Ben Forster

The Phantom

Ben grew up in the UK city of Sunderland in the mid 1980’s.  At the age of 16, this real life Billy Elliot won a scholarship to attend the Italia Conti Performing Arts Academy. Ben’s transition from Sunderland schoolboy to the theatre world of London was captured in a successful prime time BBC1 documentary, ‘The Dream Academy’.

Since debuting in his first West End musical at the age of eighteen – La Cava, created by the Broccoli family of James Bond fame, Ben has had a successful theatre career. He has performed in numerous shows including Grease in the West End and international tour, Lennon and McCartney’s All You Need is Love and was part of the original cast of the hugely successful West End production, Thriller Live, taking the show from London onto international tours.

Ben shot to fame in 2012 after winning the ITV1 show, ‘Superstar’ – Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber’s TV talent search for Jesus in the rock arena musical, Jesus Christ Superstar. Ben competed against thousands and performed live to millions throughout the series. His talent and loveable personality won the hearts of the British public, who selected him to go on to win the coveted role and star alongside Spice Girl Melanie C, Tim Minchin and Chris Moyles, in a spectacular arena tour of the UK. Owing to the huge success of the production, Universal Pictures produced a movie version of the show which played in cinemas across the world, became a best selling DVD and was shown on British television.  In 2013 the show toured Australia, before Ben then returned back to the UK with the show, winning critical acclaim once more for his portrayal of the role. In between these tours Ben starred as Brad Majors in the reinvented 40th Anniversary production of Richard O’Brien’s The Rocky Horror Show for which he achieved rave reviews.

Ben has also produced two acoustic albums, which have won him international acclaim and established him as a successful recording artist. He is currently writing an original third album.

During 2014 Ben returned to the West End to guest star in the role of Magaldi in the hit musical Evita alongside Marti Pellow for its run at the Dominion Theatre. And last year, Ben returned to the West End stage reprising his role as Brad Majors in the special celebrity run of The Rocky Horror Show, alongside the creator and theatrical legend Richard O’Brien. The show was viewed by thousands after being broadcast live from the Playhouse Theatre to cinemas all over Europe.

Ben has most recently assumed the leading role of Buddy the Elf in Elf The Musical and was the first actor to do so outside the USA. Elf ran at the Dominion Theatre over the Christmas period and Ben has garnered considerable critical acclaim for his performance as Buddy, and was nominated for Best Actor in a Musical at the What’s on Stage Awards.

Ben is incredibly excited to be taking on the prestigious role of The Phantom this year.