Nathaniel Parker

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This article is about the English actor sometimes known as Nat Parker. For the American actor, see Nate Parker.
Nathaniel Parker
Nathaniel Parker at the WhatsOnStage Awards 2015.jpg
Parker at the 2015 Awards
Born (1962-05-18) 18 May 1962 (age 53)
London, England
Occupation Actor
Years active 1988–present
Spouse(s) Anna Patrick (m. 1992)

Nathaniel Parker (born 18 May 1962) is an English actor best known for playing Detective Inspector Thomas "Tommy" Lynley in the BBC crime drama series The Inspector Lynley Mysteries.

Early life[edit]

Parker was born in London, the son of the businessman (and one-time British Rail chairman) Sir Peter Parker and Gillian, Lady Parker, a GP and expert gardener who wrote "The Purest of Pleasures:Creation of a Romantic Garden".[1] Parker's brother is the film director Oliver Parker. He also has another brother, Alan Parker, who is chairman of Brunswick Group Ltd. Nathaniel Parker is married to Anna Patrick. The couple live in Gloucestershire with their daughters Raphaella (born 1998) and Angelica (born 1996).


Parker was educated at Fox Primary School, a state school in Kensington in West London, and at two independent schools: Moulsford Prep School in the village of Moulsford, near Wallingford in Oxfordshire, and Leighton Park School, a boarding school in the town of Reading in Berkshire.[2] He joined the National Youth Theatre, and after training at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art,[3] became a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Life and career[edit]

Parker portrayed Bassanio in Peter Hall's 1989 production of The Merchant of Venice in both London and on Broadway, co-starring with Dustin Hoffman. In 1997, Nathaniel portrayed David in a made-for-TV film of the life of the biblical character King David. In 2000, he played Bob in Rupert Goold's West End revival of David Mamet's Speed-the-Plow. "With his unforced, tough demeanour and conviction Parker substantially carries the evening," wrote John Thaxter in The Stage (July 6, 2000).

In a 2007 Radio Times interview, Parker said that his first big television break came in 1988 when he played a Battle of France pilot in ITV's glossy six-part drama Piece of Cake. Another early role was Wilfred Owen in Derek Jarman's War Requiem, a 1989 film adaptation of Benjamin Britten's War Requiem. It co-starred Laurence Olivier, in his last screen role, as an old soldier. Four years later, Parker played Edward Rochester in John Duigan's 1993 film adaptation of Jean Rhys' Wide Sargasso Sea.

Parker established his reputation by playing a variety of television costume drama roles, such as Martin Jordan in the 1995 TV production of Joanna Trollope's A Village Affair, Gabriel Oak in the ITV production of Far From the Madding Crowd (1997), Martin Tanley in the comedy film Beverly Hills Ninja (1997), Rawdon Crawley in a BBC version of Vanity Fair (1998) and, notably, Harold Skimpole in the BBC1 dramatisation of Bleak House (2005). He starred in the BBC series Merlin as Lord Agravaine, Arthur's uncle.

From 2001 to 2007, Parker played Detective Inspector Thomas Lynley in the long-running BBC1 thriller series The Inspector Lynley Mysteries. It co-starred Sharon Small as his assistant, Detective Sergeant Barbara Havers. During that time he also played Edward Gracey in Disney's film adaptation of The Haunted Mansion (2003), Albert Speer in the BBC production of 2006 Nuremberg: Nazis on Trial and Dunstan Thorne in the fantasy film Stardust (2007). Parker also starred briefly in St Trinian's (directed by his brother, Oliver).

Parker is a voiceover artist and has done work in audiobooks, including Eoin Colfer's children's Artemis Fowl series, the first three books in Charlie Higson's Young James Bond series, and The Gardens of The Dead by William Brodrick. He read Mark Haddon's novel A Spot of Bother for BBC Radio Four's Book at Bedtime and played Axel in Jules Verne's Journey to the Centre of the Earth, first broadcast on BBC Radio Four Extra on 20 November 2011 and again on 12 November 2012.[4]

In 2011, Parker joined the cast of Merlin,[5] to play the character of Agravaine for all 13 episodes to the fourth series. He also appeared in the independent comedy-drama The Perfect Host, alongside David Hyde Pierce.

In 2012, Parker was cast alongside YouTube reviewer Stuart Ashen in the Alienware sponsored sci-fi thriller series The Proxy. He also appeared as Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the Sûreté du Québec in the film adaption of Louise Penny's murder mystery novel Still Life, set in rural Quebec.[6] He also starred in the TV series, Me and Mrs Jones.

Parker played King Henry VIII in Wolf Hall (and Bring up the Bodies) for the Royal Shakespeare Company in 2013, earning a 2015 Olivier Award for best actor in a supporting role for the London production and appearing in New York City when the show moved on to Broadway,[7] where his performance received a Tony Award nomination.[8]

In July 2015, Parker played the domestic bully Dicky Carmichael in the BBC’s two-part television adaptation of Sadie Jones’ debut novel The Outcast.[9]



Year Title Role Notes
1988 Piece of Cake Flying Officer 'Flash' Gordon
1989 Inspector Morse: Deceived By Flight Jamie Jasper
1989 Never Come Back[11] Desmond Thane
1989 War Requiem Wilfred Owen
1990 Harry Enfield's Television Programme "Fire Man" Episodes 1-4
1990 Heroes II: The Return Ivan Lyon
1990 Hamlet Laertes
1991 Absolute Hell[12] Sam Mitchum
1991 Agatha Christies's Poirot: The Affair at the Victory Ball Chris Davidson
1991 The War that Never Ends Alcibiades
1991 The Black Candle[13] Lionel Filmore
1992 Look at It This Way[14] Miles
1992 The Bodyguard Clive Healy
1993 The Vision Thing[15] Michael Fisher
1993 Rik Mayall Presents: Dancing Queen Nigel
1993 Wide Sargasso Sea Edward Rochester
1994 Unsigned (the shooting Gallery)[16] The Devil
1994 Without walls for one night only - Errol Flynn[17] Errol Flynn
1994 A Village Affair Marin Jordan
1994 Squanto: A Warrior's Tale Thomas Dermer
1994 Dangerous Games [Gefährliche Spiele][18] Thomas Cranmer
1995 A Touch of Frost: Quarry Stephen Milmore
1995 Othello Cassio
1995 A Little Loving[19] Greek God Pan
1996 The Short Cut[20] Ross Short film
1997 Beverly Hills Ninja Martin Tanley
1997 Into Thin Air: Death On The Everest Rob Hall
1997 The Bible: David[21] David
1998 Far from the Madding Crowd Gabriel Oak
1998 Vanity Fair Rawdon Crawley
1999 Trust[22] Andrew Pearce
1999 McCallum: Beyond Good and Evil Dan Gallagher Series 3
2000 Lover's Prayer (aka All Forgotten)[23] Valdimir's Father
2000 Pretending to be Judith[24] James Lovel
2001-2007 The Inspector Lynley Mysteries Inspector Thomas Lynley
2003 The Haunted Mansion Master Gracy
2003 The Private Life of Samuel Pepys Charles II
2004 Happy Birthday Oscar Wilde Himself
2005 Bedtime Stories Narrator
2005 Bleak House Harrold Skimpole
2005 Fade to Black Guido Viola
2006 Flawless Oliver Ashtoncroft
2006 Stardust Dunstan Thorn
2006 Nuremberg: Nazis on Trial Albert Speer
2006 A Class Apart[25] Anthony Troth
2007 I really hate my job Guy II Cameo role
2007 St. Trinian's Chairman of the National Gallery Cameo role
2007 The Witcher Berengar Video game
Voice over
2008 Hotel Babylon: Is Love Really in the Air? Alexander Crawfield Series 3 episode 2
2009 Malice In Wonderland Harry Hunt
2009 The Perfect Host Detective Morton
2009 The Courageous Heart of Irena Sendler Dr Juliusz Majkowski
2009 Land Girls Lord Lawrence Hoxley series 1
2009 Lewis: The dead of winter Lieutenant Philip Coleman Series 4
2009 My Family Uncle Richard BBC; Christmas episode 2009
2010 The Domino Effect Tramp
2010 Sergeant Slaughter[26] Father
2010 Tell Me Dr. Anton Sharple
2010 The Chronicles of Narnia (Dawn Treader) Caspian IX Cameo role
2010 Injustice Marin Newall
2011 Merlin Agravaine Series 4
2012 The Proxy Peter Baker
2012 The Charles Dickens Show[27] Doctor Guffquatt
2012 Me and Mrs Jones Tom Marshall
2012 Still Life: An Inspector Gamache Mystery[6] Chief Inspector Armand Gamache
2014 Moomins on the Riviera Moominpappa voice role
2015 The Proxy: Enhanced Full Cut Peter baker Actor

Theatre work[edit]


Year Title Role Company Theatre Notes
1981 Richard III National Youth Theatre
1982 Macbeth Macbeth National Youth Theatre
1984 Trumpets and Drums (based on the The Recruiting Officer) Captain Brazen London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art
1985 Claw Ludsby Theatre Clwyd / Mold Theatre Clwyd / Mold
1985 Trumpets and Drums (based on the The Recruiting Officer) Captain Brazen Theatre Clwyd / Mold Theatre Clwyd / Mold
1986 Romeo and Juliet Tybolt Young Vic, London Old Vic 11.02.86
1986 The Gift RSC Swan Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon [29]
1986 The Kiss Oliver RSC [28]
1986-1987 The Winter's Tale Florizel RSC Royal Shakespeare Theatre Stratford-upon-Avon, Tyne Theatre Newcastle upon Tyne, Barbican Theatre London [29]
1986-1987 Every Man in His Humour Wellbred RSC Swan Theatre Stratford-upon-Avon, Mermaid Theatre London, The Peoples Theatre Newcastle upon Tyne [29]
1986-1987 The Rover Don Pedro RSC Swan Theatre Stratford-upon-Avon, The Peoples Theatre Newcastle upon Tyne [29]
1986 Richard III Harry Percy RSC Royal Shakespeare Theatre Stratford-upon-Avon, Tyne Theatre Newcastle upon Tyne, Barbican Theatre London [29]
1987 The Storm Vanya Kudryash RSC Pit, London [29]
1987 A Midsummer Night's Dream Lysander RSC Barbican Theatre, London [29]
1989 Merchant of Venice[30] Bassanio Peter Hall Company Phoenix Theatre London, 46th Street Theater New York (UK) 01.06.1989, (US) 20.12.1989 to 24.02.1990
1997 Cargo Cult Barbican Theatre 02.09.1987
1999 50 Revolutions Oxford Stage Company Whitehall Theatre 07.09.1999 to 25.09.1999
2000 Speed the plow Duke of York's, London 29.06.2000 to 19.08.2000
2008 Quartermaine's Terms Quartermaine Theatre Royal Windsor, New Victoria Theatre Woking, The Richmond Theatre, Theatre Royal Bath, Theatre Royal Brighton 13.05.2008 to 21.06.2008
2013 The Audience Gordon Brown Gielgud Theatre 15.02.2013 to 15.06.2013
2013/14 Wolf Hall[31] Henry VIII RSC Swan Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon 11.12.2013 to 29.03.2014


  1. ^ Nathaniel Parker Biography (1962–)
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Celebrating 150 years". LAMDA. Retrieved 20 January 2013. 
  4. ^
  5. ^ "Nathaniel Parker joins Merlin". Sci-Fi Bulletin. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  6. ^ a b Kelly, Brendan (2 November 2012). "Louise Penny’s detective novels get small-screen treatment from CBC-TV". Montreal Gazette (Montreal). Retrieved 19 November 2014. 
  7. ^ "Olivier awards 2015 – full list of winners". The Guardian. 12 April 2015. Retrieved 13 April 2015. 
  8. ^
  9. ^ "BBC One: The Outcast: Episode 1 credits". Retrieved 20 July 2015. 
  10. ^ "Nathaniel Parker Lists of Work (filmography)". Nathaniel Parker Official Homepage. Retrieved 10 January 2013. 
  11. ^ "Never Come Back Series". BFI. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  12. ^ "Performance: Absolute Hell". BFI. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  13. ^ "The Black Candle". BFI. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  14. ^ "Look at it this way". BFI. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  15. ^ "The Vision Thing". BFI. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  16. ^ "Unsigned". BFI. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  17. ^ "Without Walls : Errol Flynn". BFI. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  18. ^ "GEFÄHRLICHE SPIELE". BFI. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  19. ^ "A Little Loving". BFI. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  20. ^ "The Short Cut". BFI. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  21. ^ "La BIBBIA: DAVID". BFI. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  22. ^ "Trust Series". BFI. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  23. ^ "Lover's Prayer". IMDB. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  24. ^ "Pretending to be Judith". BFI. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  25. ^ "A class Apart". BBC. Retrieved 12 January 2013. 
  26. ^ "Sergeant Slaughter". IMDB. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  27. ^ "The Charles Dickens Show: Health". BBC. Retrieved 12 January 2013. 
  28. ^ a b "Nathaniel Parker Lists of Work (theatregraphy)". Nathaniel Parker Official Homepage. Retrieved 10 January 2013. 
  29. ^ a b c d e f g "RSC Archive (Name Search)". RSC Archive Catalogue. Retrieved 20 January 2013. 
  30. ^ "The Merchant of Venice". Internet Broadway Database. Retrieved 2013-01-10. 
  31. ^ "Wolf Hall RSC". RSC. Retrieved 2013-07-24. 

External links[edit]