In 1989, Ellis joined the actors company of the newly opened Museum of the Moving Image, where he went on to help train actors. He still gives presentations and workshops for the BFI, particularly in his area of special interest, Victorian ‘Magic Lantern Shows’. In this context Ellis performed in the ‘Cinema 100’ celebrations, notably at the launch before the Prince of Wales. (See “A further light on History”)
His involvement with ‘living history’ theatre has led to Ellis setting up ‘Here be Dragons Legacy Theatre’ a loose confederation of professional actors, musicians and entertainers who specialize in the authentic re-creation of historic personalities and events. Through this group Ellis has furthered his concept of a degree of excellence in using ‘Living History’ to inform and entertain, particularly at festivals and historically themed events. (See “What is ‘Legacy Theatre’?”)
Ellis and other members of his company have recently been enjoying an increasing amount of TV and other media work. (See “Picturing History”).
A trained singer and experienced actor, Ellis has also acquired a fine list of credits for professional stage performances, ranging from Pantomime to Opera. He has worked extensively in musicals including taking principle roles in nearly all the operettas of Gilbert and Sullivan. Other roles have included Macheath in ‘Beggar’s Opera’, Capt Von Trapp in ‘Sound of Music’, the Devil in Dvorak’s ‘The Devil and Kate’, the eponymous Paul Bunyan in Briton’s opera, Falstaff in ‘Sir John in Love’, and Judge Turpin in ‘Sweeney Todd’.
Ellis is also a writer and director. He combines all the above with being ceremonial Verger at St James Garlickhythe, and Beadle of Vintry Ward, both in the City of London.