule to answer these questions and wish him all the very best for the rest of the tour and for the future.
If you would like to catch 'The Hound of the Baskervilles' out on tour, you can find information about upcoming tour dates here https://www.originaltheatre.com/our-productions/the-hound-of-the-baskervilles/about-the-show
Photo credit - Pamela Raith