IT will be a childhood dream come true for one Hampshire musician when he spends a week treading the boards at Mayflower Theatre next week.

Despite impressive appearances in Madness musical Our House, the Blues Brothers - On A Mission from God and Lipstick on Your Collar in some of the biggest theatres in the land, the actor and musician Jay Osborne has never taken to that illustrious stage in Southampton.

But that's all about to change when Dreamboats and Petticoats arrives in town and Jay continues his sting starring as lead guitarist Richard.

He told the Daily Echo: "My family and I always went to see pantomimes around Christmas time and would also go to the theatre throughout the year to see musicals and various shows, I suppose this had a heavy influence on me wanting to become an actor and musician.

"When we'd go and see the shows, I sort of thought it was the pinnacle really to be up there on stage at the Mayflower. I couldn't imagine ever performing there. So it was extra special when this job came up and I saw it was part of the tour. It's going to be a bit of an emotional week for me, but it's really, really exciting. I haven't performed there before and it's going to be a great moment for me personally. It's going to be great!

Despite being exposed to rock n roll music from an early age from his parents and grandmother, huge Roy Orbison and Elvis fans, Jay didn't plan on performing until his then girlfriend persuaded him to audition for a part in the school production at Hardley School (now New Forest Academy).

"I nearly chickened out," he laughs. "But I ended up getting a lead role. I played Cosmo Brown in Singin in the Rain and from then on decided I wanted to study performing arts."

Two years at Brockenhurst College followed and the man who reluctantly took to a Waterside stage has recently completed a UK tour as MC/Guitarist with Buddy Holly and the Cricketers.

Before that he was touring Italy playing Mr Fabulous in The Blues Brothers, during which he added playing the harmonica to his list of instrumental talents.

As a founder member of percussion group JuNK, Jay toured internationally in And Then There Were 4, and has also appeared with the group on Celebrity, Disney, Carnival Cruises as well as appearing on various TV shows.

Jay has also toured in numerous rock and indie bands supporting such artists as Artful Dodger, The Hives, Nizlopi, The Wide Boys and Bob Dylan.

But this could just be his favourite role to date.

"It's just perfect for me," he says. "You're pretty much born knowing this sort of music and no matter how old you are or where you're form, there will be songs in the show that everyone will know.

"It's set in the early 60s, around the time when rock n roll was at its biggest. There's fashion, romance and loads of musical references to the early 60s. Everyone is up on their feet and dancing by the end of the show."

See Jay in Dreamboats and Petticoats at Mayflower Theatre from Tuesday to Saturday.

Tickets: 023 8071 1811 or,uk