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Phelim McDermott - artist at English National Opera

Phelim McDermott


Phelim McDermott has been directing and performing since 1984. In 1996 he co-founded Improbable.

Previously for ENO: Aida, SatyagrahaThe Perfect American, Così fan tutte.

Career Highlights

Productions with Improbable include: The multi-award-winning 70 Hill LaneLifegame, Animo, Coma, Spirit, Sticky, Cinderella, The Hanging Man, Theatre of Blood, Panic, Beauty and the Beast, The Still and The Tempest.

Other directing: Most recently he directed A Christmas Carol in the West End; he also directed Alex (Arts Theatre and tour); The Ghost Downstairs (Leicester Haymarket); Dr Faustus and Improbable Tales (Nottingham Playhouse); The Servant of Two Masters, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, The Government Inspector (West Yorkshire Playhouse); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (English Shakespeare Company in 1996/97, TMA Award for Best Touring Production). He co-wrote with Lee Simpson and appeared in Get Off My Foot. He directed Shockheaded Peter (London; Little Schubert Theatre, Off Broadway) with Julian Crouch; a junk opera collaboration with The Tiger Lilies for Cultural Industry (Olivier Award for Best Entertainment, TMA Best Director Award and Critics Circle Best Designer Award).

Awards and achievements: In 2003 he was awarded a NESTA fellowship to research new ways of rehearsing and creating theatre using improvisation and process-oriented conflict facilitation techniques. As part of this work he has facilitated many Open Space Technology events. He was made an Honorary Doctor of Middlesex University in 2007.

Last updated: 30th November 2017