Our Performers

The Vulnerable Children Act 2014 – all our actors, technicians, Director & back office staff are all police checked.

 

Peter Wilson

Peter WilsonPeter is the Founder and Artistic Director of Little Dog Barking Theatre Company. He trained as a classical dancer but after seeing visiting English Mime and Puppet Artist, Cilli Wang, became fascinated with the possibilities of puppet theatre. Determined to know more, study took him to the Puk Theatre of Tokyo, The Bunraku Theatre, National Theatre of Japan, The Central Puppet Theatres of Prague and Moscow and the Cannon Hill Puppet Theatre in the UK. Returning to Australia in 1973 he founded the Tasmanian Puppet Theatre and after ten years at the helm as Artistic Director was appointed Artist in Residence at Curtin University in Western Australia. This was followed by the critically acclaimed production of Doctor Faustus for the 1981 Festival of Perth. Staying on in Perth, Western Australian he established the Spare Parts Theatre and within a short period of time the Company was touring nationally across Australia and internationally to Japan, China, Korea, USA, Canada and Singapore. He has collaborated to create new work with artists from around Australia and internationally from Japan, China, USA and the Czech Republic.

In 1997 he moved to New Zealand where he was appointed Artistic Director of Capital E National Theatre for Children, he remained with the company for 13 years. His commitment to high quality work for children is a testament now to that company’s reputation. Peter has created work as a freelance Director/Devisor for the Shanghai Puppet Theatre, Drak Theatre in the Czech Republic, Handspan Theatre, Java Dance Company, Sydney Metropolitan Opera Company, Footnote Dance and the Marionette Theatre of Australia.

In 2014, his production of Paper Shaper was awarded “Best Foreign Drama “at the First Asian/Pacific Puppet Festival in Nanchong, China and The Company’s production of Duck, Death and the Tulip was awarded “Outstanding Theatre Production” at the 2014 Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
In 2015, he has been invited to direct his play “Children of the Dragon” in Shanghai and to teach senior students at the Shanghai Performing Arts Academy. He has also been commissioned to devise a new work for the 2016 New Zealand International Arts Festival.


Kenny King

Kenny-KingKenny King is an award winning puppeteer and actor. Trained at Toi Whakaari: NZ Drama School, Kenny has been a professional performer for over 15 years. He began his puppetry career at Capital E National Theatre for Children under the tutelage of Peter Wilson. They have enjoyed a fruitful professional relationship ever since. In 2010 Kenny won the inaugural Chapman Tripp Critics Choice Award for his puppetry in Capital E’s “End Game”. Kenny is also an accomplished improviser, having worked for The Improvisors, Wellingtons longest running professional improv troupe since 2005. Kenny lives in Wellington with his partner and seven year old daughter.


Lyndee-Jane Rutherford

Lyndee-Jane RutherfordLyndee-Jane Rutherford has worked extensively as both an actor and a director in theatre and television since graduating as an actor from Toi Whakaari/New Zealand Drama School in 1993.

In the last ten years, she has directed nearly twenty productions. Her production of The Impostar (which she co-wrote) had a season at Circa Theatre in Wellington, it was then selected to do a three week season at the Stella Adler Theatre in Los Angeles, USA. Lyndee-Jane was particularly proud of her production Midsummer – a play with songs which was nominated for a variety of awards at the Chapman Tripp Theatre Awards including Production of the Year and Director of the Year. She also directed and co-created Miss Bronte. Miss Bronte was selected to tour NSW and Victoria in Australia last year. One of Lyndee-Jane’s biggest challenges in her career thus far was the Broadway musical The Mystery of Edwin Drood. Not only did Drood do fabulous business but was nominated for many awards at the Wellington Theatre Awards. Particularly successful at the box office was Ache, a new New Zealand play by Pip Hall. Ache saw Lyndee-Jane nominated for Director of the Year again at the Wellington Theatre Awards. In the middle of 2014 Lyndee-Jane directed Grease for Wellington Musical Theatre and was thrilled to be invited back to direct Mamma Mia. Her production La Casa Azul – inspired by the writings of Frida Kahlo in Wellington did an unprecedented 98% at the box office last year. READ MORE


Simon Haren

Simon HarenSimon has worked extensively in the performing arts industry for the past eight years. A founding member of the critically acclaimed Binge Culture Collective (Artist in Residence, Downstage Theatre, 2013, “Best in Fringe & Creative New Zealand Award for Innovation” for Whales, 2013) Simon has built a strong reputation in creating new devised works through collaboration; having collaborated with over 20 different companies and communities including; JustSpeak, a youth justice advocacy organisation, the Auckland City Mission, as well as organisations working young people with disabilities. In 2014 Simon received the Chapman Tripp Theatre Award for Most Original Production for his co-created and directed show, Dinner With Izzy & Simon. Not a stranger to the world of Puppetry, Simon was the co-creator of New Zealand’s only digital-puppetry performance company ‘Galloping Tales’, as well as having owned Metallica’s Master of Puppets album, before he found a better taste in music.


Debbie Fish

Debbie FishDebbie Fish is a dancer, designer and installation artist based in Wellington whose career in entertainment has taken her from Wellington, to Paris, New York and all around Australia and the Pacific. She holds a Bachelor of Theatre from Victoria University, and studied dance at Dance World Studios, Melbourne where she received a Summer School Scholarship. She also holds a certificate in Acting from the Actor’s College of Theatre & Television, Sydney and received a scholarship to study physical theatre techniques under Sergei Ostrienko in Italy. Career highlights include performing as Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty at Disneyland Paris, Ariel in The Tempest off Matiu-Somes Island, performing in The London Palladium Production of The Sound of Music at The St James, and as the Sleeper in Sleep/Wake at La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club in New York. She has worked with Richard Taylor being a body painted Cyborg in Project Born and on screen has worked with directors including Taika Waititi, Lee Tamahori, and Danny Mulheron.


Matthew Benton

Matthew BentonMatthew Benton is a newcomer to the puppeteering world. After growing up in New Plymouth, heavily involved in the theatre and music scene, he moved down to Wellington to attend the New Zealand School of Music where he completed a Bachelor of Music Majoring in Performance Jazz Saxophone. Whilst working as a professional saxophonist with bands such as The Black Seeds, The Thomas Oliver Band and The Benson Brothers, Matthew studied a post graduate Diploma in Teaching Music and Drama from Victoria University. He continued to have a keen interest in the performing arts, some acting highlights include Peter Jacksons King Kong and The Lovely Bones. He has just returned from an inspiring six month trip around the world with his partner Ria and is very much looking forward to working with the Little Dog Barking Theatre Company in Aotearoa and abroad.


Tony Black – Technician

Tony BlackTony Black is a designer and technician based in Wellington. Since graduating from Victoria University of Wellington with a Bachelor of Arts with Honours in Theatre studies, Tony has worked extensively with local artists and for BATS Theatre and Circa Theatre. Tony is a founding member of the Making Friends Collective.