Kenneth Cranham

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Kenneth Cranham
Fratello sole, sorella luna (1972) Kenneth Cranham.png
Cranham in Brother Sun, Sister Moon (1972)
Born (1944-12-12) 12 December 1944 (age 77)
Dunfermline, Fife, Scotland
Years active1963–present
Spouse(s)Diana Quick
(m. 1974; div. 1978)
Fiona Victory
PartnerCharlotte Cornwell

Kenneth Cranham (born 12 December 1944) is a Scottish film, television, radio and stage actor.

Early life[edit]

Cranham was born in Dunfermline, Fife, the son of Lochgelly-born Margaret McKay Cranham (née Ferguson) and Ronald Cranham, a London-born civil servant.[1][2]


Cranham trained at the National Youth Theatre of Great Britain,[3] and at RADA. He starred in the title role in the popular 1980s comedy drama Shine on Harvey Moon, prior to which he had appeared as Charlie Collins in A Family at War (1971).[4] He also appeared in Layer Cake, Gangster No. 1, Rome, Oliver! and many other films. Cranham was cast as the deranged Philip Channard and his Cenobitic alter-ego in the Horror film Hellbound: Hellraiser II. Among many stage credits are West End productions of Entertaining Mr Sloane, Loot, An Inspector Calls (both transferring to Broadway), The Ruffian on the Stair, The Birthday Party and Gaslight (at the Old Vic). For his role as Inspector Goole in An Inspector Calls, he was nominated for a Laurence Olivier Award.

In 2016, Cranham won the Olivier Award for Best Actor in a Play for his role as Andre in Florian Zeller's The Father. The play originated at the Theatre Royal Bath's Ustinov Studio in the autumn of 2014, before touring the country and transferring to the West End in the summer of 2015, returning to the Duke of York's Theatre in spring 2016. The play received an unprecedented five star review from every leading national press publication.[citation needed] Cranham's performance was described as "the performance of his life".[5]

For BBC Radio 4's Afternoon Play, Cranham has played DS Max Matthews in The Interrogation by Roy Williams (2012–present) and starred as Thomas Gradgrind in BBC Radio's 2007 adaptation of Dickens' Hard Times.

Personal life[edit]

His first wife was actress Diana Quick. He has two daughters: Nancy Cranham from a relationship with actress Charlotte Cornwell, and Kathleen Cranham with his second wife, to whom he is still married, actress Fiona Victory.[1]





He has also performed a number of readings for BBC Radio.

Awards and nominations[edit]


Year Award Category Work Result
2015 Critics’ Circle Theatre Award[7] Best Actor The Father Won
2016 Laurence Olivier Award[8] Best Actor Won


  1. ^ a b "Kenneth Cranham Biography (1944-)". 2016. Retrieved 24 February 2016.
  2. ^ "He epitomises the cockney geezer and hard man on screen, but actor Kenneth Cranham's roots – and fondest memories – belong to Fife". The Scotsman. 30 November 2008. Retrieved 24 February 2016.
  3. ^ "20 Questions With ... Kenneth Cranham". February 2008. Archived from the original on 13 December 2013.
  4. ^ ""A Family at War" Lend Your Loving Arms (TV Episode 1971)". IMDb.
  5. ^ The Father (Tricycle Theatre), 13 May 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2018
  6. ^ "2015 Results | Critics' Circle Theatre Awards". 28 November 2016. Retrieved 6 December 2020.
  7. ^ "Olivier Winners 2016". Olivier Awards. Retrieved 6 December 2020.

External links[edit]