33 Facts About Donald Sinden


Donald Sinden then became highly regarded as an award-winning Shakespearean and West End theatre actor and television sitcom star, winning the 1977 Evening Standard Award for Best Actor for King Lear, and starring in the sitcoms Two's Company and Never the Twain.


Donald Sinden was born in St Budeaux, Plymouth, Devon on 9 October 1923, the middle child of chemist Alfred Edward Donald Sinden and his wife Mabel Agnes.


Donald Sinden made his first stage appearance at the amateur Brighton Little Theatre in 1941, stepping into a part in place of his cousin Frank, who had been called up to war and so was unable to appear.


In 1942, in Hove, Donald Sinden befriended Lord Alfred Douglas, who had been Oscar Wilde's lover.


Donald Sinden is believed to have been the last surviving person to have known Douglas.


Donald Sinden became associated with his character of "Benskin" in the Doctor film series as the duffel-coated medical student, regularly failing his finals and spending most of his time chasing pretty nurses, accompanied by his trade-mark "wolf-growl".


Donald Sinden was the recipient of several "audience-based" awards during this period, including "The actor who made most progress during 1954".


Donald Sinden has usually been left, crestfallen and jilted, in the last reel.


Donald Sinden was a leading figure in the campaign to found the Theatre Museum in London's Covent Garden in the 1980s.


In 2007, Donald Sinden embarked on a UK, European and American theatre tour to talk about his life, work and anecdotes in An Evening with.


Donald Sinden sought and received advice about the character's costume and mannerisms in the role from the Regency novelist Georgette Heyer.


In 2013, Donald Sinden presented a documentary series called Great West End Theatres, which describes the history and stories associated with each of 40 London theatres.


Sir Donald Sinden has been let loose and the effect is enchanting beyond belief.


Donald Sinden appeared in ITV's 1960 adaptation of The Mystery of Edwin Drood, starring as John Jasper.


Donald Sinden was cast in the role of an English butler, Robert, to Elaine Stritch's American character, Dorothy.


Stritch and Donald Sinden sang the theme tune for the opening credits to the programme, which received a BAFTA nomination.


In 1979, Donald Sinden presented a documentary series on BBC2, Discovering English Churches inspired by his grandfather's architectural drawings and watercolours.


From 1981, Donald Sinden starred in the Thames Television situation comedy, Never the Twain.


Donald Sinden played snooty antiques dealer Simon Peel who lived next door to a competitor Oliver Smallbridge.


One episode in 1990 had Donald Sinden being literally picked up by two police officers who were played by his own actor sons, Jeremy and Marc.


Donald Sinden was the subject of an extended edition of This Is Your Life in 1985 when he was surprised by Eamonn Andrews while filming on location in Surrey.


Donald Sinden was regularly spoofed on Spitting Image, the 1980s British satirical television programme in which famous people were lampooned by caricatured latex puppets.


Donald Sinden starred in the Walt Disney Productions family film The Island at the Top of the World, playing Sir Anthony Ross, which was filmed at Disney's studios in Burbank, California.


Donald Sinden voiced the reader in the BBC radio production of Agatha Christie's The Adventure of the Christmas pudding.


Donald Sinden wrote two autobiographical volumes: A Touch of the Memoirs and Laughter in the Second Act, edited the Everyman Book of Theatrical Anecdotes, wrote a book to coincide with his BBC TV series The English Country Church and a collection of "epitaphs and final utterances" titled The Last Word.


Donald Sinden was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1979 and knighted in 1997.


Donald Sinden became a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts in 1966 and received the Freedom of the City of London in 1997.


Sir Donald Sinden, he said he had worked out that, apart from "gaps before the next job started", he had only had a total of five weeks' unemployment between 1942 and 2008.


Donald Sinden was honorary president of the Garden Suburb Theatre, an amateur theatre group based in Hampstead Garden Suburb where he was resident from 1954 until 1997.


Donald Sinden received, posthumously, the Gielgud Award for Excellence in the Dramatic Arts at the Guildhall, London, during the 2014 Theatre Awards UK ceremony held on 19 October.


Donald Sinden was married to the actress Diana Mahony from 3 May 1948 until her death from stomach cancer aged 77 on 22 September 2004.


Donald Sinden died at his home in Wittersham on the Isle of Oxney, Kent, on 12 September 2014, aged 90, from prostate cancer diagnosed several years earlier.


An honorary life member and trustee of the Garrick Club in London, which he joined in 1960, Donald Sinden was cremated in a coffin painted in the club's 'salmon and cucumber' colours.