Michael Richard

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Michael Richard (19**-). Actor on stage, TV and film.


He is married to Louise Saint Claire


He was schooled in Rhodesia after which he enrolled at the University of Cape Town's Drama Department for a performer's diploma course at the Little Theatre, while studying BA at UCT. Since the combination of the two courses was brutally taxing, he was allowed by his parents to concentrate on his theatre work alone.


He joined PACT in 1974 as a member of Ken Leach's original The Arena Company. He remained with PACT for three years. After a spell in Cape Town he worked as a freelance actor.

Contribution to SA theatre, film, media and/or performance

Performed in Santiago (Voyage of the Santiago), Subject to Fits, Tug o' War (at the Arena Theatre), Where Has Tommy Flowers Gone? (at the Arena Theatre), Fangs (as “Suckular”), London Assurance (as “Young Courtly”), The Director of the Opera (as “Toto”), Hamlet (as “Hamlet”), Archy and Mehitabel (as “Archy”), Coca Cola, The Unvarnished Truth (as “Tom”), Macbeth (as “Macduff”), Elizabeth 1, Session, Duchess of Malfi, Major Barbara, Dr Hero, Homecoming, Bedroom Farce', A Midsummer Night's Dream, The School for Scandal, Rookery Nook, Macbeth, The Indian wants the Bronx, The Unvarnished Truth.

TV work included Westgate I and Westgate III, The Settlers, Right U Are if You Think You Are, Macbeth, A Midsummer Night's Dream, The Ancient Mariner, Hamlet and The Girl Who Hated Jimmicks. Films include Shaka Zulu.

Plays include Post Mortem (The Space, 197*) under the name Mike Richard?*], West (Steven Berkoff, Baxter Theatre, 19**), Children of a Lesser God (Pieter Toerien, 1982), Decadence (Steven Berkoff, repeated a number of times, including 1992 and 2003), Race (Mamet, Grahamstown Festival, 2012) Film and TV credits include: ***

He starred in Robert Mohr’s production of The Tempest with Patrick Magee, Paul Slabolepszy and Bill Flynn for PACT at the Alexander Theatre in 1975. He starred in Ken Leach’s production of Feydeau’s A Flea in her Ear together with Dorothy-Ann Gould, Diane Wilson, Richard Haines, Paul Slabolepszy, Frantz Dobrowsky, Annelisa Weiland and Lesley Nott for PACT at the Alexander Theatre in 1976. He starred in Ken Leach’s production of the musical Fangs with Paul Slabolepszy, Annelisa Weiland, Lesley Nott and Bill Flynn for PACT in 1977. He starred in Hamlet, directed by Robert Mohr for PACT in March 1978. He directed a revival of El Grande de Coca Cola starring Elizabeth Rae, Wilson Dunster, Gillian Harris, Etienne Puren and Alan Goldstein for PACT at the Arena Theatre in 1979. He starred in the Toerien-Firth Company production of Royce Ryton’s The Unvarnished Truth with Anthony Fridjhon, Nicholas Ellenbogen and Lynne White with direction by Joan Kemp-Welch at the Intimate Theatre in 1979. He starred in Geoffrey Sutherland’s production of Joan Littlewood’s Oh! What a Lovely War together with Judy Page, Gay Lambert, Michael McCabe, James White and Erica Rogers for PACT in 1980. He starred in Israel Horowitz’s The Indian Wants the Bronx together with Bill Curry and Jonathan Rands and directed by Bobby Heaney at the Laager in 1980. He starred in Robert Mohr’s production of A Midsummer Night's Dream together with Louise Saint Claire, Etienne Puren and Tobie Cronjé during the opening season of the Pretoria State Theatre in 1981. He starred in Mark Medoff’s Children of a Lesser God together with Jean St. Clair with direction by Philipa Ailion at the Market Theatre in 1982. He starred in Ray Cooney’s Run for Your Wife together with Rex Garner which Pieter Toerien presented at the Alhambra Theatre in February 1984 after a run in Cape Town. He starred in Mastrosimone’s Extremities together with Lena Farugia with direction by Hugh Wooldridge for Pieter Toerien in 1984. He starred in Bobby Heaney’s production of Brian Friel’s Translations together with Patrick Mynhardt in 1985. He starred in Michael Frayn’s adaptation of Chekhov’s comedy called Wild Honey together with Jana Cilliers under Bobby Heaney’s direction at the Alexander Theatre in August 1986. He starred in Joe Orton’s Loot together with James Borthwick, Michael McCabe and Aletta Bezuidenhout under Terrence Shank’s direction for PACT in October 1986. He starred in PACT’s production of Every Good Boy Deserves Favour, which was a collaboration of Tom Stoppard’s text Every Good Boy and André Previn’s music, together with Michael McCabe, Danny Keogh and Lynne White under Dawn Lindberg’s direction in 1986. It won the Vita Award for best production. He starred in Edmund Kean at the Leonard Rayne Theatre for Pieter Toerien in June 1985. He starred in Terrence Shank’s production of David Wiltse’s Doubles at the Alhambra Theatre in December 1986. He starred in PACT’s revival of Look Back in Anger at the Alexander Theatre in 1987. He starred in revival of Anthony Shaffer’s Sleuth at the André Huguenet Theatre in 1988. He also starred in The Winter's Tale for PACT in 1988. He starred in Lerner and Lowe’s Camelot at the State Theatre in 1989. He starred in Janice Honeyman’s production of Sinbad's African Adventures at the Civic Theatre in 1992. He starred in Steven Berkoff’s Decadence in 1993. In 2007 he performed in Fiddler on the Roof as Tevye at the Nelson Mandela Theatre, Johannesburg.

Michael Richard played the role of the American painter Mark Rothko in Red at the Grahamstown Festival and at Theatre on the Bay in 2012, with his son Jeremy Richard in the role of the painter's assistant. This thrilling play explores the turbulent creative process of famous 20th Century American artist, Mark Rothko. Written by John Logan, screenwriter for the Oscar-winning films Gladiator, The Aviator, Rango and Hugo. Directed by Steven Stead. Design by Greg King.

With Graham Hopkins and Sello Maake Ka-Ncube, he also starred in the volatile Race by David Mamet at the 2012 Grahamstown Festival where the title almost gives the essence away.

Awards, etc

Fleur du Cap Best Actor award in 1983 for his roles as Iago in Othello and James Leeds in Children of a Lesser God.

Nominated for best actor by DALRO in 1984.

Richard, Michael : Hotline; Death Defying Acts' [best lead actor]; FNB Vita 1995/1996.


SACD 1974; 1975/76; 1977/78; 1978/79; 1979/80: 1980/81.

Profile written by Michael Venables, The Rand Daily Mail, 12 November 1974.

Edmund Keane theatre programme, 1985. Rapport-Tydskrif, 22 May 1988.

Tucker, 1997.

Rapport Gauteng, 15 July 2007.

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