Drawing: Alan Rickman, Lily Rabe, Jerry O’Connell, Hettienne Park and Hamish Linklater in Seminar on Broadway

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Alan Rickman originated the role of Leonard,a caustic professor in Theresa Rebeck’s SEMINAR, which had its World Premiere at the Golden Theatre on Broadway in April 2012. The play revolves around Rickman’s character conducting a ten-week-long writing seminar for four young novelists. I had met Alan a few times and I don’t think signing is one of his favourite chores, but he was very pleasant to chat with.

Many years ago I tried for a graph through the mail and was politely refused by his agent. I sent the sketch, thinking nothing to lose… except the sketch, of course! He was obviously signing at the stage door, but sending stuff to the venues is hit and miss, depending on their policy for unsolicited mail. To my delight the sketch was not only returned, pronto, but dedicated and signed by the other cast members – Lily Rabe, Jerry O’Connell, Hettienne Park and Hamish Linklater. So next time I see Alan, I won’t have to bother him for a sig and can thank him in person.