Errol John

Biography

Errol John (20 December 1924 – 10 July 1988) was a Trinidadian actor and playwright. Biography Born in Port of Spain, Trinidad, John was home-schooled, then began his career as an artist and journalist. Deciding to pursue a career in acting, he joined the Whitehall Theatre Group in Trinidad. Following the Second World War, John moved to England in 1951 and continued to work in the theatre, appearing on the London stage in productions including Salome (1954), Carson McCullers' play, The Member of the Wedding at the Royal Court Theatre (directed by Tony Richardson), The Merchant of Venice (1962), Measure for Measure (1963) and Othello (at the Old Vic, with Leo McKern and Adrienne Corri in the cast). He had several small roles in films such films as The African Queen (1951), The Heart of the Matter (1953), The Emperor Jones (1953), Simba (1955), The Nun's Story (1959), and Guns at Batasi (1964). He gained a major role in the BBC's A Man from the Sun (1956), alongside Cy Grant, Nadia Cattouse and Colin Douglas, and later had a significant role in the television series No Hiding Place (BBC, 1961) and in the five-part series Rainbow City written for him by John Elliott. His first script written for a play was The Tout (1949), then in 1957 his Moon on a Rainbow Shawl won The Observer's Play of the Year award. It was produced at the Royal Court in 1958, and in 1962 in New York City. Over the half-century since then the play has achieved iconic status as a classic of Caribbean theatre, regularly staged internationally, in countries as diverse as Iceland, Hungary and Argentina.[3] In the UK there have been notable productions at the Almeida Theatre (1988, directed by Maya Angelou), at Stratford East, and most recently at the Cottesloe Theatre, Royal National Theatre (2012) in an acclaimed production directed by Michael Buffong. The Observer′s reviewer wrote: "It is marvellous to report that, 55 years on, this play, in its original version, holds its own and seems fresh as the day it was written." On 27 May 1958, a radio adaptation of the play, scripted by Errol John and entitled Small Island Moon, was broadcast on the BBC's Third Programme; it was produced by Donald McWhinney and Robin Midgley, with a cast led by John himself and also including Barbara Assoon, Sylvia Wynter, Lionel Ngakane, Andrew Salkey and Robert Adams. Errol John's other writing included Force Majeure, The Dispossessed and Hasta Luego: Three Screenplays (1967). For television he wrote Teleclub (1954), and Dawn (1963) and was also the author of The Exiles, part of the BBC Wednesday Play series. He attempted to join the US film industry, but was limited to minor roles in Assault on a Queen (1966) and Buck and the Preacher (1972). John died in Camden, North London. He was posthumously awarded the Trinidad & Tobago Chaconia Medal (Silver), for Drama, in 1988. Philmography The Heart of the Matter (1953) Simba (1955) Odongo (1956) The Nun's Story (1959) The Sins of Rachel Cade (1961) PT 109 (1963) Man in the Middle (1963) Guns at Batasi (1964) Assault on a Queen (1966) Buck and the Preacher (1972) Sheena (1984)

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Known For
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The African Queen

Undetermined Role (uncredited)

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The Sins of Rachel Cade

Kulu, Assistant to Rachel

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Assault On A Queen

Linc Langley

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The Heart of the Matter

African Policeman (uncredited)

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Guns at Batasi

Lt. Boniface

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PT 109

Benjamin Kevu

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Man in the Middle

Sgt. Jackson

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The Last Days of Patton

Sgt. 1st Class George Meeks

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Sheena

Boto

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Buck and the Preacher

Joshua

Starring In
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The Last Days of Patton

Sgt. 1st Class George Meeks

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Sheena

Boto

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Buck and the Preacher

Joshua

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Assault On A Queen

Linc Langley

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Guns at Batasi

Lt. Boniface

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Man in the Middle

Sgt. Jackson

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PT 109

Benjamin Kevu

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The Sins of Rachel Cade

Kulu, Assistant to Rachel

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The Nun's Story

Illunga (African convert)

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The Heart of the Matter

African Policeman (uncredited)

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The African Queen

Undetermined Role (uncredited)

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