|Dame Dorothy Tutin
1982 promotional image
8 April 1930|
|Died||6 August 2001
Midhurst, West Sussex, England
|Spouse(s)||Derek Waring (1964–2001; her death)|
Dame Dorothy Tutin, DBE (8 April 1930 – 6 August 2001) was an English actress of stage, film and television. For her work in the theatre, she won two Olivier Awards and two Evening Standard Awards for Best Actress. She was made a CBE in 1967 and a Dame (DBE) in 2000.
Tutin began her stage career in 1949 and won the 1960 Best Actress Evening Standard Award for Twelfth Night. Having made her Broadway debut in the 1963 production of The Hollow Crown, she received a Tony Award nomination for her role in the 1968 original Broadway production of Portrait of a Queen. In the 1970s, she won a second Best Actress Evening Standard Award and twice won the Olivier Award (then the Society of London awards) for Best Actress in a Revival, for A Month in the Country and The Double Dealer. Her films included The Importance of Being Earnest (1952), The Beggar's Opera (1953), A Tale of Two Cities (1958), Savage Messiah (1972) and The Shooting Party (1985).
An obituary in The Daily Telegraph described her as "one of the most enchanting, accomplished and intelligent leading ladies on the post-war British stage. With her husky voice, deep brown eyes, wistful smile and sense of humour, she brought an enduring charm to all kinds of stage drama, ancient and modern, as well as to films and television plays in a career that spanned more than 40 years".
Dorothy Tutin was born in London on 8 April 1930, the daughter of John Tutin and his wife Adie Evelyn (Fryers), a couple who married the following year. Her year of birth was sometimes given as 1931, said to disguise the circumstances of her birth, but certainly not by herself.
She was educated at St Catherine's School, Bramley, Surrey and studied for the stage at PARADA and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. Tutin was also a talented pianist, but chose acting rather than music as her vocation.
She married the actor Derek Waring, and they had two children, Nicholas and Amanda, both of whom also became actors. Dorothy Tutin and Derek Waring remained married until her death in 2001 at the age of 71 from leukaemia. Waring died in 2007.
Tutin was created a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 1967, and raised to Dame Commander (DBE) in 2000.
She joined the Bristol Old Vic Company in January 1950, appearing as Phebe in As You Like It, Anni in Denis Cannan's Captain Carvallo and Belinda in John Vanbrugh's The Provok'd Wife. She joined the Old Vic company in London for the 1950–51 season, playing among other parts, Win-the-Fight Littlewit in Ben Jonson's Bartholomew Fair, Ann Page in The Merry Wives of Windsor and Princess Katharine in Henry V.
At the Lyric Theatre, Hammersmith in September 1951 she played Martina in Christopher Fry's Thor With Angels, followed in January 1952 by Hero in John Gielgud's triumphant production of Much Ado About Nothing at the Phoenix Theatre.
Subsequent roles included:
- Rose Pemberton in The Living Room (Graham Greene), Wyndham's Theatre, April 1953
- Sally Bowles in I Am a Camera (John Van Druten), New Theatre, March 1954
- Joan in The Lark (Jean Anouilh), Lyric Hammersmith, March 1955
- Hedvig in The Wild Duck, Saville Theatre, December 1955
- Caroline Traherne in The Gates of Summer, touring, September 1956
- Jean Rice in The Entertainer, Royal Court, April 1957
Work with the RSC
Tutin first joined the Shakespeare Memorial Theatre Company for the 1960 season in Stratford-upon-Avon, appearing as Juliet in Romeo and Juliet, Viola in Twelfth Night and Cressida in Troilus and Cressida. Then with the same company (but renamed the Royal Shakespeare Company from January 1961) she appeared as:
- Viola in Twelfth Night, Aldwych Theatre, December 1960 (Evening Standard Awards Best Actress)
- Sister Jeanne in The Devils, Aldwych, February 1961.
- Juliet in Romeo and Juliet, Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford, August 1961
- Desdemona in Othello, Stratford October 1961, Aldwych, October 1962
- Varya in The Cherry Orchard, Aldwych, December 1961 and October 1962
- The Hollow Crown, Henry Miller's Theatre (New York debut), January 1963
- Polly Peachum in The Beggar's Opera, Aldwych, July 1963
Other work included:
- Beatrice in Beatrice et Benedict (concert version) Royal Festival Hall, November 1963
- Queen Victoria in Portrait of a Queen, Bristol Old Vic March 1965; Vaudeville Theatre, May 1965; and Henry Miller NY, February 1968 (Tony nominee)
- Rosalind in As You Like It, RSC Stratford and Aldwych, summer 1967, then at the Ahmanson Theatre, Los Angeles, January 1968
- Ann in Ann Veronica, Belgrade Theatre, Coventry, February 1969
- Francine in Play on Love, St Martin's Theatre, January 1970
- Alice in Arden of Faversham, RSC Theatregoround Festival, Roundhouse, November 1970
- Kate in Old Times, Aldwych, June 1971
- Title role in Peter Pan, London Coliseum, December 1971 and 1972
- Maggie Wylie in What Every Woman Knows, touring, March 1972 and Albery Theatre, November 1974
- Natalya Petrovna in A Month in the Country, Chichester Festival Theatre, 1974 season; and (for Prospect Productions) Albery Theatre, November 1975 (Evening Standard Awards Best Actress) & (Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Revival)
- Lady Macbeth in Macbeth, Yvonne Arnaud Theatre, October 1976
- Cleopatra in Antony and Cleopatra, Edinburgh Festival 1977 and Old Vic November 1977
- Madame Ranevsky in The Cherry Orchard, National Theatre, Olivier, February 1978
- Lady Macbeth in Macbeth, National, Olivier, June 1978
- Lady Plyant in The Double Dealer, National, Olivier, September 1978 (Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Revival)
- Genia Hofreiter in Undiscovered Country, National, Olivier, June 1979
- Mme Dubarry in Reflections, Theatre Royal Haymarket, March 1980
- Hester Collyer in The Deep Blue Sea, Greenwich Theatre September 1981
- Deborah in A Kind of Alaska (part of a Pinter Other Places triple-bill), Duchess Theatre, March 1985
- Blanche Jerome in Brighton Beach Memoirs, Aldwych Theatre, December 1986
- Sonia in Loleh Sellon's Thursday's Ladies, Apollo Theatre, September 1987
- Edna Selby in Harlequinade and Millie Crocker-Harris in The Browning Version, Royalty Theatre, March 1988
- Desiree Armfeldt in A Little Night Music, Minerva Theatre, Chichester, August 1989; Piccadilly Theatre, October 1989
- Elderly Woman in Mountain Language and Melissa in Party Time (Harold Pinter), Almeida Theatre, November 1991
- Rhoda Monkhams in Rodney Ackland's After October, Minerva, Chichester, May 1997, Richmond Theatre and Greenwich Theatre, June 1997, co-starring with Nicholas Waring
- Fonsia Dorsey in The Gin Game, Savoy Theatre, March 1999, co-starring with Joss Ackland
Films and television
Dorothy Tutin's unusual looks, as well as her acting ability, led to early success. She won the role of Cecily in Anthony Asquith's 1952 film version of Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest (BAFTA nomination for Most Promising Newcomer). In the same year she played Polly Peachum to Laurence Olivier's Macheath in Peter Brook's film version of The Beggar's Opera (1953).
She continued to divide her appearances between stage, TV and film, appearing in the title role of a television production of Jean Anouilh's Antigone in 1969 and in the 1970 film Cromwell as Queen Henrietta Maria, before playing another Queen in 1970 – Anne Boleyn in the BBC's series The Six Wives of Henry VIII, which starred Keith Michell in the title role. She also played Margot Asquith, the wife of Prime Minister Herbert Asquith, in the dramatic series Number 10. (The Asquiths' son Anthony directed Dorothy Tutin in her film debut.) She appeared in the Ken Russell film Savage Messiah in 1972.
She also performed as the teacher Sarah Burton in the TV series South Riding (1974), based on the novel South Riding by Winifred Holtby. She starred as Mrs. Alving in Yorkshire Television production of Ibsen's Ghosts (1977) with Richard Pasco, Ronald Fraser, Brian Deacon, and Julia Foster. In the early 1980s Tutin also appeared in the made-for-television film Murder with Mirrors (based on an Agatha Christie novel) along with Helen Hayes and Bette Davis. Another of her notable roles was as Goneril in an Emmy-winning television production of Shakespeare's King Lear, opposite Laurence Olivier as King Lear and Robert Lang as the Duke of Albany. She guest starred in an episode of the 1980s TV-series Robin of Sherwood, as Lady Margaret of Gisbourne.
Awards and nominations
|1953||BAFTA Film Award||Most Promising Newcomer to Film||The Importance of Being Earnest||Nominated|||
|1960||Evening Standard Award||Best Actress||Twelfth Night||Won|
|1960||Tony Award||Best Actress in a Play||Portrait of a Queen||Nominated|
|1971||BAFTA TV Award||Best Actress||The Six Wives of Henry VIII / Somerset Maugham Series (Flotsam and Jetsam)||Nominated|
|1973||BAFTA TV Award||Best Actress||Savage Messiah||Nominated|
|1975||Evening Standard Award||Best Actress||A Month in the Country||Won|
|1976||Olivier Award||Best Actress in a Revival||A Month in the Country||Won|||
|1977||BAFTA TV Award||Best Actress||South Riding||Nominated|
|1978||Olivier Award||Best Actress in a Revival||The Double Dealer||Won|||
- The Importance of Being Earnest (1952)
- The Beggar's Opera (1953)
- A Tale of Two Cities (1958)
- Cromwell (1970)
- Savage Messiah (1972)
- The Spy's Wife (1972)
- The Shooting Party (1985)
- Murder with Mirrors (1985)
- Indian Summer (1996)
- Daily Telegraph obituary – see External link
- Preparatory Academy to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, as listed by Tutin in her first biographical entry for Who's Who in the Theatre in 1957
- "Explore the Awards | BAFTA Awards". bafta.org. Retrieved 2014-04-17.
- "Previous Winners: Olivier Winners 1976 - Olivier Awards". olivierawards.com. Retrieved 2014-04-17.
- "Previous Winners: Olivier Winners 1978 - Olivier Awards". olivierawards.com. Retrieved 2014-04-17.
- Who's Who in the Theatre 17th edition, Gale (1981). ISBN 0-8103-0235-7.
- Theatre Record and its annual Indexes.