The Info List - Alan Howard

Alan MacKenzie Howard, CBE (5 August 1937 – 14 February 2015) was an English actor. He was a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company
Royal Shakespeare Company
from 1966 to 1983, and played leading roles at the Royal National Theatre between 1992 and 2000.


1 Early life 2 Theatre career

2.1 1958–1965 2.2 1966–1979 2.3 1980–2011

3 Theatre awards 4 Television 5 Film 6 Personal life 7 Partial filmography 8 References 9 External links

Early life[edit] Howard was born in Croydon, Surrey, the only son of actor Arthur Howard and his wife Jean Compton (Mackenzie). His uncle was Leslie Howard, the film star,[1] while his aunt was the casting director Irene Howard. On his mother's side he was also a great-nephew of the actress Fay Compton[2] and the novelist Sir Compton Mackenzie. He was educated at the independent school Ardingly College
Ardingly College
in Ardingly, West Sussex. Theatre career[edit] 1958–1965[edit] Alan Howard made his first stage appearance at the Belgrade Theatre, Coventry, in April 1958, as a footman in Half In Earnest. He remained with the company until 1960, where his roles included Frankie Bryant in Arnold Wesker's Roots in June 1959. The production first transferred to the Royal Court Theatre
Royal Court Theatre
and then the Duke of York's Theatre in July 1959, where he made his West End debut in the role. Returning to the Belgrade he played Dave Simmonds in Wesker's I'm Talking About Jerusalem in April 1960. This was followed by Monty Blatt in Chicken Soup with Barley at the Royal Court during June and July 1960, completing the Wesker Trilogy with a revival of Roots and the transfer of I’m Talking About Jerusalem (as 1st Removal Man). At the Pembroke Theatre in Croydon
he played Kenny Baird in A Loss of Roses during January 1961, and the following month a return to the Royal Court as de Piraquo in Tony Richardson's production of Thomas Middleton and William Rowley's Jacobean tragedy The Changeling, then little known.[3] In 1962 he was cast as the Duke of Ferrara in John Fletcher's The Chances and Nearchus in John Ford's The Broken Heart, both at the Chichester Festival Theatre
Chichester Festival Theatre
in its inaugural season. A year later in April 1963 he played Loveless in Virtue in Danger, a musical version of Vanbrugh's The Relapse, first at the Mermaid Theatre
Mermaid Theatre
before transferring to the Strand Theatre in June 1963. He ended the year playing Fotheringham in Anthony Powell's Afternoon Men at the New Arts Theatre in August 1963. Engaged by H.M. Tennent Productions, 1964 brought him the challenge of an international tour of South America
South America
and Europe
[1] playing both Bassanio in The Merchant of Venice
The Merchant of Venice
and Lysander in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Staged by Wendy Toye and starring Ralph Richardson, the productions were first seen at the Theatre Royal, Brighton
Theatre Royal, Brighton
[2]. At the Phoenix Theatre in May 1965 he was "boldly playing" Simon Challoner in Julian Mitchell’s fine stage adaptation of A Heritage and Its History [3]; ending the year at the Nottingham Playhouse
Nottingham Playhouse
as Angelo in Measure for Measure
Measure for Measure
and Bolingbroke in Richard II, co-starring with Judi Dench
Judi Dench
and Edward Woodward. 1966–1979[edit] Howard first joined the Royal Shakespeare Company
Royal Shakespeare Company
at Stratford-upon-Avon
in 1966, cast as Orsino in Twelfth Night, Burgundy in Henry V and Lussurioso in The Revenger's Tragedy. Subsequent RSC roles, all at Stratford unless otherwise stated, included:

Jacques in As You Like It
As You Like It
1967 Young Fashion in The Relapse
The Relapse
(Aldwych Theatre) 1967 Edgar in King Lear, Achilles in Troilus and Cressida
Troilus and Cressida
and Benedick (to Janet Suzman's Beatrice) in Much Ado About Nothing
Much Ado About Nothing
1968 (these three roles also in Aldwych revivals) Jacques in As You Like It
As You Like It
(Los Angeles) 1968 Bartholomew Cokes in Bartholomew Fair and Lussurioso in The Revenger's Tragedy (both Aldwych) 1969 Benedick in Much Ado About Nothing
Much Ado About Nothing
(Los Angeles) 1969 Mephistophilis in Doctor Faustus, title role in Hamlet, Theseus/Oberon in A Midsummer Night’s Dream
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
and Ceres in The Tempest
The Tempest
1970 Theseus/Oberon in A Midsummer Night’s Dream
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
(New York debut at the Billy Rose Theatre) January 1971 Theseus/Oberon in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Nikolai in Maxim Gorky's Enemies, Dorimant in The Man of Mode
The Man of Mode
and The Envoy in The Balcony (Aldwych) 1971-72 Cyril Jackson in The Black and White Minstrels by C.P. Taylor (Not RSC - Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh) July 1972 [4] Toured as Theseus/Oberon (visiting Eastern and Western Europe, the USA, Japan and Australia) August 1972-August 1973

Howard then played Eric von Stroheim
Eric von Stroheim
in The Ride Across Lake Constance at the Hampstead
Theatre in November 1973, transferring to the Mayfair Theatre in December; and again played Cyril in The Black and White Minstrels, revived at Hampstead
in January 1974, before returning to the RSC, where his roles included:

Carlos II in The Bewitched Aldwych, May 1974 Title role in Henry V, and Prince Hal in the two parts of Henry IV Stratford 1975; Aldwych, January 1976 Rover in Wild Oats, co-starring with Jeremy Irons, Aldwych, December 1976 Title role in Henry V, also the title roles in the three parts of Henry VI and Coriolanus
Stratford 1977; Newcastle Season, at the Theatre Royal, Newcastle upon Tyne
Newcastle upon Tyne
13 February – 25 March 1978; and Aldwych, summer 1978 Mark Antony in Antony and Cleopatra
Antony and Cleopatra
Stratford, October 1978; Aldwych, July 1979 Chepurnoy in Maxim Gorky's Children of the Sun Aldwych, October 1979


Title roles in Richard II and Richard III, Stratford 1980; Aldwych, November 1981 The Hollow Crown, devised by John Barton, RSC Fortune Theatre July–August 1981 Pleasure and Repentance, devised by Terry Hands, RSC Fortune Theatre July–August 1981 Gennady in The Forest by Alexander Ostrovsky, The Other Place, Stratford 1981; RSC Donmar Warehouse, July 1981; Aldwych February 1982 Halder in Good by C.P. Taylor, music by George Fenton, RSC Donmar Warehouse, September 1981; Aldwych April 1982; Booth Theatre, New York October 1982 (141 NY performances).

Alan Howard then left the Royal Shakespeare Company. Subsequent performances included:

Geoffrey in Winter by David Mowatt (rehearsed reading) Orange Tree Theatre July 1983 War Music by Christopher Logue from Homer's Iliad, Almeida Theatre 1984, followed by a British Council tour of the UK and Greece Nikolai Pesiakoff in Breaking the Silence by Stephen Poliakoff, revived at the Mermaid Theatre
Mermaid Theatre
May–November 1985 Johan in Ingmar Bergman's Scenes from a Marriage
Scenes from a Marriage
(with Penny Downie as Marianne), Chichester and Wyndham's Theatre
Wyndham's Theatre
November 1990 Henry Higgins in Bernard Shaw's Pygmalion (with Frances Barber as Eliza) National Theatre, Olivier April 1992 Kings adapted from Homer
by Christopher Logue, National Theatre, Cottesloe, September 1992; and Tricycle Theatre, April 1997 Title role in Macbeth
(with Anastasia Hille as Lady Macbeth) National Theatre, Olivier, April 1993 George in Jean Cocteau's Les Parents terribles, National Theatre, Lyttelton May 1994 William in Meredith Oakes' The Editing Process, National Theatre Studio at the Royal Court, November 1994 Calogero di Spelta in Eduardo De Filippo's La Grande Magia, National Theatre, Lyttelton, July 1995 The Player King in Tom Stoppard's Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, National Theatre, Lyttelton, December 1995 Title role in The Oedipus
Plays: Oedipus
the King and Oedipus
at Colonus adapted from Sophocles
by Ranjit Bolt, Athens Festival at Epidaurus
and National Theatre of Greece, Olivier, September 1996 Vladimir in Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot, Old Vic Theatre, June 1997 Title role in King Lear
King Lear
(with Victoria Hamilton as Cordelia), Old Vic, September 1997 Roman Khludov in Mikhail Bulgakov's Flight, National Theatre, Olivier, February 1998 Man in Edward Albee's The Play About the Baby, Almeida Theatre, September 1998 Dr Austin Sloper in The Heiress, play adapted by Ruth and Augustus Goetz from the novel by Henry James, National Theatre, Lyttelton, June 2000 Dr Schoning in Lulu, adapted by Nicholas Wright from the play by Frank Wedekind, Almeida at King's Cross, March 2001 Teiresias in Sophocles' Oedipus
in a 'raw new version' by Frank McGuinness, co-starring Ralph Fiennes
Ralph Fiennes
and Clare Higgins, directed by Jonathan Kent, National Theatre, Olivier, from 8 October 2008 [5] Sir Peter Teazle in The School for Scandal
The School for Scandal
(directed by Deborah Warner) at the Barbican Centre, 2011.

A complete listing of Alan Howard's theatre credits, including early work at the Belgrade Theatre, Coventry, appears on his career website, qv.[4] Howard played all Shakespeare's consecutive eponymous English kings; though the distinction depends on a Henry IV played (as Henry Bolingbroke) in Richard II (at Nottingham) rather than in Henry IV, Part 1. Theatre awards[edit] Howard won his first Plays and Players award in 1969, voted by the London
theatre critics as the Most Promising Actor
in the RSC repertoire. His second came in 1977, again voted for by the London critics, when he won as Best Actor
for his RSC performances in Wild Oats, the three parts of Henry VI and Coriolanus. In 1981 he again received the Plays and Players critics' award for Best Actor
for his roles in Richard II and Good by C.P. Taylor. He twice gained the Evening Standard Award Best Actor
trophy for his performances in Coriolanus
(1978) and Good (1981). He also won the Society of West End Theatre award for Best Actor (1976) for his performances as Prince Hal in Henry IV, Part One
Henry IV, Part One
and Part Two and Henry V and in 1978 as Best Actor
in a Revival for Coriolanus
(these are now known as the Olivier Awards). Other awards include the 1980 Variety Club
Variety Club
Best Actor
Award for the title roles in Richard II and Richard III; and the Drama magazine (British Theatre Association) Award for Best Actor
(joint) 1981, for Richard II, Good and The Forest. Television[edit] Television performances include Philoctetes, The Way of the World and Comets Among the Stars. He played a spymaster in the Thames Television
Thames Television
six-hour spy story Cover, written by Philip Mackie, 1981; and played John Osborne's father, Tom Osborne, in A Better Class of Person, Thames 1985. He also played the title role of Coriolanus
in the 1984 BBC Shakespeare production. Between 1989 and 1990 Howard played the lead character of Sam McCready, a semi-retired intelligence agent, in a series of television movies called Frederick Forsyth Presents. He was also seen in such series as Notorious Woman, The Return of Sherlock Holmes, Midsomer Murders and Foyle's War. He was Spenlow in David Copperfield (2000) and Maurice Wilkins
Maurice Wilkins
in Life Story. Film[edit] He made occasional film appearances, including a significant role in Peter Greenaway’s The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover (1989) as Michael, "The Lover" who carries on a doomed affair with "The Wife" Georgina played by Helen Mirren.[5] He also supplied the voice of the Ring in The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring and The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.[6] Personal life[edit] He first married actress and theatre designer Stephanie Hinchcliff Davies in 1965 (marriage dissolved). He met his second wife, the novelist and journalist Sally Beauman, when she interviewed him about his performance as Hamlet
at Stratford in 1970. They became lovers not long afterwards, and married in 2004. They had one son and two grandchildren. Howard was appointed CBE (Commander of the Order of the British Empire) in 1998. Howard died on 14 February 2015 at the Royal Free Hospital
Royal Free Hospital
in Hampstead, London, of pneumonia.[7][8] Partial filmography[edit]

Year Title Role Notes

1961 Victim Frank

1963 The V.I.P.s Second Reporter Uncredited

1964 The Americanization of Emily Port Ensign

1965 The Heroes of Telemark Oli

1968 Work Is a Four-Letter Word Reverend Mort

1974 Notorious Woman Prosper Merimee TV

1984 Oxford Blues Simon Rutledge

1984 The Tragedy of Coriolanus Caius Marcius TV

1986 The Return of Sherlock Holmes The Duke of Holderness TV Episode: "The Priory School"

1987 A Perfect Spy Jack Brotherhood TV

1987 Life Story Maurice Wilkins TV

1989 Agatha Christie's Poirot Benedict Farley/Hugo Cornworthy TV Episode: "The Dream"

1989 The Return of the Musketeers Oliver Cromwell

1989 Strapless Mr. Cooper

1989 The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover Michael (The Lover)

1990 Antigone/Rites of Passion Haemon & Polynices Voice

1990 Frederic Forsyth Presents: A Casualty of War Sam McReady TV

1992 Dakota Road Alan Brandon

1993 The Secret Rapture Tom French

2000 David Copperfield Mr. Spenlow TV

2001 Midsomer Murders Owen August TV Episode: "Dark Autumn"

2001 The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring Sauron
/ The One Ring Voice

2003 Death in Holy Orders Father Sebastian Morell TV

2003 Foyle's War Stephen Beck TV Episode: "War Games"

2003 The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King Sauron
/ The One Ring Voice

2012 Parade's End Tietjens Senior TV (final television appearance)


^ Michael Coveney " Alan Howard obituary", The Guardian, 18 February 2015 ^ Sheridan Morley Plays and Players, September 1969 ^ Julius Novick "The Changeling", Encore, May–June 1961, reproduced on Alan Howartd's website ^ Alan Howard career: website ^ The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover at Rotten Tomatoes ^ "Fellowship2 at alanhoward.org. Retrieved 19 February 2015 ^ http://www.officiallondontheatre.co.uk/news/latest-news/article/item273736/olivier-award-winner-alan-howard-dies/ ^ Alan Howard, mainstay of RSC and National Theatre, dies aged 77


Who’s Who in the Theatre 17th edition, Gale (1981) ISBN 0-8103-0235-7 Theatre Record and its annual Indexes The Best of Plays and Players 1969–1983 edited by Peter Roberts, Methuen Drama (1989)

External links[edit]

Alan Howard career: website Alan Howard on IMDb Alan Howard at the Internet Broadway Database
Internet Broadway Database
Alan Howard at the National Theatre

v t e

Evening Standard Theatre Award for Best Actor


Richard Burton
Richard Burton
(1955) Paul Scofield
Paul Scofield
(1956) Laurence Olivier
Laurence Olivier
(1957) Michael Redgrave
Michael Redgrave
(1958) Eric Porter (1959)


Alec Guinness
Alec Guinness
(1960) Christopher Plummer
Christopher Plummer
(1961) Paul Scofield
Paul Scofield
(1962) Michael Redgrave
Michael Redgrave
(1963) Nicol Williamson
Nicol Williamson
(1964) Ian Holm
Ian Holm
(1965) Albert Finney
Albert Finney
(1966) Laurence Olivier
Laurence Olivier
(1967) Alec McCowen
Alec McCowen
(1968) Nicol Williamson
Nicol Williamson


John Gielgud
John Gielgud
(1970) Alan Bates
Alan Bates
(1971) Laurence Olivier
Laurence Olivier
(1972) Alec McCowen
Alec McCowen
(1973) John Wood (1974) John Gielgud
John Gielgud
(1975) Albert Finney
Albert Finney
(1976) Donald Sinden
Donald Sinden
(1977) Alan Howard (1978) Warren Mitchell
Warren Mitchell


Tom Courtenay
Tom Courtenay
(1980) Alan Howard (1981) Alec McCowen
Alec McCowen
(1982) Derek Jacobi
Derek Jacobi
(1983) Ian McKellen
Ian McKellen
(1984) Antony Sher (1985) Albert Finney
Albert Finney
(1986) Michael Gambon
Michael Gambon
(1987) Eric Porter (1988) Ian McKellen
Ian McKellen


Richard Harris
Richard Harris
(1990) John Wood (1991) Nigel Hawthorne (1992) Ian Holm
Ian Holm
(1993) Tom Courtenay
Tom Courtenay
(1994) Michael Gambon
Michael Gambon
(1995) Paul Scofield
Paul Scofield
(1996) Ian Holm
Ian Holm
(1997) Kevin Spacey
Kevin Spacey
(1998) Stephen Dillane
Stephen Dillane


Simon Russell Beale
Simon Russell Beale
(2000) Alex Jennings (2001) Simon Russell Beale
Simon Russell Beale
(2002) Michael Sheen
Michael Sheen
(2003) Richard Griffiths
Richard Griffiths
(2004) Simon Russell Beale
Simon Russell Beale
(2005) Rufus Sewell
Rufus Sewell
(2006) Patrick Stewart
Patrick Stewart
(2007) Chiwetel Ejiofor
Chiwetel Ejiofor
(2008) Mark Rylance
Mark Rylance


Rory Kinnear
Rory Kinnear
(2010) Benedict Cumberbatch
Benedict Cumberbatch
and Jonny Lee Miller
Jonny Lee Miller
(2011) Simon Russell Beale
Simon Russell Beale
(2012) Adrian Lester and Rory Kinnear
Rory Kinnear
(2013) Tom Hiddleston
Tom Hiddleston
(2014) James McAvoy
James McAvoy
(2015) Ralph Fiennes
Ralph Fiennes
(2016) Andrew Garfield
Andrew Garfield

v t e

Laurence Olivier
Laurence Olivier
Award for Actor
of the Year in a Revival

Alan Howard (1976) Ian McKellen
Ian McKellen
(1977) Alan Howard (1978) Warren Mitchell
Warren Mitchell
(1979) Jonathan Pryce
Jonathan Pryce
(1980) Daniel Massey (1981) Stephen Moore (1982) Derek Jacobi
Derek Jacobi
(1983) Ian McKellen
Ian McKellen
(1984) Brian Cox (1988)

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 44504891 LCCN: n94122050 ISNI: 0000 0001 2130 5725 SUDOC: 151168911 BNF: cb14071182v (data) BNE: XX4678639 SN


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