puppeteer for television film and theatre

Me at an early stage...in the New Forest

The story so far

I was born into a theatrical family and spent most of my childhood in a theatre. From as long as I can remember I regularly put on puppet shows for my friends and family using whatever was at hand. My professional work started as a young child when I performed on stilts with Chipperfield's Circus and was attacked by a lion at the Bristol Hippodrome! I appeared in productions at Salisbury Playhouse and then got my first TV job, at the age of 13, in a CITV series called 'Letty' about children living in care. As a teenager I also appeared in various TV dramas including, 'Tenko', 'Miss Marple' and 'Rockliffe's Follies'.

At the age of 19 I was offered places at both RADA and LAMDA. After much deliberation I decided to follow in my Mum's footsteps and go to LAMDA. Whilst training, I was lucky to tour across Europe and to Russia with a wacky version of 'Taming of the Shrew'. The show was so popular that it caused riots in Moscow! I always enjoyed the physical theatre, clowning, mask , Le Coq and improvisation classes at college and often wondered why I hadn't chosen to train in Paris!

On completing my 3 year training I was part of setting up a theatre cooperative in Paddington in the basement of a Franciscan Monastery! 'Arts Threshold' was spear headed by the visionary director, Brian Astbury, who was involved in setting up the first multi racial theatre in Johannesburg - The Space. It was headed by, the then fledgling but now director of The National Theatre, Rufus Norris.

My work began to more and more include puppetry and I studied puppetry skills with Georgian Puppet Master Nutza Dolakidze, TV puppetry with Nigel Plaskitt and glove technique with Martin Bridle. Whilst raising my young family in the New Forest I became Associate Director for Forest Forge Theatre Company setting up and running youth theatre and many community projects. I directed for several other companies using puppetry on a regular basis. For 5 years I ran my own Arts Council funded puppet company, Wild Wood Theatre and toured throughout the UK and abroad. My one man version of Shakespeare's Dream, 'Puck's Bottom' was chosen to represent Great Britain at Kaohsiung Puppet Festival in Taiwan.

In 2008 I was offered a part in a CBeebies comedy show. This is where my relationship with children's television began. Since then I have appeared in over 200 episodes of the BBC Worldwide production of 'ZingZillas' and 'Zing Bop' as a puppeteer and voice artist. I played Billy the badger in 26 episodes of the BAFTA award winning 'Big City Park' on CBeebies. I have also appeared in a variety of other children's TV shows including, The Jim Henson Company & Sixteen South's award winning show 'Pajanimals', (now screening across the USA and Canada), Becky Butters in CBBC's 'Strange Hill High', Scrappz on Mr Maker's Arty Party, and 'ABC Bear' for German speaking KidsTV. I was invited to go and do a short stint on the new Muppet movie - 'The Muppets...Most Wanted' as well as working as Puppet advisor on Michael Fassbender's new film 'Assassin's Creed'. I recently worked over several months as an additional puppeteer on 'The Dark Crystal' for Netflix and I have just been working on the new series of Dr Who.

Working as a screen puppeteer I feel blessed to still be doing what I loved to do as a child.