Comscore
Advertisement

Is Angela Lansbury not good enough for West End?

Will42 Profile PhotoWill42 Profile Photo
Will42
Broadway Star
joined:5/27/10
Broadway Star
joined:
5/27/10
It was just announced that Mark Rylance will direct James Earl Jones and Vanessa Redgrave in Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing, which would be a perfect role for Lansbury (no offence to Ms. Redgrave).
Australia of all places will get 5 months of her greatness in Driving Miss Daisy, so why can't they finally offer her something worthy here?
She has played Gertrude in Old Vic production of Hamlet back in 1975, that was almost 40 years ago and she's not getting any younger.
It's not like Ms. Lansbury doesn't want to come back. She has said many times that she would love to perform on the West End stage. Particularly, at the Theatre Royal Haymarket, because that is where her mother Moyna Macgill played.
She is still waiting for someone to make the offer and they better do it soon.
theeatah Profile Phototheeatah Profile Photo
theeatah
Leading Actor
joined:1/31/10
Leading Actor
joined:
1/31/10
It's punishment for not originating MAME there.
Scripps2 Profile PhotoScripps2 Profile Photo
Scripps2
Broadway Legend
joined:1/19/08
Broadway Legend
joined:
1/19/08
"It's not like Ms. Lansbury doesn't want to come back. She has said many times that she would love to perform on the West End stage."

Well she's hardly likely to say "My family left the UK because they were pissed off with the whole situation there, and I think they made the right decision" is she?

But I think if she really wanted to do a lengthy run on the West End stage it would have happened by now.
Princeton Returns Profile PhotoPrinceton Returns Profile Photo
Princeton Returns
Broadway Legend
joined:12/2/10
Broadway Legend
joined:
12/2/10
didnt they try to get her for mrs higgins in the recent pygmalian revival?
qolbinau Profile Photoqolbinau Profile Photo
qolbinau
Broadway Legend
joined:6/29/08
Broadway Legend
joined:
6/29/08
At 87 Lansbury must be one of the oldest stage actors ever. It must be a risky investment to mount a stage show around her (can you insure something like this in case she fell ill?).

I am surprised she is coming to Australia. Maybe John Frost (the producer) is more willing to take a risk than those in the West End.
winston89 Profile Photowinston89 Profile Photo
winston89
Broadway Legend
joined:6/18/06
Broadway Legend
joined:
6/18/06
They mounted a production around her a couple of years back with Night Music. Granted, her health wasn't the concern that the producers had. Their concern was that she would remember her lines. However, she wore an earwig to be able to have her lines fed to her.
"If you try to shag my husband while I am still alive, I will shove the art of motorcycle maintenance up your rancid little Cu**. That's a good dear" Tom Stoppard's Rock N Roll
Will42 Profile PhotoWill42 Profile Photo
Will42
Broadway Star
joined:5/27/10
Broadway Star
joined:
5/27/10
Yeah, there were some talks about her starring in the revival, but for some reason it never came to frustration. They still found a star at the end in Dame Diana Rigg.
Will42 Profile PhotoWill42 Profile Photo
Will42
Broadway Star
joined:5/27/10
Broadway Star
joined:
5/27/10
While 87 is a very impressive age, she far from being even one the oldest. Cathleen Nesbitt, for example was playing Mrs. Higgins in My Fair Lady revival when she was over 90 years old, Russian actor Vladimir Zeldin was playing the lead role in a stage musical while being in his late 90's and Dutch actor Johannes Heesters kept performing on stage till he turned 104. Estelle Parsons (85), Rosemary Harris (85), Barbara Cook (85) and Elaine Stritch (87) are all still very much in business.
Ms. Lansbury said that she doesn't feel her age at all and feels like she's in her 50's. She's in great shape and as far as I know almost never missed a performance and hopefully will continue to entertain us for many years to come.
Will42 Profile PhotoWill42 Profile Photo
Will42
Broadway Star
joined:5/27/10
Broadway Star
joined:
5/27/10
She asked for an earpiece during the Blithe Spirit run in 2009, but she was not wearing any for a Little Night Music (2010) or The Best Man (2012).
qolbinau Profile Photoqolbinau Profile Photo
qolbinau
Broadway Legend
joined:6/29/08
Broadway Legend
joined:
6/29/08
You listed three actors that were older than her, lol. I think that qualifies as one of the oldest.

Will42 Profile PhotoWill42 Profile Photo
Will42
Broadway Star
joined:5/27/10
Broadway Star
joined:
5/27/10
Well, today came yet another proof that Brits don't appreciate/care for Ms. Lansbury. She is 87 years old and still not made a Dame. What are they waiting for?
Julie Andrews, Judi Dench, Maggie Smith, Elisabeth Taylor, Vanessa Redgrave (she declined though), Helen Mirren, Eileen Atkins, Joan Plowright, Harriet Walter any many other actresses are all younger than Lansbury and yet they all have been offered with DBE ages ago.
Princeton Returns Profile PhotoPrinceton Returns Profile Photo
Princeton Returns
Broadway Legend
joined:12/2/10
Broadway Legend
joined:
12/2/10
whilst i agree she should be made a dame i do wonder if she has turned it down before as she does tend to play down her british routes. you can always nominate her
Will42 Profile PhotoWill42 Profile Photo
Will42
Broadway Star
joined:5/27/10
Broadway Star
joined:
5/27/10
I doubt she would turn it down. After all she happily accepted her CBE 20 years ago. Plus, when somebody turns it down it instantly goes public (Vanessa Redgrave, Helen Mirren (CBE), David Bowie, Jim Broadbent, Albert Finney (twice), etc.)

Not sure what you mean by playing down her British routes. Ms. Lansbury seems to be very proud of her origins. Nearly every time she speaks with a UK journalist she mentions her mother and her grandfather George Lansbury who was the leader of the Labour Party in the 30's.
songanddanceman2 Profile Photosonganddanceman2 Profile Photo
songanddanceman2
Broadway Legend
joined:8/31/06
Broadway Legend
joined:
8/31/06
I refuse to embrace her if she comes to the West End until she brings back Murder She Wrote....yeah you heard it....i LOVE Murder She Wrote
Namo i love u but we get it already....you don't like Madonna
Will42 Profile PhotoWill42 Profile Photo
Will42
Broadway Star
joined:5/27/10
Broadway Star
joined:
5/27/10
Ms. Lansbury actually said that she wouldn't mind to make more Murder, She Wrote movies, but I doubt CBS is interested in bringing it back after so many years. The last one came out 10 years ago.
songanddanceman2 Profile Photosonganddanceman2 Profile Photo
songanddanceman2
Broadway Legend
joined:8/31/06
Broadway Legend
joined:
8/31/06
Damn you CBS.....DAMN YOU!!!!
Namo i love u but we get it already....you don't like Madonna
bdn223 Profile Photobdn223 Profile Photo
bdn223
Broadway Star
joined:6/14/08
Broadway Star
joined:
6/14/08
Ms.Lansbury has since renounced her British citizenship in favor of American citizenship which is likly why she hasn't been named a Dame.
Will42 Profile PhotoWill42 Profile Photo
Will42
Broadway Star
joined:5/27/10
Broadway Star
joined:
5/27/10
I can't find an official conformation of her ether renouncing or keeping her British citizenship after she became a naturalized US citizen in 1951, but I always thought had a dual citizenship.
But even if she doesn't have one, Ms. Lansbury is still eligible to receive the title and become an honorary Dame.
Princeton Returns Profile PhotoPrinceton Returns Profile Photo
Princeton Returns
Broadway Legend
joined:12/2/10
Broadway Legend
joined:
12/2/10
Thanks bdn i thought that was the case but couldn't be sure of the details.

If she has renounced her citizenship to be honest why should she be made a dame. She has had little to do with the UK for a very long time
ClapYo'Hands Profile PhotoClapYo'Hands Profile Photo
ClapYo'Hands
Broadway Legend
joined:11/29/09
Broadway Legend
joined:
11/29/09
Neither has Sir Roger Moore.
2014 Theatre: Strangers on a Train 3.5 * From Here To Eternity 3.5* Stephen Ward ***** The Full Monty ***** Fiddler on the Roof (UK Tour) *** Stephen Ward ***** Jersey Boys ***** Blithe Spirit ***** Wicked (UK Tour) *** Arcadia ** Dirty Rotten Scoundrels *** Urinetown ***** Charlie and the Chocolate Factory 3.5* Other Desert Cities **** Birdland **** The Phantom of the Opera **** Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake ***** In The Heights ***** Miss Saigon **** Clarence Darrow ***** Great Britain **** The Crucible **** The Pajama Game **** Mamma Mia *** Anna Nicole **** Barnum (UK Tour) ***** Simon Callow: The Man Jesus *****
Princeton Returns Profile PhotoPrinceton Returns Profile Photo
Princeton Returns
Broadway Legend
joined:12/2/10
Broadway Legend
joined:
12/2/10
Has he renounced his citizenship too?
hermajesty Profile Photohermajesty Profile Photo
hermajesty
Leading Actor
joined:9/28/11
Leading Actor
joined:
9/28/11
She's probably always booked up and not been available at the time for UK productions
All problems are man made and so, can be man solved.
Briaansmith
Chorus Member
joined:12/13/12
Chorus Member
joined:
12/13/12
Will42 I live in Australia and its a great country thank you very much
Will42 Profile PhotoWill42 Profile Photo
Will42
Broadway Star
joined:5/27/10
Broadway Star
joined:
5/27/10
I'm sure it's a beautiful country.
I just meant that it's very far away from home. Driving Miss Daisy producers wanted Ms. Lansbury and she agreed to travel that far and tour in different climate away from home for the half-year. This is huge for the person her age. But she came along because it's a great part and one in a lifetime opportunity.

I'm sure she would've gladly agreed to perform on a land she was born had anyone actually offered her a role worthy of her talent and showed real interest in bringing her here.

Here's the cast of Driving Miss Daisy during press event in Sydney: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3wPB7tNFN1k

Save $$$ on Tickets to:
🔀BALTIMORE SHOWS
Ghosts
(Runs 4/1 - 5/3)
Romeo and Juliet
(Runs 4/10 - 5/10)
After the Revolution
(Runs 3/18 - 5/17)
Avenue Q
(Runs 5/7 - 5/17)
4000 Miles in Baltimore4000 Miles
(Runs 4/1 - 5/24)
Dirty Dancing in BaltimoreDirty Dancing
(Runs 5/12 - 5/24)
Marley
(Runs 5/6 - 6/14)

VIEW ALL | ADD A SHOW | AUDITIONS