Christopher Scoular was a versatile and charming actor who appeared in numerous stage, screen and radio productions in a long-standing career in which he travelled the world promoting the best of English theatre.
His early theatrical leanings began, no doubt, after his father made him a toy theatre. Later, while a pupil at Dulwich College, and as a member of the student company The Rafter Players – which also included Neil Mundy, Roger Sherman and Simon Brett – he played such varied parts as the King of France, Friar Lawrence, Malvolio and memorably, Prospero in a film of The Tempest made in Cornwall.
After he graduated from drama school his repertory experience included work at Coventry, Cardiff, Hornchurch, Leatherhead, Worthing’s Connaught Theatre (playing a memorable Hamlet and King Lear) , The Mill at Sonning and the Open-Air Theatre in Regent’s Park. He also appeared in many productions at the Theatre Royal, Windsor and Guildford’s Yvonne Arnaud Theatre. His two years at the Bristol Old Vic culminated in the role of WS Gilbert in Tarantara! Tarantara! which transferred to the Westminster Theatre in 1975.
Scoular’s fine baritone voice was used to good effect when he played Tony in West Side Story at the Belgrade Theatre, Coventry in 1970 and in the original cast of the hit musical Godspell in 1971 at London’s Roundhouse, taking over as understudy from Jeremy Irons. He later also deployed his natural comic timing in Ray Cooney’s Run for Your Wife and Move Over Mrs Markham. His last stage appearance was in Roland Schimmelpfennig’s The Golden Dragon at the Drayton Arms Theatre earlier this year, when his health started to fail.
He worked in Sweden, Denmark and Canada, also touring the Middle and Far East in My Fat Friend with John Inman, while his film credits include An American Werewolf in London (1981). On television he was greatly inspired by Sir John Gielgud after playing alongside him in Agatha Christie’s The Seven Dials Mystery (1981). He was in the serials The Dark Side of the Sun (1983) and Maelstrom (1985) and played Reggie in the adaptations of John Buchan’s Hannay stories (1988-89). Other TV credits include Love in a Cold Climate, Casualty, Crossroads, The Bill and EastEnders. His humorous touch was particularly evident alongside Maureen Lipman and Anne Reid in Ladies of Letters (2009-10).
He appeared in more than 50 productions for BBC Radio, often working with his old schoolfriend Simon Brett in providing funny voices for Week Ending. He often remarked that had he not been an actor he would have ended up as a photographer, and his albums of Norfolk and France were creative and accomplished. As an actor he left his mark as a gentleman of grace and style.
Christopher Geoffrey Scoular, actor: born Arbroath 9 March 1945; married 1988 Gillian Bryson (three daughters); died Norwich 29 October 2014.Reuse content