Jeremy Child Obituary, Jeremy Child has passed away unexpectedly
- by Alex Danvers
Jeremy Child Obituary, Death – Despite having succeeded to a baronetcy in 1971, actor Jeremy Child, who died on Monday at the age of 77 after a protracted illness, was a bit of a maverick. After years of deteriorating health, a child dies. In the 2004 play Ying Tong, he played a psychotherapist who changes into a Jewish leprechaun in his final appearance on stage in the West End. The Goons and Spike Milligan’s desolation are the subjects of the drama. Early in the 1970s, he began his career at the Royal Court in London in a few plays and provincial repertory companies. The pieces were A Fart for Europe by David Edgar and Howard Brenton, which opposed Britain’s membership into the Common Market, and Crete and Sergeant Pepper by John Antrobus, a surreal comedy about war prisoners in the Mediterranean (1972). He selected the theater over the Guards and the Foreign Office, which were expected career paths (1973).
He played the role of a military policeman in the previous play using his natural talents for aristocratic haughtiness, a very fine demeanor and appearance (he was tall, blonde, and lithe), and an innate sense of mischievous fun. He made the most of these innate abilities. Jovial is short for “jovial,” which is what his friends called him. One of his most enduring roles was the comedic aviator in George Bernard Shaw’s Misalliance, which was shown at the Mermaid and also took place in 1973. In Alan Strachan’s play, he and a Polish acrobat broke into an Edwardian country house conservatory to attend a talk about marriage and socialism being moderated by Bill Fraser and Caroline Blakiston.
Despite this, Child’s upbringing equipped him for a career in theater and film that saw him play lawyers, legislators, corporate leaders, and ambassadors. He has played three different foreign secretaries on television: Francis Pym, Margaret Thatcher’s foreign secretary, in Ian Curteis’ The Falklands Play (2002), the fictional Charles Seymour in Jeffrey Archer’s First Among Equals (1986), and Sir Samuel Hoare as George VI and Elizabeth Bowes-spouse Lyon’s in Bertie and Elizabeth (2002). Sir Coles John Child, the second baronet, a diplomat who worked for the Foreign Office, and his wife Sheila welcomed Child into the world in Woking, Surrey. Sir Coles John Child, the first baronet, was Sir Coles John Child’s father (nee Mathewson).
He finished his education at Eton, Aiglon College in Switzerland, and the University of Poitiers in France before working as a reluctant broker in the City for a brief period of time prior to starting his studies at the Bristol Old Vic drama school. He made his professional theatrical debut in 1965 at the Bristol Old Vic in a version of the play Lock Up Your Daughters by Lionel Bart and Laurie Johnson. After that, he continued to repertory theaters in Colchester, Windsor, and Canterbury. He took over in the second cast of Barry England’s Conduct Unbecoming at the Queen’s (previously Sondheim), a musical about a scandal that befell a British regiment stationed in India in the 1880s, for his debut appearance on the West End. The play was a huge success.
He was building up a strong resume at this time in oppositional British films to serve as a bulwark for the “establishment.” For instance, he portrayed the cunning manager of a pop singer (Paul Jones) who was assuming the role of a celebrity religious guru in Peter Watkins’ prophetic movie Privilege (1967). And he joined a distinguished cast in Andrew Sinclair’s The Breaking of Bumbo (1970), a movie that was never given a wide release in the UK, which included Richard Warwick, Edward Fox, Timothy Carlton (Benedict Cumberbatch’s father), and Joanna Lumley, a lifelong friend. Timothy Carlton, Benedict Cumberbatch’s grandfather, and other significant cast members were also there.
In 1974 at the Westminster, he had a wonderful cameo as a titled bootlegger in the Gershwins’ Oh, Kay! starring Amanda Barrie. In 1977, at the Globe (now the Gielgud), he took over as one of the old college reunion boys in Michael Frayn’s Donkeys’ Years. Following that, he improved a 1980 Lyric Hammersmith production of Noel Coward’s Hay Fever.
Jeremy Child Obituary, Death – Despite having succeeded to a baronetcy in 1971, actor Jeremy Child, who died on Monday at the age of 77 after a protracted illness, was a bit of a maverick. After years of deteriorating health, a child dies. In the 2004 play Ying Tong, he played a psychotherapist who changes…