Paul Ferris (du Fer) has 36 years experience working within the entertainment industry.
Paul trained at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London and whilst there worked on many productions including Bernstein’s Mass under the direction of Leonard Bernstein himself. He also worked on Bernstein’s musical Wonderful Town and Verdi’s opera Falstaff, both of which also performed at the Arts Theatre, Cambridge. He started his professional career by working on David Merrick’s musical 42nd Street at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane in 1984 and on a Royal Variety Performance in the presence of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh at the same theatre in 1985 and featuring stars such as Stephanie Lawrence, Jean Simmons, Elisabeth Welch, Alice Faye, Martin Shaw, Ron Moody, Frankie Vaughan, Roy Castle, Sarah Brightman, Norman Wisdom, Joan Collins, Celeste Holme, Beryl Reid, Jose Carreras, Don Ameche and Lauren Bacall.
Included a repertory season at the Connaught Theatre, Worthing, various productions at the Brighton Festival and Edinburgh Festival as well as London Fringe productions of Miss Julie directed by Alan L. Strong at the Cafe Theatre and The Rivals directed by Carole Todd at the Boulevard Theatre. He has also worked on national and international tours of productions such as Blood Brothers, What The Butler Saw, Much Ado About Nothing, The Death of Arthur, The Dresser, Forty Years On, The Provok’d Wife, A Pageant, A Cricket Match, Move Over Mrs. Markham with Peggy Mount, Ray Cooney’s farce One For The Pot, Alan Ayckbourn’s play Affairs In A Tent, See How They Run, Birthday Suite by Robin Hawdon, Nobody’s Perfect by Simon Williams, Who Goes Bare? by Richard Harris & Leslie Darbon, The Game of Murder by Victor Leigh and a national tour of Hi-De-Hi! by Jimmy Perry and David Croft.
He has worked in France, touring with various productions as well as having worked on resident seasons in Paris on productions such as The Signalman’s Apprentice by Brian Phelan, Private Lives by Noel Coward and The Dining Room by A. R. Gurney. Early work in the West End of London included productions of Lady Day starring Dee Dee Bridgewater at the Piccadilly Theatre, Anything Goes starring Elaine Paige and John Barrowman at the Prince Edward Theatre and Charlie & the Chocolate Factory at the Sadler’s Wells Theatre as well as on an extensive tour of the UK.
Work with dance companies including the Georgian State Dance Company at the Dominion Theatre, London and on a extensive national tour, The Moscow Classical Ballet with their acclaimed production of Swan Lake starring Vladimir Malakhov and Don Quixote at the Sadler’s Wells and on a national tour, The Moscow Festival Ballet on tour and the English National Ballet at the London Coliseum, the Royal Festival Hall, London and on tours of the UK, Germany and Italy with amongst others, productions of The Taming of the Shrew, Coppelia, Romeo & Juliet, Giselle, La Bayadere, Don Quixote, Onegin and Scheherazade.
In 1992, Paul Co-Produced a national tour of the play Revenge with Fiona Fullerton and Patrick Mower which originated at the Theatre Royal, Windsor as well as producing various plays such as the Award winning Shimmer and Plaisirs D’Amour at the Mermaid Theatre, London, The Diary of a Provincial Lady at the King’s Head Theatre, London, the Edinburgh Festival and on tour, Redeeming Vices at the Orange Tree, Richmond and Nijinsky – Death of a Faun at the New End Theatre, Hampstead. He also produced Dame Hilda Bracket (Hinge & Bracket) in By Kind Permission at the Festival Theatre, Chichester as well as on a 30 date national tour and at the Players Theatre, London.
For five years Paul ran his own theatrical agency.
He has worked on 32 pantomime productions and was Associate Producer on pantomimes at the Yvonne Arnaud Theatre, Guildford (four years), Lyceum Theatre, Crewe (seven years), Harlequin Theatre, Redhill (six years), Arts Theatre, Poole (two years), Theatre Royal, Windsor, Hackney Empire and Queens Theatre, Barnstaple working with such artists as Peggy Mount, Wayne Sleep, Frederick Pyne, Christopher Beeny, Lorraine Chase, Simon Parkin, Sandor Eles, Gordon Kaye, Barry Howard, Robin Askwith, Janet Dibley, Robert Powell, Kate O’Mara, Louise English, Dave Benson Phillips, Trevor Bannister, Rula Lenska, Lynette McMorrough, June Brown, Brian Cant, Wendy Craig, Denise Van Outen, Dennis Waterman, Patti Boulaye, John D Collins, Kathy Staff, Brian Croucher, Sarah Vandenbergh, Jeff Stevenson, Christopher Timothy, John Challis, Mark Speight, Mike Holoway, Linzie Hateley, Geoffrey Davies, Patrick Mower, Russell Porter, Ken Morley, Michael Elphick, Sue Devaney, Jean Rogers, Liza Goddard, Alex Langdon, Bob Carolgees, Peter Bowles, Sam Kelly, Issy Van Randwyck, Dora Bryan, Letitia Dean, Patrick Cargill, Paul Valentine, Tim Brooke-Taylor, Rosemarie Ford, Paul Shane, Melvyn Hayes, Mark Curry, Carmen Silvera, Paul Leyshon, Terrence Hillyer and Sonia. Paul also worked on two pantomime seasons at the Thameside Theatre Grays on productions of Cinderella and Snow White & the Seven Dwarfs; Cinderella at the Harlequin Theatre, Redhill, Cinderella at the Theatre Royal Margate, Peter Pan at the Playhouse Theatre, Weston-super-Mare with Dean Gaffney and Gemma Bissix, Cinderella at the Theatre Royal, Windsor and Jack and the Beanstalk at the Theatre Royal, Nottingham for Qdos Pantomimes.
For three years Paul worked on pantomimes at Cambridge Arts Theatre; Aladdin with Wayne Sleep and Liza Goddard, Cinderella and Dame Trott’s Panto Palaver.
2021-22 Paul worked on Cinderella at the Theatre Royal, York.
As Assistant Producer, he has worked on West End productions of Dead Funny with Belinda Lang and Kevin McNally (Savoy Theatre, London); Thing’s We Do For Love with Jane Asher (Gielgud Theatre, London); Elton John’s Glasses with Brian Conley (Queen’s Theatre, London); The Invention of Love with John Wood (Theatre Royal Haymarket, London); Alarms & Excursions with Felicity Kendal (Gielgud Theatre, London); Copenhagen with David Burke, Matthew Marsh and Sara Kestelman (Duchess Theatre, London); Comic Potential with David Soul (Lyric Theatre, London); blue/orange with Bill Nighy, Andrew Lincoln and Chiwetel Ejiofor (Duchess Theatre, London); Feelgood with Henry Goodman and Nigel Planer (Garrick Theatre, London) as well as national tours of Now You Know with Adam Faith, Silhouette with Stephanie Beacham, The Heiress with Frank Finlay, Arcadia with Sharon Maughan and Paul Shelley, Entertaining Mr. Sloane with Barbara Windsor, Marta, Josie and the Chinese Elvis with Belinda Lang, Straight & Narrow with Dora Bryan and Private Lives with Gemma Craven and Tony Anholt.
Paul spent eight years living in Spain, during which time he was Director and Editor of a magazine called Life & Style. He also presented shows at various venues including the film critic Barry Norman in Barry Normans Favourite Films and An Evening with Sir Donald Sinden.
Paul produced three tours of Boycie & Marlene starring John Challis and Sue Holderness; A Gala entitled The Stars Are Coming Out Tonight at the Fairfield Halls, Coydon with a cast of 150 featuring Gary Wilmott, Alvin Stardust, Kate O’Mara, June Brown etc, an extensive tour with Wayne Sleep in Precious Little Sleep, the sell-out gala Carnival of Dreams at the Grand Theatre, Blackpool with a cast of over 200 people featuring Gareth Gates, Jimmy Cricket, Denise Nolan etc and a further Gala entitled Shine Bright Like A Diamond at the Pavilion Theatre, Worthing with a cast of 340 people featuring Ron Moody & Mark Lester who appeared on stage together for the first time ever, Patricia Quinn, Robin Cousins, Annabel Giles, Lee Latchford-Evans, Kacey Barnfield etc.
In 2014 Paul toured nationally with Bill Kenwrights production of Fallen Angels starring Jenny Seagrove and Sara Crowe as well as producing and co-devising a new show called Consider Yourself at Home with Legendary stars of Oliver! Ron Moody and Mark Lester which toured the UK. Other National Tours in 2014 included Last of the Duty Free by Eric Chappell starring Keith Barron, Gwen Taylor, Neil Stacy and Carol Royle for Bill Kenwright Limited, Agatha Christie’s Murder on Air starring Tom Conti & Jenny Seagrove and Michael Attenborough’s production of J.B. Priestley’s Dangerous Corner starring Michael Praed, Colin Buchanan, Kim Thomson, Matt Milne, Lauren Drummond and Finty Williams.
2015 Paul toured the UK and Ireland for six months with a production of Twelve Angry Men by Reginald Rose starring Tom Conti, Andrew Lancel, Denis Lill, Robert Duncan etc as well as a tour of Before the Party with Tom Conti and Gwen Taylor.
In 2016 Paul toured with Bill Kenwrights production of Rehearsal for Murder starring Robert Daws, Amy Robbins, Robert Duncan, Susan Penhaligon, Steven Pinder, Lucy Dixon and Ben Nealon. He also worked on A Right Royal Knees Up – A Gala for The Royal Theatrical Fund starring amongst others Dame Maggie Smith, Sir Derek Jacobi, Imelda Staunton, Michael Ball, Brian Conley, Stephanie Cole, Rob Brydon, Robert Lindsay, Joanna Lumley and Emma Thompson. He worked on Alan Ayckbourn’s How the Other Half Loves which played a 12 week season at the Theatre Royal Haymarket, London and a further 13 weeks at the Duke of York’s, London. He then rejoined the National Tour of Rehearsal for Murder.
2017 Paul spent 11 months touring with Ruth Rendell’s A Judgement in Stone, again for Bill Kenwright Limited and starring Sophie Ward, Andrew Lancel, Mark Wynter, Deborah Grant etc.
Paul has produced 3 star-studded galas at the Theatre Royal, Windsor in support of Mane Chance Sanctuary (2015/16/17). He also produced their 4th gala at the Phoenix Theatre, London (2017).
2018, Paul completed a tour of The Importance of Being Earnest for Original Theatre Company as well as a tour of the new comedy Vulcan 7 starring Adrian Edmondson and Nigel Planer for Theatre Royal, Bath Productions & Jonathan Church Productions.
In 2019, Paul toured the UK & Ireland for six months with a production of Stones in His Pockets by Marie Jones. This was a co-production with Theatre Royal Bath and the Rose Theatre Kingston directed by Lindsay Posner. He also worked on a production of The Night Watch by Sarah Waters at the Devonshire Park Theatre, Eastbourne and the Theatre Royal, York for Original Theatre Company.
2020 A national tour of My Cousin Rachel starring Helen George, Simon Shepherd and Jack Holden for Theatre Royal Bath Productions.
2021 started with the World Premiere of Ben Brown’s play A Splinter of Ice with Oliver Ford Davies, Stephen Boxer and Sara Crowe, directed by Alan Strachan. The production was filmed at the Everyman Theatre, Cheltenham and streamed online before going on a national tour. Paul also toured with a production of The Dresser by Ronald Harwood, starring Julian Clary and Matthew Kelly and directed by Terry Johnson.
2022 will start with a national tour of a new play by Steven Wyatt called Two Cigarettes in the Dark, starring Penelope Keith.