Alex Giannini

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Alex Giannini (born Alexander von Giannini; 6 June 1958 – 2 October 2015)[1] was an English actor on stage, television and film. His work included comedy and musicals as well as drama.


Giannini was born in Northamptonshire in 1958; his father was born in Rome, his mother was English. He was educated in England, Italy and in Luxembourg, where his father worked for the European Commission.[1][2]

He was the lead singer, as Sandy Fontaine, of the band Coast to Coast, which appeared on Top of the Pops; the group disbanded in 1982. He was inspired to become an actor on reading Steven Berkoff's play East, and later graduated from East 15 Acting School.[1][2]

Acting career[edit]

Giannini appeared in the musical Guys and Dolls, as Harry the Horse, at the National Theatre. In 1999 he was in the original Broadway production of Not about Nightingales, a long-lost play by Tennessee Williams; the play ran for five months. In 2003 he was Dean Martin in Rat Pack Confidential, at the Whitehall Theatre. Further stage appearances in London included One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest at the Garrick Theatre in 2004; Journey's End at the Ambassadors Theatre in 2005; as Big Mac in Steven Berkoff's revival of On the Waterfront at the Haymarket Theatre in 2009. In 2011 was in Batman Live, as The Penguin and Commissioner Gordon: the show toured the UK, Europe, and North and South America.[1][2]

Film appearances included In Love and War (1996); Elizabeth: The Golden Age (2007), Legend (2015) as Antonio Caponigro, and London Has Fallen (2016). On TV he was seen in Inspector Morse, Dalziel and Pascoe, The Musketeers, The Bill and others. In Italy he appeared in a series of TV commercials for olive oil, which ran for five years.[1][2]

Alex Giannini died of natural causes, an hour before he was due on stage at the Theatre Royal, Plymouth, in Chichester Festival Theatre's production of Mack and Mabel; he was 57.[1]


An early marriage was dissolved, and in 1998 he married Jennifer Secombe, daughter of Harry Secombe; there were three stepchildren.[2]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Alex Giannini, actor - obituary The Daily Telegraph, 19 October 2015. Accessed 5 September 2017.
  2. ^ a b c d e Alex Giannini The Stage, 21 October 2015. Accessed 5 September 2017.

External links[edit]