FORGET the BBC1 reality television programme, I'd do Anything, which aimed to find stars to appear in a new West End version of Oliver.

Next week, more than fifty members of Salisbury Playhouse's youth theatre Stage '65, will tread the boards of the main house stage to perform Lionel Bart's popular musical, Oliver.

Packed with familiar songs such as Food, Glorious Food, Consider Yourself and Oom Pah Pah, the production is directed by Ben Occhipinti, who successfully directed last summer's production of The Boyfriend with the youth theatre.

Interestingly enough Stage '65's rehearsals have been running alongside the television programme, but that is where the parallel ends. For three of the young actors with starring roles next week, their chance to lead in the main house at Salisbury Playhouse is the tops.

"I would love to audition for the West End," says Holly Jasper, 17, who plays Nancy. "But it was so exciting being cast for this part.

"One of the highlights for me was the first time we rehearsed in the Playhouse's new rehearsal space, with all the youth theatre groups coming together.

"Being part of a huge cast, there is such an impact, it is wonderful."

Confusingly, Oliver Short, 13, plays Oliver, and Oliver Mallam, 18, plays Fagin. But any confusion soon ends, as their roles are so different.

This is Oliver Mallam's first big part with Stage '65, though he has appeared in school productions and other Stage '65 shows. "I really have the acting bug and will be going to drama school in the autumn," he said. "My aim is to play Fagin in the West End. It has been my dream to play Fagin and I was over the moon when I heard I had got the part."

Oliver Short, with his demanding role as the young Oliver Twist, gets to sing the one solo in the show, Where is Love, a prospect which does not seem to daunt him.

He said: "I have been singing for seven years with Fordingbridge Church Choir and I am a member of the International Youth Choir.

"This is my first big part and it is just such fun."

Director Ben says there will be 65 happy young people next week, with 50 in the cast and 15 working backstage.

"Quite an epic, in fact," he says.

"Because it is such an exciting story and such a popular show, it makes it one of the most rewarding and exhilarating experiences you can have.

"The sheer joy of everyone involved, co-ordinating together on stage, that's what matters."

q Stage '65's production of Oliver runs from Tuesday to Saturday and some performances have already sold out.