Dame Edith Evans



  • (1888 - 1976) Outstanding British actress, who for over60 years enchanted audiences in the theater and the cinema both incomedy and high drama. She made her London debut in 1912, as Cressidain William Poel's production of Troilus and Cressida; her lastappearance, at the Haymarket Theatre in 1974, was in an evening entitledEdith Evans and Friends. Between these two milestones she actedin many productions of Shakespeare's plays (including two spells atthe Old Vic), a number of Restoration comedies, and a great varietyof modern works, including the first production of Shaw's HeartbreakHouse in 1921. Her performance as the haughty Lady Bracknellin Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest, has been a favouritewith two generations: she first appeared in the stage play in 1939but gave a memorable reading in Anthony Asquith's 1952 film. KennethTynan wrote of dame Edith speaking the lines in "a voice whichhad lorgnettes implicit in every dragged and devastating syllable."