Friday 29 September 2017

Remembering Benjamin Whitrow

It was with a huge amount of sadness that I learned of the passing of Benjamin Whitrow. I was fortunate enough to work with Ben on An Evening with Jane Austen and to spend time with him away from the stage and dressing room, enjoying the company of a gent who, though growing frail as the years passed, was no less filled with mischief for it.

In many ways Ben reminded me of my grandfather, an irresistible combination of intelligence, wit and sparky silliness. He was passionate about acting and theatre and was filled with stories not only of his own career but his encounters with some very well known names indeed. Not all of those stories are repeatable, but each was golden.

My last memory of Ben comes just a couple of weeks ago when we all went for a celebratory drink after a performance of An Evening with Jane Austen at the Jane Austen Festival in Bath. Ben was on top form, holding court amongst our party with a very generous glass of brandy to chase away the autumn chill. He was, as ever, the life of the gathering. 

He was a force of mischievous nature and we will all miss him dreadfully.


Anji said...

Lovely tribute to someone who sounds like a lovely man, Catherine. Thank you.

Catherine Curzon said...

He was a wonderful character; I feel lucky to have known him.

Jan Ashton said...

Thank you for sharing this, Catherine. I knew him only onscreen, and I'm happy to hear the wry intelligence I saw there was his true self.

Mary said...

Benjamin played Mr B wonderfully!!! He seemed like a true gent!
RIP Benjamin Whithrow.

Catherine Curzon said...

message 1: by Carole (in Canada)

Carole (in Canada) So sorry to hear the loss of your dear friend. Mr Whitrow's portrayal of Mr. Bennet was my all favourite. He embodied the persona.

Catherine Curzon said...

message 2: by Teresa

Teresa Oh no!!! I hadn't heard this news. I loved his portrayal of Mr Bennett but I have to say I thought he was a fine actor.

Laurel Ann (Austenprose) said...

Sad news. You are so fortunate to have known him.

I suspect that Mr. Collins will be taking possession of Longborn, forcing Mrs. Bennet to live in the hedgerows.

Unknown said...

So saddened to hear the news of his death. I will always have fond memories of him peforming in An Evening with Jane Austen at the V&A.