Simon Callow

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9th February 2012 - 7.30pm

Charles Dickens & The Great Theatre of the World    

Actor Simon Callow, well known for playing Charles Dickens on film, television and stage, will be reading excerpts from his new book, a celebration of the impact of the theatre on Dickens' life and work. 

Coinciding with the 2012 celebrations of Dickens' bicentenary, ‘Charles Dickens & The Great Theatre of the World’ is an entertaining biography which reveals an original genius, and offers a compelling insight into a life driven by performance.  Unique in so many ways, Dickens is the only major novelist to have been a compelling performer in his own right, playing to spellbound audiences of up to four thousand all over the English-speaking world. Theatre was central to his life, from his earliest years as a child entertainer in Portsmouth pubs, to his reluctant retirement from ‘these garish lights’ barely a year before his death. He wrote plays, he acted in them, he stage-managed them, all with fanatical perfectionism.

See Simon on BBC's I-Player The One Show talking about his book.

Simon has appeared in many films, including the hugely popular Four Weddings and a Funeral, Shakespeare in Love and Phantom of the Opera.  His books include Being an Actor, Shooting the Actor, a highly acclaimed biography of Charles Laughton, a biographical triilogy of Orson Welles (of which the first two parts have now been published) and his memoir My Life in Pieces.  On Dickens, Simon's acting credits include The Mystery of Charles Dickens, Dr Marigold and Mr Chops, A Christmas Carol and playing Dickens himself in the BBC's Dr Who.  Simon Callow was made Commander of the British Empire in 1999.

There will be a book singing session after the show

Suitable 14 years +

Duration 2 hours including interval

“When you find a writer that you love it's like finding a best friend. There's something in him which chimes with me: the energy; the scope; the generosity; the endless inventiveness of it.”  Simon Callow.

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