Daniel Vanheyst


  • Zachery & the Storytelling Stones
  • The Wizard that Was… and Was Not
  • The Missadventurous Perils of Pauline
  • Alberto the Dancing Alligator (remount) – Sterling Award Nominee!
  • Fiddle Cat


What’s your earliest memory of the theatre?

Grade 9 I performed a two-hander mime piece called The Puppet Master as part of Elton Collegiate’s (Forrest, Manitoba) annual Drama night. I was, of course, a puppet! Here I am almost 45 years later, making puppets!

What’s been your favourite role with Kompany?

I loved designing and building set, costumes, and puppets for The Wizard Who Was, Or Was Not.

What’s your favourite children’s book?

When I was a kid, I loved the Curious George books by Margaret and H. A. Rey. Because it was my son Jack’s favorite at 3 or 4 years old, I also love a little board book called Lowly Worm by Richard Scarry

What’s your favourite sea creature?

The Hermit Crab, who carries his “borrowed” house on his back!

What’s your favourite thing to eat?

Pea soup! And it has to be sludgey thick with peas and lots of ham bits.

Which would you rather have for a pet: a dog, a cat, a fish, or a bird?

I have a cat named Chloe, who loves me to bits, and some fish. Two of my fish are Kooi, and they are each about a foot long! I don’t want a bird (my daughter Nonnie’s parrot is a nasty creature), and I don’t want a dog, because I’m not home enough to keep a dog happy.

Which would you rather have for a pet: a shark, a tiger, an alligator, or a t-rex?

An alligator, of course, because I could name him Alberto. I had a lot of fun designing Alberto the Dancing Alligator!


Would you rather live in a medieval castle, a futuristic space station or a jurassic jungle?

A medieval castle. The costumes are better. And they’re more likely to have pea soup.

If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would it be?

I’m going to Budapest, Hungary in April this spring, and I’m pretty excited about that!

What’s your favourite memory of working with Kompany?

Going to Oliver School with Jan and the cast and getting help from the kids to finish writing and designing Woof.

We know you’re secretly just a very tall 10 year old, but what do you think is something you’ve really carried with you from childhood?

I still love making detailed miniature worlds—which I do each time I create a new set design and build the scale model that shows the design to the other artists and craftspeople. When I was 4 or 5 I got my first Matchbox car. We called them “dinky toys” back then. It was a red Austin Healey convertible. I think it is still in the toy-box my Mom keeps at her house for the great-grandkids. And I still want a real red Austin Healey convertible!