About Us

The Phileas Fogg Theatre Company has become an integral part of the Dutch education system, working with many colleges across the Netherlands. Specialising in Theatre in Education, we understand that to build a student's confidence in using a second language, it is better to experience it actively. Therefore, we place a strong emphasis on 'learning through doing' and every pupil is 100% involved.

All of our fully trained, professional actors are native English speakers and have a wealth of experience to ensure every student makes the most of this opportunity, not only to learn but also to fully enjoy the experience. Run by our actors, we have a number of exciting, themed workshops and evening shows for all of your students.

Through our interactive workshops and shows, students are given the chance to gain a real insight and appreciation of classic English Literature. The Elizabethan period: the works of William Shakespeare. The Victorian period: Charles Dickens and J M Barrie and the First World War Poets, such as Rupert Brooke and Wilfred Owen. This can help every single student to become more confident when speaking English and become more confident in themselves.

The Fogg Family

Peter - An All Round Good Egg
(Pathfinder General)

Peter
Peter's bio

According to his parents, Peter was born outside a village called Wedlock.
At school he was always the Teacher’s pet. They kept him in a cage at the back of the classroom.
After leaving full time education at the tender age of 31, Peter started looking for a career that would suit his temperament and fully use his educational capabilities. The job at Lidl stacking shelves did not last long but it was a springboard into showbiz.
As lead singer for “Dicky Heart and the Pacemakers” he toured the high spots of Basingstoke and Horsham. It was during this period he got a call from the Phileas Fogg Theatre Company. He was offered the opportunity to become Assistant Bottle Washer. After years of training, dedication and hard work he is now Executive Assistant Bottle Washer.
He hopes to be awarded the Nobel Prize for his lemon meringue pie recipe and is currently the British Hide and Seek Champion.
His philosophy can be summed up by his profound saying, “There is many a cat wot has sat in front of the fire and got its bum burned”

Charlie - Lord Swindlehurst
(Artistic Director)

Charlie
Charlie's bio

Charles Septimus Grundle was found under a gooseberry bush on the 9th day of November, at some time in the last millennium.
He was raised in the Welsh town of
Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwyllllantysiogogogoch.
Because he could never pronounce it or spell it, he tells everyone he is from Cardiff.
After leaving The Greta Garbo Home for Wayward Boys and Girls, several jobs followed; a hod carrier for Lego and a bouncer for Mothercare. It was after he tried his luck as a soot juggler that the call of the theatre beckoned. It was there he found his true vocation and went from strength to strength and is now famed as the best actor to ever have come from
Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwyllllantysiliogg-ogoch.
In a nutshell, Charlie´s motto has always been "Dimitte me lambere faciem tuam!"

Maria - Miss Moneypenny (Operations & Logistics)

Maria- Miss Moneypenny
Maria's bio

Maria was a high flying executive in the bottled tomato juice industry. It was a chance meeting with the Dali Lama by the soups aisle in Waitrose, Basingstoke that changed her life.

She decided there and then to follow a metaphysical path of enlightenment. It was at a Buddhist retreat in Chipping Norton she developed her preternatural powers and fascination of previous lives.

So far Maria has established she was a 13th century female cobbler and a stoker aboard the Titanic.

We are very happy she joined Fogg because every morning we all follow her Hawaiian chant “Ku'u Ipo i ka He'e Pu'e One”, which means “may your pomegranate trees prosper.”

Karen - Lady Penelope
(Finances & Wisdom)

Karen - Lady Penelope
Karen's bio

We have sworn to keep the true identity of our new financial manager secret, she is known as Karen or Lady Penelope. This is due to various “incidents” in her past. What they were exactly, we are not permitted to reveal.

The details of how, when and where we recruited her are classified under the Official Secrets Act 1989. We have been allowed to give some details of her previous life.

She was born on the 29th of February.  By the time she was 10, she had been around the world twice. Her parents worked on cruise ships as Algenon and Ethel – The Rotators, with their sensational plate spinning act.

She was the first woman potholer to successfully navigate the Langcliffe Pot cave system on the slopes of Great Whernside in Upper Wharfedale.

She had a cameo role in Coronation Street as a hot chestnut vendor.

None of the above facts are true.

Bea - Secret Agent
(Social Media)

Bea - Social Media Manager
Bea's bio

It was at a “Bring you child to work Friday”, that started her interest of etymology. 

She heard a conversation between her father, a research palaeontologist, and a colleague, about a new intern.  Her father said, “We need to lick him into shape.”  Bea was fascinated by the phrase and began to research it. She found that it came from a medieval belief that bear cubs were born shapeless and their mother had to lick it into the shape of a bear.

But Bea wanted to know more, and traced the saying, and belief through English, French, German and Romanian literature.  She has found, so far, that the earliest written example of it, dates to Pliny the Elder in about 75AD.

She is now engaged in researching an obscure and mystifying English phrase, which again, she overheard on a bus in Peterborough, “A bird with wet wings does not fly backwards at night.”  I am sure she will update us all on our social media channels.

(The Actors)

Kyle

Kyle
Kyle's bio

Despite having the surname of McSporran, Kyle was not born in the Highlands of Scotland. This may explain why he does not like haggis, whiskey, Robbie Burns or bagpipes. He does, however, in the privacy of his home and only at weekends, enjoy putting on his kilt and quoting lines from the film Braveheart.
It was this film that inspired him to become an actor. His only limitation to the roles he takes on is that he insists on wearing the same face make up as Mel Gibson did, for every part. He also insists on calling everyone “Jimmy”.

Jen

Jen
Jen's bio

When Super – Jen was born on the distant planet of Basingstoke, she always dreamed of travelling far and wide. She spent 3 years in South Wales honing the skills that would keep her away from Basingstoke. She found Spain and loved life there so much she spent 5 years enjoying it. Then in January 2014 she discovered The Netherlands. What keeps Super – Jen in the land of the Nethers? The lovely people and beautiful landscape? Yes, but above all: Stroopwafels, stamppot and microwaveable cheeseburgers!

Ben

Ben
Ben's bio

Ben can trace his infatuation for history and historical figures back to a very young age. At primary school he was cast as Gaspar, one of the three wise men, in the Nativity play. Even at that young age Ben was determined to bring drama and theatrical accuracy to his role. Dressed in robes complete with flowing white beard he brought his younger brother on to the stage. His brother had green face make up and a bolt through his neck. He lurched on, arms outstretched while Ben delivered his only line; “I bring to you my gift of Frankenstein!”
Ben loves researching and donning authentic costumes of famous people of the past, his favourites being Genghis Khan, Nelson and Madame Curie. His pièce de résistance can be seen in the photograph, Helen of Troy.

Liane

Liane
Liane's bio

A lot of you will recognise Liane from her photograph. She was the first British person to win the highly acclaimed International, Competitive Yodelling gold medal in Bogota last year.

Under the tutorship of the legendary Dr. Hieronymus Fang, she mastered the extraordinary Bavarian Triple Warble. It was the first time, in over 25 years; this challenging yodel had been achieved.

She is now in training with the European Space Agency. Her lifelong ambition is to be the first person to yodel from the International Space Station.

Ivan

Ivan
Ivan's bio

Ivan was born in the wilds of Northumberland the son of an itinerant kipper salesman and the local public convenience attendant’s assistant. Cruelly denied a career in his first love of rabbit taming, due to injury, Ivan turned his thoughts to nobler pursuits and immediately began a life of devoted public service as a fish and chip sampler in Whitley Bay.
A brief sojourn to Spain*, via Bognor Regis, opened Ivan’s eyes to the possibilities of the world and to the fact that there was more to life than battered cod. Haddock for instance. Since then Ivan has been doing his civic duty by sampling fish dishes in various European countries leading to him working for Phileas Fogg, after he misunderstood the title, due to an inherent inability to think, and believed it to be a sought after Dutch delicacy similar to Kibbeling. He has also done some theatre.
*This may have been Aberdeen. His compass was broken.

Luna

Luna
Luna's bio

It was during rehearsals of Eugene Ionesco’s play, ‘The Bald Prima Donna’ at the John Joly Theatre in Bracknagh, when Luna stumbled upon her, until then, latent innovative, and inventing skills.

On stage, the trap door kept failing to open and close properly.  Various engineers, including one from the manufacturers, were baffled by the problem, and all of them came to the same conclusion,  it was a design fault.  Luna’s curiosity got the better of her and she decided to have a look.  Using 6, 8 x 10 hex head bolts, 3 hairpins, half a roll of gaffer tape and a pair or jump leads, one hour later the trap door was working perfectly.

Her next idea came after she watched her dear old Granny struggle to open a jar of pickled eggs.  The voice activated, self-opening bottle and jar lid appliance, (patent pending) was born.

She is now working on something else which is her secret, but she tells us “It will be a real game changer”.  So, watch this space!

John

John
John's bio

John is the son of the internationally acclaimed high wire act, ‘The Flying Thackers’.   He was born in the family caravan, on the A381 somewhere between Newton Abbot and Ipplepen.

Life in the circus was gruelling, so after taking advice from his closest friend and confidante, “Doris the Bearded Lady’, he left.  Because of his love and fascination of dolphins, Doris had suggested he became a dolphin trainer. But John had greater ambitions and decided to become a dolphin trainer trainer.  After three months of intensive theoretical training, it was on his first day of practical training, he discovered he was allergic to dolphins.

It was serendipity John joined Fogg.  He went into the hotel where we were auditioning for new actors, and saw our sign in the reception, ‘Phileas Fogg Theatre Company Auditions’.  When he auditioned, we recognised his incredible talent, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Felicity

Felicity
Felicity's bio

Felicity’s family are ardent Star Trek fans.  At the 1993 International Star Trek Convention in Melton Mowbray, they won the award of Best Star Trek family in the UK.  The award, which is proudly displayed in their main Star Trek cabinet, is a 1:10 scale model of the USS Enterprise NCC 1701.  One of Felicity’s earliest memories is attending a convention as Nurse Chapel from the original series.

As a teenager she went with her best friend to see a Star Wars film and fell in love with the Ewoks.  When she returned home, she asked her parents if she could go to the next convention as an Ewok.  There was a stunned silence then they explained that there is a certain rivalry between the two science fiction genres.

Felicity started to watch more Star Wars films and began to prefer them to Star Trek.  This led to some heated discussions, for example the type of fuel used in both.  Star Wars uses hypermatter, which is hazardous to organic lifeforms.  Star Trek ships use deuterium, which actually exists, and is harmless.  After the initial shock, harmony quicky returned to the family.

It was while watching the Royal Shakespeare Company actor, Patrick Stewart, in his role of Captain Jean-Luc Picard in Star Trek – Next Generation, that inspired her to become an actor. I think we should all be grateful to Star Trek.

Nathan

Nathan
Nathan's bio

It is most boys ambition to become a train driver and Nathan was no exception.

His first words were “choo choo” and his second, “chuff chuff.”

As a young lad he would go down to his local railway station. He still remembers and talks about his sighting of the legendary SR 2-BIL Electric multiple unit at Crawley, West Sussex.

As he grew up he directed all his energies into acting but the call of the train returned recently. Through a friend of his second cousin removed, he worked for a short period at Tirana railway station as assistant station manager. He still wears the official Hekurudha Shqiptare or HSH cap with pride.

His ability to speak Albanian has been of no use at all.

Alicia

Alicia
Alicia's bio

Alicia’s television work has been extensively fruit orientated.  Her first role was in the classic Hartley’s Jam advert, were she played the part of a raspberry. After the shoot the director took her aside and said, “That was the best portrayal of a raspberry I have ever seen!”

Encouraged by this remark, her next role was as a tomato in a Baxter’s Soup commercial.  Baxter’s, being a Scottish company, she played the part with a Scottish lilt.  For this outstanding rendition she won “The Golden Delicious Award” at the annual West Hartlepool Advertising Awards Ceremony.

There is a rumour that a stage version of Roald Dahl’s “James and the giant Peach” is being considered, and Alicia knows exactly which part she would like.

Charlie T

Charlie T
Charlie T's bio

Charlie is the founder of what hopefully will become the legendary company, ‘The Arthur Sproggit Credit Card Company’ ® He feels his catchy slogan, ‘Arthur Sproggit’s Gold Card says more about you than money ever will’, has a good chance of being more well known than, ‘I’m lovin’ it’.

Charlie is sick to death (as I think we all are) of how banks treat their customers with insouciance, disregard, and an arrogant, cavalier attitude.

His idea crystallised when he played Bertie the security guard in the film, ‘Bank of Dave’, (a very good film by the way).  It is based on a true story of how a working-class man beat the odds and created a new ethical, local bank for the people of Burnley.

To avoid confusion with our loved by all, legendary, Creative Director, Charlie, our new highly talented actor is known as Charlie Two or Charlie T.

Sasha

Sasha
Sasha's bio

Sasha went to Oxfords associate university in Chipping Norton, to study quantum mechanics and embroidery.  It was there met and then fell head over heels in love with a student who was studying Old Norse literature and poetry.

On many of the long, cold winter evenings, he would read aloud one of the historical or legendary sagas, as they huddled in front of their 3 bar electric fire. She became enamoured with the magnificent language and imagery.  Her favourite was King Harald’s Saga by Snorri Sturluson.

She then discovered Skaldi poetry and loved all of it. From the heroic Hofuolausm = Head Ransom to the more frivolous, Heyrnartaekio mitt hefur oroio fyrer ldinga = My hearing aid has been struck by lightning.

Sasha is trying to learn Icelandic to enjoy the literature more and is going to join a Viking re-enactment group.  Her dream part is Bragi, the Norse God of poetry.

Clodagh

Clodagh
Clodagh's bio

How many times can you change costumes in one minute, once maybe twice?

Clodagh can do more, a lot more!

Whilst touring Sri Lanka performing in “The Complete Works of Shakespeare (abridged), she learned a few tricks about changing her costumes quickly.  The 37 plays of Shakespeare are performed by 3 actors in 97-minute, fast changes are essential.

Clodagh became fascinated by the art and skill of quick-change artistes.  Her Mother, who normally sewed all the sequins onto the costumes for ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ was the right person to help her.  Between them they designed and made all of Clodagh’s costumes.

She has spent a lot of time honing her skills, because it is her ambition to beat Kardinay and Arkadlo’s, who on the 2nd of March 2023 changed costumes 25 times in a minute. Knowing Clodagh, she will do it!

Ellis

Ellis
Ellis's bio

Why his collection started, even Ellis is not quite sure. He only knows where and when it started.  He is now the proud owner of 857 miniature hotel shampoo bottles.

To help fund his way through university, Ellis obtained a job in housekeeping at the 2-star Dunromin Hotel in Bognor Regis.  Part of his duties included replacing the complimentary toiletries in the rooms.  He quickly realised that guests either used them or packed them in their suitcase. 

It was after a month that he found a bottle that had not been opened!  That is where his collection started.

Now, when he travels, he adds more to his collection.  This has been augmented by friends and family members who bring them back for him.

It was a chance meeting with an actor, who was also a collector, that inspired Ellis to become a versatile and energetic actor.

If there is any other collector out there, he would be happy to exchange bottles.

Gillian

Gillian
Gillian's bio

Gillian has been working tirelessly for the last 4½ years to achieve a world first.  Shortly, she hopes to astound the world by presenting her prickle (yes, that is the correct collective noun) of performing hedgehogs.

Most young children yearn to have a pet of some kind, and Gillian was no exception, but alas, she found she was allergic to cats, dogs, hamsters, mice, gerbils, and even lizards.

She was in her teens when Spikey Norman changed her life.  She found, in her garden, what looked like an abandoned hoglet.  Knowing that the parents may be close by, she waited patiently hidden from view.  She stayed there for hours, but the parents never appeared. Gingerly she picked up the tiny hoglet and found she had no allergic itching, and no hideous red marks broke out on her skin.  She was not allergic to hedgehogs!

She discovered that Spikey Norman reacted to her voice, so she trained him to perform simple tasks, which he loved.

Gillian´s  ‘Prickle of Hedgehogs’ will most likely be performing somewhere near you soon!  Watch this space…

Josh

Josh
Josh's bio

Josh was crest fallen when he read that in a recent poll, Dr Who’s number 1 scariest adversary, the Daleks, had been replaced by the Weeping Angels.

His disappointment was exacerbated by the fact he was just about to finish his full sized, operating Dalek.  A small rechargeable electric motor had been installed, so he could effortlessly glide over floors.  A voice distortion unit changed his voice to sound like a Dalek and an ingenious system of components make the Dalek’s head rotate.

Josh is now building a full sized, operating Weeping Angel, but he and his Dalek are available for Dr Who convention, weddings, birthday parties, Bar mitzvahs etc, however, please ensure there are no stairs or steps involved.

PS we are all trying to find you a 3-metre bathtub, because you told us you like long baths.

PPS I’ve got an original Dr Who pinball machine.

Melanie

Melanie
Melanie's bio

Melanie is a member of a niche, perhaps elite community, who have adopted the name of baggers or baggists, to describe their hobby.

She was on a plane, on her way to Tirana, to start the Albanian tour of her one woman show, ‘The Ballerina and the Teapot’.  Whilst thoroughly engrossed in her book, she was offered lunch by one of the cabin crew. She leaned forward and grabbed a sick bag to use as a bookmark; that was the start of her hobby.

Currently Melanie’s collection has reached double figures, and she will sigh as she tells you, “I’ve got a long way to go to catch up with the current Guiness Book of Records holder, a Dutchman called Nick Vermeulem, who has 6290 of them.”

She is happy to hear from fellow baggers, or anyone who would like to give her or swap sickbags, as long as they are unused!