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Sir Antony Sher & Gregory Doran

Sir Antony Sher, KBE (born 14 June 1949) is a South African-born British actor, writer and theatre director. Sher and his partner – director Gregory Doran, with whom he frequently collaborates professionally – have been together since 1987 and became one of the first gay couples to enter into a civil partnership in the UK in 2005.

"We met when I joined the RSC. He was playing Shylock in The Merchant of Venice and I was given the role of [the gossip-monger] Solanio, duffing up Shylock; I'd spit at him and hit him. I was very impressed by this famous man who had recently got an Olivier [for his Richard III]. On stage he was volcanic, but off stage he was quiet, thoughtful and not terribly outgoing, and maybe that was attractive to me. We started walking out together in Stratford, and fell in love that summer." --Greg Doran

"We met on an RSC production of The Merchant of Venice, in 1987. I was playing Shylock and I noticed this handsome chap who was playing Solanio, so I asked the director who he was. I was in a long-term relationship at the time but it was an open relationship, and an affair began. It became much more than just physical, though – we fell in love." --Antony Sher

Sher was born into a Lithuanian-Jewish family in Cape Town, South Africa, the son of Emmanuel and Margery Sher, who worked in business. He grew up in the suburb of Sea Point and is a cousin of playwright Ronald Harwood. Sher, however, has worked mainly in the United Kingdom and is now a British citizen.

In 1968, after completing his compulsory military service, he left for London to audition at the Central School of Speech and Drama and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA), but was unsuccessful. He instead studied at the Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art from 1969 to 1971. After training, and some early performances with the theatre group Gay Sweatshop, he joined the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1982.


Gregory Doran and Sir Antony Sher, by Derry Moore, 12th Earl of Drogheda, bromide fibre print, 2004. 11 in. x 11 in. (279 mm x 279 mm). Given by John Morton Morris, 2005. Photographs Collection, NPG x126962
Sir Antony Sher is a British actor, writer and theatre director. Sher and his partner, director Gregory Doran, have been together since 1987 and became one of the first gay couples to enter into a civil partnership in the UK in 2005. "We met when I joined the RSC. [...] On stage he was volcanic, but off stage he was quiet, thoughtful and not terribly outgoing, and maybe that was attractive to me. We started walking out together in Stratford, and fell in love that summer." --Greg Doran


Doran and Sher on the Wedding Day with Sir Ian McKellen







In the 1970s, Sher was part of a group of young actors and writers working at the Liverpool Everyman Theatre. Comprising figures such as writers Alan Bleasdale and Willy Russell and fellow actors Trevor Eve, Bernard Hill, Jonathan Pryce and Julie Walters, Sher has summed up the work of the company with the phrase "anarchy ruled".

With the Royal Shakespeare Company, Sher took the title role in Tartuffe and played the Fool in King Lear. His big break arrived in 1984, when he performed the title role in Richard III and won the Laurence Olivier Award. Since then he has played the lead in such productions as Tamburlaine, Cyrano de Bergerac, Stanley and Macbeth. He has also played Johnnie in Athol Fugard's Hello and Goodbye, Iago in Othello, Malvolio in Twelfth Night and Shylock in The Merchant of Venice. Sher received his second Laurence Olivier Award in 1997 for his performance as the eponymous Stanley Spencer in Stanley.

He also has several film credits to his name, including Yanks (1979), Superman II (1980), Shadey (1985) and Erik the Viking (1989). Sher starred as the Chief Weasel in the 1996 film adaptation of The Wind in the Willows and as Benjamin Disraeli in the 1997 film Mrs Brown.

Sher's television appearances include the mini-series The History Man (1981) and The Jury (2002). In 2003, he played the central character in an adaptation of the J. G. Ballard short story, "The Enormous Space", filmed as Home and broadcast on BBC Four. In Hornblower (1999), he played the role of French royalist Colonel de Moncoutant, Marquis de Muzillac, in the episode "The Frogs and the Lobsters". More recent credits include a cameo in the British comedy film Three and Out (2008) and the role of Akiba in the television play God on Trial (2008).
Other work

Sher's books include the memoirs Woza Shakespeare: Titus Andronicus in South Africa (with Gregory Doran, 1997), Year of the King (1985), Beside Myself (2002), Characters (1990) and Primo Time (2005). His novels are Middlepost (1989), Cheap Lives (1995), The Indoor Boy (1996) and The Feast (1999).

Sher has also written several plays, including I.D. (2003) and Primo (2004). The latter was adapted as a film in 2005. In 2008, The Giant, the first of his plays in which Sher did not feature, was performed at the Hampstead Theatre. The main characters are Michelangelo (at the time of his creation of David), Leonardo da Vinci and Vito, their mutual apprentice.

In 2005, Sher directed Breakfast With Mugabe at the Swan Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon. The production moved to the Soho Theatre in April 2006 and the Duchess Theatre one month later. In 2007, he made a crime documentary for Channel 4, titled Murder Most Foul, about his native South Africa. It examines the double murder of actor Brett Goldin and fashion designer Richard Bloom. In 2011, Sher appeared in the BBC TV series The Shadow Line in the role of Glickman.

Gregory Doran (born 1958) is a British director. Known for his work in Shakespeare, he has been described by the Sunday Times as 'one of the great Shakespearians of his generation'.

He is currently Artistic Director of the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC), succeeding Michael Boyd in September 2012. In an interview, announcing his appointment, Doran said that whilst Boyd had concentrated on the 'Company', he would be concentrating on the 'Shakespeare' in the Royal Shakespeare Company logo.

His notable productions include a production of Macbeth starring Antony Sher, which was filmed for Channel 4 in 2001, as well as Hamlet in 2008, starring David Tennant and Patrick Stewart.

Doran was born in Huddersfield, but his family moved to Lancashire when he was six months old. He was educated at Preston Catholic College. He attended Bristol University studying English and Drama, where he set up his own theatre company with fellow student Chris Grady, presenting Shakespeare and related classics. He then trained as an actor at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School. He received an honorary doctorate from Bristol University in July 2011.

Doran left the Bristol Old Vic School early having been invited to direct A Midsummer Night's Dream at Jamestown Community College in upstate New York. He then went to Nottingham Playhouse as an actor, before becoming Assistant Director then Associate Director, directing his own productions including Waiting for Godot, and Long Day's Journey into Night.

After a very brief acting career in TV, he joined the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1987 initially as an actor (as Solanio in The Merchant of Venice and Octavius Caesar in Julius Caesar (play)) then became Assistant Director the following season.

He directed his first RSC production in 1992, commissioning Derek Walcott to write an adaptation of Homer's Odyssey which was performed at The Other Place.

In 1995 he directed his partner Antony Sher as Titus Andronicus at the Market Theatre, Johannesburg, South Africa. This controversial production, which toured to the National Theatre, is the subject of their book, Woza Shakespeare!

He returned to the RSC in 1996, becoming an Associate Director, and directing Jane Lapotaire, Ian Hogg and Paul Jesson in All is True (or Henry VIII), his first Shakespeare for the company.

Since then, Doran has directed over half the canon of Shakespeare's plays for the RSC.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antony_Sher

Further Readings:

Living with Shakespeare: Essays by Writers, Actors, and Directors (Vintage Original) by Susannah Carson and Harold Bloom
Paperback: 528 pages
Publisher: Vintage (April 9, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0307742911
ISBN-13: 978-0307742919
Amazon: Living with Shakespeare: Essays by Writers, Actors, and Directors
Amazon Kindle: Living with Shakespeare: Essays by Writers, Actors, and Directors

Why Shakespeare? What explains our continued fascination with his poems and plays? In Living with Shakespeare, Susannah Carson invites forty actors, directors, scholars, and writers to reflect on why his work is still such a vital part of our culture.

We hear from James Earl Jones on reclaiming Othello as a tragic hero, Julie Taymor on turning Prospero into Prospera, Camille Paglia on teaching the plays to actors, F. Murray Abraham on gaining an audience’s sympathy for Shylock, Sir Ben Kingsley on communicating Shakespeare’s ideas through performance, Germaine Greer on the playwright’s home life, Dame Harriet Walter on the complexity of his heroines, Brian Cox on social conflict in his time and ours, Jane Smiley on transposing King Lear to Iowa in A Thousand Acres, and Sir Antony Sher on feeling at home in Shakespeare’s language. Together these essays provide a fresh appreciation of Shakespeare’s works as a living legacy to be read, seen, performed, adapted, revised, wrestled with, and embraced by creative professionals and lay enthusiasts alike.

F. Murray Abraham ● Isabel Allende ● Cicely Berry ● Eve Best ● Eleanor Brown ● Stanley Cavell ● Karin Coonrod ● Brian Cox ● Peter David ● Margaret Drabble ● Dominic Dromgoole ● David Farr ● Fiasco Theater ● Ralph Fiennes ● Angus Fletcher ● James Franco ● Alan Gordon ● Germaine Greer ● Barry John ● James Earl Jones ● Sir Ben Kingsley ● Maxine Hong Kingston ● Rory Kinnear ● J. D. McClatchy ● Conor McCreery ● Tobias Menzies ● Joyce Carol Oates ● Camille Paglia ● James Prosek ● Richard Scholar ● Sir Antony Sher ● Jane Smiley ● Matt Sturges ● Julie Taymor ● Eamonn Walker ● Dame Harriet Walter ● Bill Willingham ● Jess Winfield

More Real Life Romances at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Real Life Romance


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