John (Clifford) Mortimer

Definition

Theater

  • (1923 - 2009) British playwright, novelist, andbarrister, whose works often drew on his legal career. He isbest known to the general public for his television series Rumpoleof the Bailey.

    Mortimer's first one-act plays, The Dock Brief andWhat Shall We Tell Caroline?, were produced in 1957 as a doublebill. His first full-length drama, The Wrong Side of the Park,opened four years later at the Cambridge Theatre. The moving autobiographicalplay A Voyage Round My Father was first produced in 1971 atthe Greenwich Theatre with Sir Alec Guinness in the lead; a latertelevision production starred Sir Laurence Olivier in the role ofMortimer's blind father.

    Mortimer also adapted several farces by the French playwrightGeorges Feydeau; these include A Flea in Her Ear (1965)produced by the National Theatre Company at the Old Vic, Cat Amongthe Pigeons (1969), and A Little Hotel on the Side (1984).

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