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 Patrick Magee. Zulu

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PostSubject: Patrick Magee. Zulu   Thu Apr 08, 2010 11:22 pm

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Patrick Magee (31 March 1922 – 14 August 1982) was a Northern Irish Tony Award-winning actor best known for his collaborations with Samuel Beckett and Harold Pinter, as well as his appearances in horror films and in Stanley Kubrick's A Clockwork Orange.

Born Patrick McGee in Armagh, Northern Ireland, he changed his name to Magee for the stage, after attending St. Patrick's Roman Catholic College. His first stage experience in Ireland was with Anew McMaster's touring company, performing the works of Shakespeare. It was here that he first worked with Pinter.

He was then brought to London by Tyrone Guthrie for a series of Irish plays. In 1957 he met Beckett and recorded some of his prose for BBC radio. Beckett was so excited with his voice that he wrote Krapp's Last Tape especially for him (it was recorded by the BBC in 1972). Beckett's biographer Anthony Cronin wrote that "there was a sense in which, as an actor, he had been waiting for Beckett as Beckett had been waiting for him."

In 1964, he joined the Royal Shakespeare Company, after Pinter, directing his own play The Birthday Party, specifically requested him for the role of McCann, and stated he was the strongest in the cast. In 1965 he appeared in Marat/Sade, and when the play transferred to Broadway it won him a Tony Award. He also appeared in the 1966 RSC production of Staircase opposite Paul Scofield.

Early film roles for the 5`8" 175-pound Magee included Joseph Losey's The Criminal (1960) and The Servant (1963), the latter an adaptation scripted by Pinter. He also appeared as Surgeon-Major Reynolds in Zulu (1964), Séance on a Wet Afternoon (1964), and the film versions of Marat/Sade (1967) and The Birthday Party (1968). But he is perhaps best known for his role as the victimised writer Frank Alexander, who tortures Alex DeLarge with Beethoven, in Stanley Kubrick's film A Clockwork Orange (1971).

He went on to appear in Kubrick's Barry Lyndon (1975), Young Winston (1972), The Final Programme (1973), Sir Henry at Rawlinson End (1980) and Chariots of Fire (1981), but was most often seen in horror films. These included Roger Corman's The Masque of Red Death (1964), and the Boris Karloff vehicle Die, Monster, Die! (1965) for AIP; The Skull (1965), Tales from the Crypt (1972) and Asylum (1972) for Amicus Productions; and Demons of the Mind for Hammer Film Productions.

He married Belle Sherry, also a native of County Armagh; they had two children, twins Mark and Caroline (born February 1961, London).

Patrick Magee died of a heart attack on 14 August 1982, aged 60.
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