Felicity Ann Kendal

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Felicity Ann Kendal

Birthplace: Olton Park, Solihull, UK
Immediate Family:

Daughter of Richard Geoffrey Bragg and Laura May Kendal
Ex-wife of <private> Rudman and <private> Henley
Sister of Jennifer Kapoor

Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Felicity Ann Kendal

Felicity Kendal

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Felicity Kendal CBE Born Felicity Ann Bragg (1946-09-25) 25 September 1946 (age 66) Olton, Warwickshire, England, UK Nationality British Other names Felicity Kendall Occupation Actress Years active 1947–present (stage) 1965–present (screen) Spouse(s) Drewe Henley (m. 1968–79, div.) Michael Rudman (m. 1983–90, div.) Partner(s) Tom Stoppard (1991–98) Michael Rudman (1998–present) Children Charley Jacob Parents Geoffrey Kendal Laura Liddell Relatives Jennifer Kendal (sister)

Felicity Ann Kendal, CBE

(born 25 September 1946) is an English actress known for her television and stage work. Kendal has appeared in numerous stage and screen roles over a 45-year career, and the role that brought attention to her career is Barbara Good in the 1975 television series The Good Life.

Early life

Felicity Kendal was born in Olton, Warwickshire, England, in 1946.[1] She is the younger daughter of Geoffrey Kendal, an actor and manager, and his wife Laura (née Lidell).[1][2] Her sister, Jennifer Kendal (died 1984, aged 51),[3] also became an actress.

Kendal spent much of her childhood in India as her father was an English actor-manager who made his living leading a repertory company on tours of India.[2] The family would perform Shakespeare before royalty one day, and in rough rural villages the next where audiences included many schoolchildren.[4][5] Her father had adopted his birthplace of Kendal (then Westmorland now Cumbria) as his stage name, his original surname being Bragg.[citation needed] Felicity Kendal was educated at six convents in India.[citation needed] At age 17, Kendal contracted typhoid in Calcutta.[6] She left India at the age of 20.[3]

The Good Life

In 1975 Kendal had her big break on television with the BBC sitcom The Good Life. She and Richard Briers starred as Barbara and Tom Good – a middle-class suburban couple who decide to quit the rat race and become self-sufficient, much to the consternation of their snooty but well-meaning neighbours Margo and Jerry Leadbetter (played by Penelope Keith and Paul Eddington). Kendal appeared in all 30 episodes which extended over four series from 1975 to 1978.

Kendal has stated that she can be "short-tempered and difficult" – which is in contrast to the character of Barbara – with whom the public have come to associate her.[3]

Stage work

Kendal made her stage debut aged nine months, when she was carried on stage as a changeling boy in A Midsummer Night's Dream.[1]

She made her London stage debut in Minor Murder (1967), and went on to star in a number of well regarded plays stage career blossomed during the 1980s and 1990s when she formed a close professional association with Sir Tom Stoppard, starring in the first productions of many of his plays, including The Real Thing (1982), Hapgood (1988), Arcadia (1993), and Indian Ink (1995). This last was originally a radio play and the role was written for her.

She won the Evening Standard Theatre Award in 1989 for her performances in Much Ado About Nothing and Ivanov.

In 2002, Kendal starred in Charlotte Jones's play, Humble Boy, when it transferred from the National Theatre to the West End. In 2006 she starred in the West End revival of Amy's View by David Hare.

In 2008 she appeared in the West End in a revival of Noël Coward's play The Vortex.

In 2009 she appeared in the play The Last Cigarette (by Simon Gray) and in 2010 in Mrs Warren's Profession (by Shaw). Both played at the Chichester Festival Theatre and subsequently in the West End.

In 2013 she will star in the first London revival of Relatively Speaking by Alan Ayckbourn.[7]

Television work

]Kendal has appeared in many television series (both before and after The Good Life), including:

Love Story, (1966) – two episodes. The Wednesday Play, (1966). ITV Play of the Week, (1967). Half Hour Story, (1967). Boy Meets Girl, (1967). Thirty-Minute Theatre, (1967). Man in a Suitcase, (1968). The Tenant of Wildfell Hall, (1968 and 1969) – two episodes as Rose. The Woodlanders, (1970) – four episodes as Grace Melbury. Jason King, (1972). The Dolly Dialogues, (1973). Dolly, (1973) – three episodes as Dolly. Edward the Seventh, (1975) – seven episodes as Vicky. Murder, (1976). Do You Remember?, (1978).

The Good Life, (1975–1978) – 30 episodes over four series as Barbara Good. 

ITV Sunday Night Drama, (1967–1978) – three episodes as Dorothy Wordsworth and Nicola. Wings of Song, (1978), television film. Twelfth Night, (1980), television film. Solo, (1981–1982) – thirteen episodes (over two series) as Gemma Palmer. On the Razzle, (1983), television film. The Mistress, (1985–1987) – twelve episodes as Maxine. The Camomile Lawn, (1992) – five episodes as Helena. Shakespeare: The Animated Tales, (1992) – one episode (Romeo and Juliet) as narrator. Honey for Tea, (1994) – seven episodes as Nancy Belasco. The World of Peter Rabbit and Friends, (1995) Rosemary & Thyme, (2003–2006) – 22 episodes (over three seasons) as Rosemary Boxer The Secret Show, (2007) - voice role as Lucy Woo Doctor Who, (2008) – guest appearance in the episode "The Unicorn and the Wasp".

From 1976, Kendal has appeared as herself in about 40 television shows and documentaries, the most recent being:

Strictly Come Dancing (series 8), (2010)[1] – partnered with Vincent Simone. The couple were eliminated in the eighth week (staged in Blackpool). Felicity Kendal's Indian Shakespeare Quest, (2012) Piers Morgan's Life Stories, (2012) Film work [edit]Kendal's film roles are:

Shakespeare Wallah, (1965). The film (by Merchant Ivory) was loosely based on the Kendal family's real-life experiences in post-colonial India.[2] Valentino, (1977). We're Back! A Dinosaur's Story, (1993) – voiced Elsa. Parting Shots, (1998). How Proust Can Change Your Life, (2000) – as narrator. Awards [edit] This section of a biographical article needs additional citations for verification. Please help by adding reliable sources. Contentious material about living persons that is unsourced or poorly sourced must be removed immediately, especially if potentially libelous or harmful. (December 2012)

1976 – Most Promising Newcomer - Variety Club 1979 – Best Actress - Variety Club 1980 – Clarence Derwent Award 1981 – Rear of the Year[8] 1984 – Woman of the Year - Best Actress - Variety Club 1989 – Best Actress - Evening Standard Theatre Awards Kendal was made a CBE in 1995 for services to drama.[1]

In 1995 (at age 49) Kendal was selected as one of the "100 sexiest women in the world" by FHM magazine.[9]

Personal life [edit]Kendal's first marriage to Drewe Henley (1968 to 1979) and her second to Michael Rudman (1983 to 1990) ended in divorce. Kendal has two sons: Charley, from her marriage to Henley, and Jacob, from her marriage to Rudman. In 1991 she left Rudman, and subsequently started a relationship with playwright Tom Stoppard.[10] The affair with Stoppard ended in 1998, and Kendal has since reunited with Michael Rudman.[10]

Kendal was brought up as a Catholic. She converted to Judaism at the time of her second marriage,[3] and has stated about the conversion, "I felt I was returning to my roots".[9] Her conversion took more than three years; she has stated that her decision to convert had "nothing to do" with her husband.[11]

In 1998 Kendal published a book of memoirs titled White Cargo.[4]

When asked (by The Guardian in 2010) who she would invite to her "dream dinner party", Kendal replied "Emmeline Pankhurst, Gandhi, Byron, Eddie Izzard, George Bernard Shaw, Golda Meir, Marlene Dietrich".[6]



^ a b c d e "Felicity Kendal". Strictly Come Dancing. BBC Online. 2000. Retrieved 14 December 2012. ^ a b c "Shakespeare Wallah". Merchant Ivory Productions. Retrieved 15 December 2012. ^ a b c d McGibbon, Rob (10 February 2012). "Felicity Kendal: The Good Life portrayed me as sweetness and light, but I can be difficult and very short-tempered". Daily Mail (Associated Newspapers Ltd). Retrieved 15 December 2012. ^ a b Kendal 1998. ^ "Meet Jennifer Kendal". Good Wrench. 2000. Archived from the original on 25 October 2009. Retrieved 14 December 2012. ^ a b Greenstreet, Rosanna (27 March 2010). "Q&A: Felicity Kendal". The Guardian (Guardian News and Media). Retrieved 15 December 2012. ^ Champion, Lindsay (23 October 2012). "Alan Ayckbourn's Relatively Speaking, Starring Felicity Kendal, Set for West End Run". London Buzz. broadway.com. Retrieved 15 February 2013. ^ "History of Event". Rear of the Year. 2012. Retrieved 7 January 2012. ^ a b Garvey, Anne (26 October 2006). "Felicity Kendal's good (Jewish) life". The Jewish Chronicle. Retrieved 15 December 2012. ^ a b Hardy, Rebecca (2 October 2010). "'I've never felt sexier': Felicity Kendal on men, her new tattoos – and why she can't wait to sizzle on Strictly". Daily Mail (Associated Newspapers Ltd). Retrieved 14 December 2012. ^ http://www.saga.co.uk/saga-magazine/2013/april/felicity-kendal.aspx


Kendal, Felicity (1998). White Cargo. University of Michigan, US: Michael Joseph. ISBN 0718143116. External links [edit]Felicity Kendal at the Internet Movie Database The Good Life at the Internet Movie Database

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Felicity Ann Kendal's Timeline

September 25, 1946
Solihull, UK