Seasoned British actor Timothy West, noted for his great power and command on the classical stage, has played King Lear three times. The latest was in 2003 for English Touring Theatre on a UK tour and at the Old Vic in London.
The Stephen Unwin directed production toured for three months in autumn 2002 to great acclaim, winning West a Manchester Evening News Award for Best Actor. His moving portrayal of the fallen king at the Old Vic received rave reviews and bought in the crowds, extending the season less than a week after the play opened.
Timothy has played other roles in the Shakespearean masterpiece, including Gloucester to Ian Holm’s moanch ain the National Theatre’s 1997 production, directed by Richard Eyre, that was also filmed for the BBC.
I caught up with Timothy as he left the Donmar Warehouse last night, where he is part of a huge ensemble cast for Josie Rourke‘s The Vote. I showed him my sketch of him as Lear asking him if he wouldn’t mind signing it, and he smiled, saying, of course and duly ‘graphed it.