Ben Forster (actor)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Ben Forster
Born (1981-04-24) 24 April 1981 (age 42)
OriginSunderland, England
Occupation(s)Actor, singer, songwriter

Benjamin Edward Forster (born 24 April 1981) is a British actor and singer who won ITV's Superstar competition in 2012.[1] As a result, Forster played the lead role of Jesus in the revival of Andrew Lloyd Webber's rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar in its 2012 arena tour.[2][3][4][5] Forster returned to the role at the end of May to tour Australia through 2013.

Forster would later play the title character in Lloyd Webber's musical adaptation of The Phantom of the Opera.

Career[edit]

Before his success in the Superstar competition, Forster played the role of Doody in Grease and was involved in Thriller – Live in 2009.[6] Singer/songwriter Forster is based in London and performs nationally and internationally. Originally from Sunderland, he was a child singer and actor who won a scholarship at the prestigious Italia Conti Academy in London at 16.

During his training, he was heavily featured in the BBC's prime time fly-on-the-wall documentary The Dream Academy which aired to over 3 million people. The Broccoli family (of James Bond fame) staged the musical La Cava in London the same year, and Forster won a role, to make his West End debut in the production. He then went on to another lead singer role in Lennon and McCartney's West End musical All You Need Is Love. It was during the run of this show that the 20-year-old Forster began songwriting. He then began a solo singing career and signed a record deal with an independent label. He wrote and produced his first ten-song live album, but the recording company declared bankruptcy and Forster's solo musical ambitions were put on hold.

After finishing the 2012 arena tour of Jesus Christ Superstar, Forster went on to play the role of Brad Majors in the 40th anniversary tour of The Rocky Horror Show,[7] alongside Roxanne Pallett, Rhydian, Kristian Lavercombe and Oliver Thornton.

Forster was to reprise the role of Jesus for the North American tour of JCS, joining other recording artists that included Incubus' Brandon Boyd as Judas Iscariot, Destiny's Child's Michelle Williams as Mary Magdalene, 'N Sync's JC Chasez as Pontius Pilate, and Public Image Ltd's John Lydon as King Herod.[8] The North American tour was cancelled on 30 May 2014.[9]

In 2013–14 Forster performed the role of Magaldi in the West End production of Evita in the Dominion Theatre. In October 2015, Forster reprised the role of Buddy in Elf: The Musical at the Dominion Theatre, a role which he originated in the UK première in 2014 in Plymouth. The show ran until January 2016. In 2016 Forster has been portraying the role of The Phantom in London's The Phantom of the Opera. On 6 January 2018, while performing in Elf the Musical, Forster came down off a ladder mid-performance causing the show to stop immediately. It was later revealed that he had broken his ankle in the process,[10] and would not finish his run with the show.[11]

On 30 November 2023, Forster performed "Tell Me It's Not True" with Melanie C at that year's Royal Variety Performance, held at the Royal Albert Hall. The show was televised on 17 December 2023.[12][13]

Stage Credits[edit]

Year(s) Production Role Theatre Location
2000–2001 La Cava Ensemble Piccadilly Theatre West End
2001–2002 All You Need is Love John Lennon Arts Theatre
2007–2009 Grease Doody Piccadilly Theatre
2009–2010 Thriller - Live Ensemble Lyric Theatre
2012–2014 Jesus Christ Superstar Jesus UK Arena Tour
2014 North American Arena Tour
2014 Elf: The Musical Buddy Theatre Royal Plymouth
2014–2015 Evita Magaldi Dominion Theatre West End
2015 The Rocky Horror Show Brad Majors UK National Tour
2015–2016 Elf: The Musical Buddy Dominion Theatre West End
2016–2017 The Phantom of The Opera The Phantom Her Majesty's Theatre
2018 Elf: The Musical Buddy The Lowry Salford
2020 The Phantom of The Opera The Phantom Christmas Theater Greece
2024 Phantom of the Opera Tokyu Theatre Orb Japan

Discography[edit]

Forster released his first album Acoustic Covers in 2012. The album includes acoustic covers of well-known songs from artists like Michael Jackson and Maroon 5.[6] In 2013 he released Acoustic Covers Vol.2.[14] It was co-produced by Ben Forster and Nik Carter and mixed by Jack Birchwood. It featured Luke Higgins on acoustic guitar and Robert Eckland on piano.

In December 2014 he released a double album – together with fellow musical theatre stars Louise Dearman and Kerry Ellis – of Alexander S. Bermange's three-person musical The Route To Happiness. This was made available as a deluxe 2-CD set and to download.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "This morning: Ben is your Superstar". Archived from the original on 5 December 2012. Retrieved 6 January 2013.
  2. ^ "Arena Tour 2012". Jesuschristsuperstar.com. 22 August 2012. Archived from the original on 20 October 2013. Retrieved 19 October 2013.
  3. ^ "They're all Jesus Christ Superstars... Minchin, Moyles and Sporty Spice join TV winner Ben Forster in knockout show – Music – Going Out". London Evening Standard. 22 September 2012. Archived from the original on 22 September 2012. Retrieved 19 October 2013.
  4. ^ Graham, Daniella (27 July 2012). "Ben Forster: Superstar put me on right path after X Factor disappointment | Metro News". Metro. UK. Retrieved 19 October 2013.
  5. ^ Lewis, Anna (26 July 2012). "Ben Forster to play Jesus after winning Andrew Lloyd Webber's Superstar". heatworld.com. Retrieved 19 October 2013.
  6. ^ a b "Ben Forster | Official Website for Ben Forster". Officialbenforster.com. 25 July 2013. Retrieved 19 October 2013.
  7. ^ "Ben Forster On ... Going from Jesus to Rocky – Interviews – 21 Dec 2012". Whatsonstage.com. 21 December 2012. Archived from the original on 2 April 2013. Retrieved 19 October 2013.
  8. ^ "JC Chasez, Michelle Williams and More Team Up for Jesus Christ Superstar North American Tour". E!. 4 April 2014. Retrieved 12 August 2014.
  9. ^ Itzkoff, Dave (31 May 2014). "Anger for 'Jesus Christ Superstar' Cast, and a Black Eye for Its Promoter". The New York Times. Retrieved 12 August 2014.
  10. ^ Bourne, Dianne (7 January 2018). "West End star Ben Forster breaks ankle on stage in Elf Musical". Manchester Evening News. Retrieved 10 February 2021.
  11. ^ Thomas, Angela (9 January 2018). "Ben Forster to miss final week of Elf The Musical after breaking ankle on stage". musicaltheatrereview.com. Retrieved 10 February 2021.
  12. ^ "Royal Variety Performance 2023 performers revealed & How to Watch, including Cher, Hannah Waddingham, Samantha Barks, Beverley Knight, Mel C, Disney 100 & more + First-look photos". West End Theatre. Retrieved 19 December 2023.
  13. ^ Vale, Paul (1 December 2023). "Royal Variety Performance 2023 review". The Stage. Retrieved 19 December 2023.
  14. ^ "Ben Forster - Acoustic Covers Vol. 2". Discogs. 2013.

External links[edit]