‘Fame is not the same as ‘celebrity,’ Mr Foote – therein lies the death of kings’


The outrageous true story of Samuel Foote, Georgian comedy superstar, from the award-winning biographer, actor, and West End playwright Ian Kelly.

In Georgian England there was almost nobody more famous than Samuel Foote. Satirist, impressionist and dangerous comedian, he became a ‘celebrity’ in a city and at a moment in time when the concept of selling ‘personality’ was born. Adored by many, despised by some, Foote found himself at the sharp end of both press attacks…and a surgeon’s knife – probably here in Yorkshire – and lost his leg. In an age obsessed with the anatomy of fame, Foote became an emblem for all that might be wrong with a culture newly obsessed with fame.

Historian, actor, dramatist and author of the biography, Mr Foote’s Other Leg, (winner of the 2013 Theatre Book of the Year Award), Ian Kelly narrates the bizarre career of England’s only one-legged transvestite comedy superstar…and what his story tells us of our debt to 18th century culture.

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Wednesday 25 Apr 2018


Fairfax House

£14.00 (£12.00 Friends & Members) includes post-lecture wine reception, ‘audience with the author’ and book signing.

Friends of Fairfax House