ACCIDENTALLY ON PURPOSE by Michael York

ACCIDENTALLY ON PURPOSE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

 Autobiography of the actor, his first book (published in Britain as Travelling Player). Though ever striving for variety in his roles, York is best known in the States as a leading man and, as is Cabaret, as the passive support for other characters. In England, he has played Romeo, Hamlet, and Cyrano, and since then has made his belated but well-received Broadway debut in Tennessee Williams's two-character play Out Cry. Born in 1942 in the village of Fulmer, he was the son of a serving RAF officer, and later businessman, whose wife was six years older. He showed an early gift for acting, which was fed by the Oxford University Dramatic Society and developed professionally in the Dundee Repertory, then seen to flower modestly in Olivier's National Theatre. York made an early transition to film, first appearing in Zeffirelli's The Taming of the Shrew, Harold Pinter- Joseph Losey's Accident, a 13-part BBC-TV version of The Forsyte Saga, and again with Zeffirelli in his gloriously mounted Romeo and Juliet as fiery young Tybalt. York married young, to Pat McCallum, an American photographer, honeymooned in India while serving in his first Merchant-Ivory production. After George Cukor's failure Justine, in which he played Durrell's narrator Darley, his film career crested in Bob Fosse's Cabaret, which was followed by spirited work in Richard Lester's Musketeer films and Marty Feldman's The Last Remake of Beau Geste. But what can be said of such duds as the musical remake of Lost Horizon? Perhaps York's most recent success was with Michael Gambon in the BBC-TV version of Elizabeth Bowen's The Heat of the Day, with its Pinter script. York writes at leisurely length (like Cottrell on Olivier), is always affable, warm-spirited, evenhanded, seldom memorable, and never brilliant.

Pub Date: March 1st, 1992
ISBN: 0-671-68940-1
Page count: 416pp
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15th, 1992




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