MyFamilyClub is really honoured to bring you our next inspirational piece getting to know Oliver Lansley of Les Petit Theatre Company. As well as a founder of Les Petits, Oliver is an actor, writer, director and Artistic Director of Les Enfants Terribles, which he founded in 2002.
Let’s meet Oliver…
As an actor he’s best known for playing Kenny Everett in the BAFTA-winning The Best Possible Taste which earned him a Best Actor nomination at the RTS Awards. Other credits include: The Wrong Mans, Sherlock and Misfits.
Oliver’s first published play Immaculate was listed in the top ten best-selling plays at Samuel French London in 2010, other published works include: Les Enfants Terribles: Collected Plays, Flies and The Infant.
LET’s work includes; The Terrible Infants, The Trench, Ernest and the Pale Moon, The Vaudevillains and most recently, the Olivier Award nominated Alice’s Adventures Underground – Oliver writes and is directly involved in all aspects of the company’s output, often also as Director.
A past winner of Channel Four’s Multi-Talented Award and a Broadcast magazine HOTSHOT. Oliver co-created BBC 2 series Whites, and Rose d’Or nominated ITV2 series FM. He has written on numerous other productions including Nick Frost series Mr Sloan; Rotters starring Comedy Award Winners Dr Brown, Sam Simmons, Jon Kearns and Frank Skinner; and Alan Davies’s Little Cracker for Sky, which he also directed.
Describe a typical day for you?
I’m very lucky as every day is different. Yesterday I spent the day in rehearsals for The First Hippo on the Moon where we were singing songs about pigs and watching a giant puppet gorilla leap around. Last night we were running a big event for Benefit make-up so I was at that. This morning I had breakfast with my agent and then went home to re-work the script for the Les Enfants Terribles’ Sherlock Holmes Experience which we created for Madame Tussauds. Right now I’m off into town for a couple of meetings about some television projects I’m working on. So I get a good variety.
What do you feel are your biggest achievements to date?
Starting Les Enfants Terribles when I was 19 years old and watching it grow into the company it’s become – being nominated for an Olivier award last year for Alice’s Adventures Underground was lovely. Also, being nominated for Best Actor at the RTS awards for when I played Kenny Everett in a film about his life (Best Possible Taste: The Kenny Everett Story) and writing a TV project for HBO last year was pretty cool too.
What are your ambitions in life?
Love, joy and contentment.
Where do you see yourself in 5-10 years’ time?
I hope I’m still having fun, however that may be. I also hope that I’m still excited by my work, be it in theatre, film, television – as an actor, writer or director- but I didn’t get into this game to make ten year plans!
What’s the most effective strategy for installing confidence in yourself?
Everything you need to get on in life comes from within. Take responsibility for your own destiny and your own happiness. Work as hard as you can and believe in what you do – the only thing you can control is yourself, so focus your energy on that. Surround yourself with great people and embrace collaboration.
What advice would you give to anyone launching a similar business?
Make sure you want it enough. In the early days you will need to put everything you have into it -time, money, passion, life- so you have to really want and believe in it. It has to be about the work so that even if it doesn’t bring you money/fame/success it was still worth it.
Everything comes down to the quality you produce- if it’s good enough and you keep going eventually it will be recognised. But you have to make sure that it is there – that is the foundation of it all.
Finally, happiness is…
Big house, roaring fire, good music, nice wine and a dining table full of kids, friends and family.
Twitter: @OliLansley @PetitsTheatre