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Richard Griffiths Glimpse of History Education

Written By Julianna Benson on Friday, March 29, 2013 | 11:47 PM

Richard Griffiths Glimpse of History EducationRichard Griffiths Glimpse of History Education - Richard Griffiths has died on Thursday in Coventry, England. He was 65. As a tribute to of his achievement this time I'll tell you about At 2007 Former RSC actor, Richard Griffiths, has been awarded an OBE for his services to drama.

The 65 years old actor, who lives in a small village just outside Stratford-upon-Avon, was born to deaf and mute parents on the 31st July 1947 at Thornaby-on-Tees, North Yorkshire. His father was a steel worker, and his mother a so called 'bagger' in a local supermarket.

Griffiths learned sign language as a young child so that he could converse with his parents, at the same
time developing his spoken English by listening to the radio.

Like many of his generation he left school at 15, getting himself a job as a porter. He returned to education some years later to study drama (he'd been smitten by acting after attending a drama class at Stockton and Billingham College) at the Manchester Polytechnic School of Drama (see HERE).

After graduating Griffiths was lucky enough to find a variety of acting and stage-managing parts with the last dying remnants of regional rep.

He was eventually discovered by the RSC, where his 1983 portrayal of the King in Henry VIII (alongside John Thaw as Cardinal Wolsey) was rightly received with great acclaim.

Although Griffiths had appeared in a string of TV series, such as The Sweeney and Bergerac, throughout the late 1970s and into the 1980s, it would be as a result of the high profile acclaim he received for his RSC work, and his iconic portrayal of Uncle Monty in the film Withnail & I , that pretty much ensured an eventual TV series of his own. This materialised in the form of the mid 1990s Pie in the Sky, where, as Henry Crabbe, he appeared as an ex-copper-cum-chef who, when not running a restaurant was still solving crimes. The BBC series ran for three years and undoubtedly brought Griffiths wider attention that has resulted, in the last few years, in many major film roles, not least as Vernon Dursley in the Harry Potter series, and Hector in Alan Bennett's award winning The History Boys - a role he made his own in both the West End and Broadway productions.
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