Brother and sister Stephen and Letitia Dean will pass through Bradford like ships that cross in the night.

Letitia, the EastEnder who cheated on Grant Mitchell and lived to talk about it, is preparing to come here with a revival of Joe Orton's black comedy, Loot.

Meanwhile, it's her less famous but no less talented brother who forms the advance party. And for Stephen Dean, the prospect of a week at the Alhambra affords a family reunion of sorts.

Despite the Cockney connotations, the Deans' roots are planted firmly in Yorkshire. The family tree is a little shaky, though.

"My mother's from Leeds - Gildersome, I think - and we have relatives in Guiseley. Or is it Garforth?" says Stephen, an actor and musician who appears next week in the stage version of the Fifties-inspired TV show, Happy Days.

"We all lived in York for a while. But we've been in London for most of our lives."

He and Letitia took the plunge into acting together. "We were never a showbiz family, but our parents were very supportive about the business we wanted to go into," he says.

At first it was he, not Letitia, who landed the bigger roles. A stint as chorister at St Paul's Cathedral led, at 11, to a job with Tommy Steele in Hans Anderson at the London Palladium.

"After that I went to drama school and my sister joined me there."

While she went on to become Albert Square's two-timing Sharon Mitchell, he launched a stage career that has encompassed such musicals as Grease, The Rocky Horror Show and Jesus Christ Superstar.

He has been to Bradford twice before, in shows based on the lives of Elvis Presley and Patsy Cline. "The Alhambra is the premier venue in the country for performers," he says. "Everyone loves to come here."

The stage version of Happy Days has been on the road for only a few weeks, but its reception has been so good that a West End transfer is now considered a certainty.

"It's the music that makes it work," says Dean. "I wasn't born in the Fifties, but even I can see that the songs then were the best ever. This is the music that all the new bands cover, even now."

At 32, he is almost twice the age of his character, the freckle-faced and perpetually nave Richie Cunningham.

"But Richie's age is never mentioned," he says. "Anyway, high school kids are older in America then they are here."

His age notwithstanding, Dean bears a striking resemblance to Ron Howard, the actor who created the role on TV.

"And I wear the same clothes, even off stage," he says.

He would like to compare notes with his predecessor - hardly surprising since Howard is now one of Hollywood's most successful film directors.

"I've sent him my CV, just in case," he says.

"I realise he might not read it - but at least I can console myself with the thought that I still have my hair and he doesn't."

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