Imelda Staunton 1.9.13 Thought of the Day

“…It was the best job of my life. It’s rather like falling out of an aeroplane with no parachute.”
–Imelda Staunton


Imelda (Photo credit: Lizzie Wells)

Imelda Mary Philomena Bernadette Staunton was born on this day in London, England, in 1956. She is 57 years old.

Staunton, an only child, lived with her mum and dad over her mother’s hair dressing salon. Her mother was also a gifted natural musician who could pick up  songs by ear (but couldn’t read music.) She passed on her love of music to Staunton who attended La Sainte Union Convent Catholic school. After graduation she attended the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts.

Staunton wasted no time launching her career following graduation, becoming associated with such prestigious venues as The Old Vic and the National Theatre. [Moviefone: Imelda Staunton Biography.]

Musical theatre and Shakespeare fill her Stage CV. She won the prestigious Olivier Award twice.

On film she landed a role in the ensemble movie Peter’s Friends with Kenneth Branagh, Stephen Fry, Emma Thompson and Hugh Laurie. She worked with Branagh and Thompson again in Much Ado About Nothing. Then paired up with Laurie as Mr. and Mrs. Jennings in Thompson’s wonderful adaption of Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility in 1995. (Thompson both wrote the screen play and starred in the film). She was Maria in Twelfth Night and the nurse in Shakespeare in Love.

As Staunton’s numerous stage roles continued to earn her critical success, frequent television and film roles made her a familiar and endearing face to the general public. [Ibid]

She stepped away from the crowd with a starring dramatic role in Vera Drake.

Her undeniably affecting portrayal of the title role — a selfless housewife and cleaning woman who makes a name for herself performing illegal abortions — earned her near-universal praise. After earning accolades from both The Venice Film Festival and The New York Film Festival as well as the Los Angeles and Chicago film critic associations, Staunton had undeniably arrived when the role earned her a Best Actress nomination for the 77th Annual Academy Awards. [Ibid]

She took home a BAFTA for Vera.

Français : Avant-Première Mondiale d'Harry Pot...

Français : Avant-Première Mondiale d’Harry Potter et les Reliques de la Mort, à Londres, le 7 Juillet 2011 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In 2007 she, like many other classically trained British actors, found a new audience when she took a role in a Harry Potter film. Staunton played the nasty Defense Against the Dark Arts Professor in a fluffy pink cardigan, Dolores Umbridge in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.

Some Ministry officials in Harry Potter and th...

Some Ministry officials in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, from left to right: John Dawlish, auror; Dolores Umbridge, Senior Undersecretary to the Minister; Cornelius Fudge, Minister for Magic; and Kingsley Shacklebolt, auror. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

She laced up a corset again for her supporting role as Miss Octavia Pole in the BBC’s delightful adaptation of Elizabeth Gaskell’s Cranford (and again for Return to Cranford).

Julia Mackenzie and Imelda Staunton

Julia Mackenzie and Imelda Staunton (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Staunton has lent her voice to a number of acting projects including and animated version of the Wind in the Willows, The Adventures of Mole, The Adventures of Toad, The Ugly Duckling, and Chicken Run. She’s even did a turn as the voice of Interface on Dr. Who.



About ritalovestowrite

Freelance writer, graphic designer, musician, foodie and Jane Austen enthusiast in Northern Baltimore County, Maryland. As a writer I enjoy both fiction and non fiction (food, travel and local interest stories.) As an advocate for the ARTS, one of my biggest passions is helping young people find a voice in all the performing arts. To that end it has been my honor to give one-on-one lessons to elementary, middle and high school students in graphic design and music. And as JANE-O I currently serve as the regional coordinator for JASNA Maryland and am working on a Regency/Federal cooking project. View all posts by ritalovestowrite

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