THEATRE PEOPLE IN NEW YEAR HONOURS LIST 2004


THEATRE PEOPLE IN NEW YEAR HONOURS LIST

Theatre people in the New Year Honours List include comedian & actor Eric Sykes (CBE); actress Anna Massey (CBE); playwright & director Ray Cooney (OBE); playwright Alan Plater (CBE); and former Artistic Director of the Theatre Royal Stratford East Philip Hedley (CBE)

Comedian & actor Eric Sykes (CBE), who is 81 years old is best-known for his TV comedy "Sykes", starring opposite Hattie Jacques, from 1960-79. He was made an OBE in 1986 and his latest honour comes after MPs tabled a Commons motion earlier this year for further recognition. His London stage work includes "Three Sisters" at the Playhouse in 2003; "Caught in the Net" at the Vaudeville in 2001; "Kafka's Dick" at the Piccadilly Theatre in 1998; "The School For Wives" at the Piccadilly & Comedy Theatres in 1997.




Actress Anna Massey (CBE) who is 67 years old, has said she was "absolutely thrilled" after she became a CBE for services to drama. Her London stage work includes "Mary Stuart" at the Lyttelton, NT in 1996; and "Cloudstreet" at the Olivier, NT in 2001. Her films have included 1960's "Peeping Tom", Alfred Hitchcock's "Frenzy" in 1972, comedy "The Tall Guy" in 1989 and "The Importance of Being Earnest" in 2002.




Playwright, Director, Producer & Actor Ray Cooney (OBE) who is 72 years old, formed the Theatre of Comedy Company in 1983 (bringing together the founder members consisting of Thirty West End stars) and he became its first Artistic Director. During Ray’s tenure the company produced over twenty plays. His playwright credits on the London stage in recent years include "Out of Order" at the New Wimbledon Theatre in 2004; "Caught in the Net" at the Vaudeville Theatre in 2001; "Funny Money" at the Playhouse Theatre in 1995.




Playwright Alan Plater (CBE) is 69 Years old. His playwright credits on the London stage in recent years include "Peggy For You" at the Comedy Theatre in 2000. His recent tv credits includes "The Last of the Blonde Bombshells" in 2000. His other TV series include "Dalziel and Pascoe", "A Very British Coup", "The Barchester Chronicles", "The Beiderbecke Affair", "Oliver's Travels" and "Fortunes of War".




Philip Hedley (CBE) is best-known for his 25 years as Artistic Director of the Theatre Royal Stratford East, from which post he resigned in September 2004. At Theatre Royal, he staged over 200 premieres of plays and musicals. He put on the only professional English-language production ever of Lorca's play "The Public", which championed homosexual love. Among his shows which transferred to the West End were "Steaming", "The Invisible Man", Ken Hill's "Phantom of the Opera" and "Five Guys Named Moe". Philip's name is closely identified with the championing of ethnic minority artists in theatre.

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