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It's definitely 'not to be' for me, says Dee! Benefits Street stAR SCOTCHES RUMOURS SHE WILL PLAY HAMLET.

Byline: Fionnuala Bourke Staff Reporter fionnuala.bourke@trinitymirror.com

"TO BE or not to be, that is the question," Hamlet famously asks.

Tonight, in Birmingham, it's definitely "not to be" - at least as far as White Dee is concerned.

Theatre bosses have dismissed claims that the Benefits Street celebrity is to star in a production of Shakespeare's famous tragedy at The Library of Birmingham.

But the celebrity-cum-rapper, who has been filmed dressing up as Hamlet, is expected in the audience.

And she has been claiming she is a bigger star in the West Midlands than the world famous playwright, whose works have been entertaining audiences since the 16th century.

The 43-year-old, who has also been snapped posing as Juliet, from the Bard's Romeo and Juliet, told a national newspaper: "I haven't seen any of the original movies, I've seen the remakes.

"Hand on heart, I've never seen one of his plays in the theatre.

"And I can't say I was a fan of Shakespeare when I read his plays at school. But I've always been interested in him. He's an icon, isn't he, in the literature world? "As someone from Birmingham, I feel a lot of pride in him," added the mum-of-two.

But Birmingham Repertory Theatre, which is running the production, said: "White Dee has not been cast in Hamlet at Birmingham Repertory Theatre this week. "Hamlet is a production by Birmingham Repertory Theatre's youth theatre, The Young REP and Hotel Teatro.

"The performance takes place over all ten floors in the Library of Birmingham and within the production there are elements for audience participation.

"White Dee is attending the show as an audience member and we hope she enjoys her first experience of seeing Shakespeare performed live by a group of talented young people from across the West Midlands."

Reports claimed that Dee bagged the role after impressing Birmingham Repertory Theatre bosses with her opening speech from Romeo And Juliet on radio this month.

White Dee may do well to take heed of more words from Hamlet: "The lady doth protest too much, methinks!" Dee's agent Barry Tomes admitted that there had been some confusion, but said she is due at the VIP reception for the play.

Speaking from Dubai he added: "Dee is going along and will read, but not as the part of Hamlet. I hope the press interest in her appearing helps more people to enjoy Shakespeare."

CAPTION(S):

White Dee insists she won't be performing in the production of Hamlet at the Library of Birmingham, top, tonight. Right: Dee as she appeared in TV show Benefits Street |

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Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Mar 18, 2015
Words:432
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