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theatre appearances

George Irving was a founder member of the South Shields Youth theatre in 1966, and a director from 1968 - 69.

He worked at the National Youth Theatre from 1966 - 73, and attended Birmingham University Drama department , graduating in July 1973, with B.A.Hons in Drama.

He has appeared in repertory in Newcastle, Exeter, Birmingham and Leicester, and a season at the Open Space.

year play role author venue other cast members   review
  Endgame Hamm Beckett        
  The Way of the World Mr. Fainall Congreve Birmingham Fidelis Morgan George Irving as Mr Fainall  
  Henry V French King Shakespeare National Youth Theatre      
  Julius Caesar Caesar Shakespeare National Youth Theatre      
  Zigger Zagger Les Terson National Youth Theatre      
  A Midsummer's Night's Dream Bottom Shakespeare National Youth Theatre      
  Geordie's March George Terson National Youth Theatre (Shaw theatre) Tony Conaboy    
  In camera   Sartre Birmingham Fidelis Morgan George Irving  
1970 Macbeth Macbeth Shakespeare

National Youth Theatre,
Sunderland Empire

  George was also assistant director.  
1972 Measure for Measure Pompey Shakespeare

National Youth Theatre,
Shaw Theatre

Francis Matthews, Dominic Jephcott    

Byker Byker

  Phil Woods University Theatre Newcastle

Fred Pearson

The Tyneside Theatre Company  
1974 Rock Nativity  John, 2nd shepherd  Wood University Theatre Newcastle

Frances Tomelty

Sting's band, Last Exit, supplied the music.

George Irving “… inspired moments of rejoicing.” Newcastle Journal

Cyrano de Bergerac



University Theatre Newcastle      


Horse Shaffer University Theatre Newcastle Dicken Ashworth    
1975 The Devils Father Urbain Grandier Whiting University Theatre Newcastle Bruce Alexander    
  Artaud at Roudez Louis Jouvet Marowitz Open Space Theatre and Rome      
1977 Othello Iago Shakespeare Northcott Theatre Exeter, and tour Geraldine James 'Iago, played by George Irving, is pure 20th century treachery. As cunning and plausible as today's con man, he offers a friendly word in the ear while slipping the knife of doubt neatly between the shoulder blades.'
  The Professional Teya Dusan Kovacevic Offstage theatre      
1979 Hearing  Dan Page Birmingham rep      
1980 Hedda Gabler Lorborg Ibsen Haymarket Theatre Leicester      
  The Bedbug Ivan Prisypkin Mayakovsky Gate Theatre Fiona Gaunt    
1980 If Winter Comes Oswath  

Bush theatre

Leicester Haymarket

  Mrs Vershinin Alexander Vershinin Cooper Glasgow and Hamburg      
1980 Commitments Will Hughes

Bush theatre and BBC television broadcast.

Alan Rickman George Irving as Will  
1982 The Miss Firecracker Contest Mac Sam Henley Bush theatre      
1982 Destry rides again Kent Gershe Donmar warehouse Jill Gascoine, Alfred Molina George Irving as Kent  
1983 Shona Harry Craze Soho Poly      
1985 The Woolgatherer Cliff Mastrosimone Lyric Studio Hammersmith Kate Lock    
1985 Rumblings Neil Gater Gibbs Bush Theatre Belinda Lang abundance of expert close-contact comic acting
1986 Twelfth Night Orsino Shakespeare Leicester Haymarket Sylvester McCoy    
1986 The Miss Firecracker Contest Mac Sam Henley Greenwich Theatre Gayle Hunnicutt
Sandra Dickinson
1988 A Tale of Two Cities

Dr Manette

Marquis de St Evremande

Dickens/Mitchell Theatre Royal, Bath Philip Middlemiss  
1989 Poor Beast in the rain Danger Doyle Roche

Bush theatre

and BBC radio broadcast.

Catherine Cusack   Any trivial reservations about Poor Beast (its archetypal dramatic curve, climaxing in a drunken exchange of home truths, smacks of the "difficult second play" syndrome) evaporate in the context of the trilogy as a whole, which is simply the fringe theatre event of the year and then some.
1989 On the verge

The Gorge Troll, The Yeti,
Madame Nhu,
Mr Coffee,
Nicky Paradise



Lilian Baylis Theatre,

Sadlers Wells

Paola Dionisotti , Juliet Stevenson. George Irving ...joined by the extraordinarily versatile George Irving, playing a variety of roles from the Yeti to a 50s dreamboat.
1991 The Second Mrs Tanqueray Aubrey Tanqueray Pinero Salisbury Playhouse Michael Sheldon, Daniel Tobias. George Irving 'George Irving's slightly deadpan delivery sounds dull at first, but then becomes an integral part of the character of Tanqueray, making all the more moving his final anguished breakdown'
1991 The Winters Tale

Old shepherd

Shakespeare Salisbury Playhouse Richard Howard    
1992 White woman street Blakely Barry Bush theatre and Abbey theatre David Yip    
1992 Walpurgis night Prokorov Erofeyev Gate theatre Nicholas Farrell George Irving as Prokorov "Dalia Ibelhauptaite deploys a high calibre cast to present a stark, gripping production, pack with harrowing truths and fierce intelligence.... the production is flawless."
1994 Hamlet Claudius Shakespeare Old Rep Birmingham Russell Boulter, Celia Montague    
1996 The Last Yankee Leroy Hamilton Miller Colchester Mercury Cheryl Campbell, Peter Laird, Heather Canning   'a splendid production,' (The Times) 'George Irving is much more reticent.. he is imbued with a terse defensiveness... often making crucial points with his eyes glancing off to eight o'clock of his interlocutor's face. '
1996 Hamlet Claudius Shakespeare Greenwich Theatre Michael Maloney, Dinah Stabb George Irving

'George Irving's quiet, reptilian Claudius seems unrelaxed at first, but soon gains authority: his account of the king at bay is harrowing.'

Sunday Times

2006 The French Lieutenant's Woman The Writer John Fowles, adapted by Mark Healy Yvonne Arnaud theatre and tour Anthony Howell, Katy Odey George Irving in The French Lieutenant's Woman


'an actor as smooth and strong as a well-aged single malt whisky, dominates the stage and effortlessly moves from role to role with total command'

George Irving has such stage presence that, had he been centre stage more often, he would have detracted attention away from the rest of the impressive cast who were doing their best to tell his tale.

Read more here

2007 Shining City John Conor McPherson Octagon, Bolton Paul McCleary George Irving as John

'But the key to the success of this production is an extraordinary performance from George Irving as John, who seeks counselling about the ghostly visitations of his dead wife. His spell-binding confession of his personal experiences leads the audience through his own despair and repair. It is a charismatic performance.'

Read an interview here

and reviews here , here, here, here, and here

2008 The Dying of Today The Barber Howard Barker  Arcola Theatre  Duncan Bell George Irving as The Barber

George Irving as the barber is also outstanding - he has authority, pathos, such a powerful face and looks every inch the tragic Greek.

Read reviews here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.

Destry Rides Again
The Second Mrs Tanqueray
On the Edge
Thanks to Peps, Barbara and Claire, and many of the theatres listed here, for their help.
The last Yankee
The Winter's Tale
Walpurgis Night
The Miss Firecracker Contest
The Devils
The Miss Firecracker contest
white woman street programme
Shona script
The French Lieutenant's woman programme
shining city programme
miss firecracker
the dying of today
Byker Byker programme
Rock Nativity Geordie's March The Bedbug Rumblings Hamlet