Just A Quick Bite with...dancer Javier Torres, who will play the vampire in Northern Ballet's resurrection of Dracula from tomorrow.

Is this the first time you will have played Dracula, Javier?

"This is the first time I’ve performed in Northern Ballet’s Dracula. I did Dracula when I was performing in Miami but it was a totally different version and every company wants something different from their production."

How have you prepared for such an iconic character as Dracula?

"I think getting into character is quite difficult for Dracula as it's such a different character to play. I've sat down and talked to David [Northern Ballet artistic director, choreographer and costume designer David Nixon] and discussed what he wants with his ballet and his character and then I’ve gone away and prepared myself to do it."

Have you read the Bram Stoker novel to help you prepare to play Dracula?

"I know it’s really bad but I don’t like to read the book or watch the film of the ballets I’m doing. I read the book and watched the film of The Great Gatsby after I’d performed it. I prefer to build my own character so I can but my own stamp on the person I’m playing; it’s like having a blank slate. For me, it doesn’t make sense to take the characterisation from someone else, such as through a film. I like to start afresh and build my own version of the character in my own style."

What do you think will be the main challenges of embodying Dracula?

"My biggest challenge will be that he’s not a normal man; he’s not human. I don’t like the idea of bats, vampires, drinking blood or the supernatural world, so I will have to change my whole attitude towards this and try to embody this person who I’m not. I will have to pour myself into playing a person that is not even human.

"Parts of the ballet are really clever and the second pas de deux with Mina is really beautiful. I also love how wonderful the music is but Dracula is a totally different creature to me; I’m going to have to come totally out of myself to play him. It will be fun but it’s really dark so it will be hard."

How does the costume help with characterisation?

"You look disgusting with a white face, fangs and a wig. When I see myself in the mirror as Dracula, that’s when I will really become him, although mentally I will have prepared myself, which is easier the more experienced you are."

How does it feel to dance in Dracula’s cape?

"I have rehearsed in the cape and it’s very hot and heavy. I think it’s around ten kg or more. You have to turn, jump, partner people and lift men and women, all with the cape on, which is like having someone else hanging on your back, so you’re having to work double. It looks amazing though."

Why is Dracula's story still so popular?

"I’m not very sure about this because I don’t like the supernatural world and vampires, so to me it seems very strange. I think people are just fascinated by weird and unusual things, so Dracula definitely fits the bill. The story also has a human value, though, because Dracula is trying to find somebody to love as well, so in a way it is a love story and I think this is one of the things that really appeals to its fans."

Northern Ballet's Dracula runs at the West Yorkshire Playhouse, Leeds, from tomorrow until September 13; 7.30pm, except Sunday and Monday; 2pm, both Saturdays and Thursday. Box office: 0113 213 7700 or wyp.org.uk. Age guidance: 12 plus.