Four Of Swords

Associate Artist 2019 | Four Of Swords


(Photo credit on previous page Matt Austin)

Sarah White and Philip Kingslan John are the founders and co-creative directors of Four of Swords.

They formed the company for the following reasons:

  • To create immersive, dynamic adaptations of classic stories!
  • To use theatrical story-telling techniques in unusual and evocative spaces!
  • To bring together the media of cinema, theatre and live music!
  • To create intimate performances with mass appeal and educational value!

After months of careful planning, in 2013 Four of Swords exploded onto the South West theatre scene with two stonking shows: Jekyll & Hyde at Poltimore House, and Gawain & the Green Knight, first performed at Exeter Phoenix, and then at Exeter Cathedral.

Since then, they have created eight original shows, performed in ten incredibly atmospheric venues, as well as numerous schools, and to over 10,000 audience members. 

They have developed their film-making skills. Working with celebrated local film makers such as Luke Jeffrey, Jon Seal, Ed Jobling of Forkbeard Fantasy, and Ashley Thorpe, they have delivered the Phoenix’s annual Summer Film School since 2016. Sarah has appeared as an actress in a number of local films and Phil was Assistant Director and Animation Supervisor on the recently released, feature-length documentary The Teachers’ Resistance, directed by Jon Seal. In 2018 they took the Summer Film School format to Shanghai, and created a short film with Chinese students of Studio Education.

Sarah and Philip have equally established themselves as innovators in the field of theatre in education. They are both trainers with Pearson Edexcel, and have worked with Cambridge University Press to produce digital content for AQA Examination Board. Four of Swords has built a diverse portfolio of collaborations with partners such as the Royal Albert Memorial Museum, Devon Libraries, English Heritage, National Trust, Exeter and Plymouth Universities, the Pelican Project, Ripple Recovery Group and the Wellcome Trust.

Phil and Sarah would like to thank Exeter Phoenix for its ongoing support and for its provision of amazing artistic opportunities for the city of Exeter. They are thrilled to be recognised as Associate Artists. 


Find out more about our Associate Artist scheme here >>