• Philip Dehany

“Enough is enough...” My response to Alex Belfield’s attack on Ben Hewis.

Enough is enough.

I have ran That Stagey Blog for almost a year now.

I started it as a labour of love, my love for theatre.

Within this, I have always restrained from “reviewing” shows as such, I don’t award stars, I don’t tear a show to pieces. I do, try to be objective and use my blog to comment on what I have seen that has influenced me.

I run my blog solely with no support or help, and make no money from it, I receive no sponsorship, which allows me full editorial control and objectivity.

Often, I am approached by people to help promote their show, whether by retweeting them, seeing their show or doing an interview with them.

I welcome this, and feel flattered to have been asked to help.

Often, I am tagged by people, who without asking just want and expect me to retweet their posts. I find this rude.

I had never met Alex Belfield. Had never heard of him or Celebrity Radio until he began tagging me in his posts.

Out of sheer curiosity I clicked on the links he was attaching me to, and was immediately and honestly appalled.

His “reviews” of shows were misguided, uniformed, and ridiculous.

As a blogger, I personally battle when it comes to being supportive but objective with any write up I make about a show I see. With Alex Belfield he appeared unnecessarily disparaging, and deliberately aggravated.

I was irritated that Alex, who I had never met had the audacity to expect me to retweet him, I wondered why he had even assumed I had influence, or the inclination to support or endorse his negative and disaggregated option.

I refused to engage with Alex or leverage his platform. He continued to tag me in his posts, hoping that I would support him.

In a tweet that Alex has now removed, where again he was trying to enlist me to support and share, I had enough and responded saying:

“Please stop tagging me in your posts. I have no interest in watching your vlogs or sharing them, your negative tone is always incredibly derogatory and your information is consistently under researched and uninformed.”

Despite this gentle warning, Alex subsequently tagged me in a post in which he openly attacks Ben Hewis.

I have known Ben and shared his passion and support for our industry for many years. Recently, his sole ambition and achievement to raise money to offer free tickets for many people to see ‘Emilia’ in the West End, is one of the single most commendable and admirable movements I have recognised within our community.

Ben inspired and reminded me of the sense of community, that anyone who is lucky enough to go to a drama school and into this industry values. The word defines itself “community’.

Alex Belfield is not part of our community, and is not welcome in it.

He is an opportunist who seeks to align him self with the likes of Jeremy Kyle and Katie Hopkins, who seem to prefer to shock and ignite controversy and conflict.

This is in direct conflict with any prime objectives for a community.

I simply ask Alex this, why do you continue to align yourself with an industry that does not welcome you? Why do you value discrediting people? Attacking people? Fighting people? Conflict? How many more people need to block you before you recognise that your opinion is not valid or welcome? How many more unnecessary attempts to elevate your own profile must you try?

Please. By all means continue your attempt to discredit Ben Hewis, and sue for libel and defamation, but recognise that I stand side by side in support of Ben.

Please. Just stop. Please stop tagging me in your posts. Please stop making your uniformed reviews. Please stop attacking the people who care about the this community when you so clearly don’t.


Philip Dehany

That Stagey Blog.

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