the witty and heart-warming drama


by Jeff Baron
04 April- 13 May 2005
Rex Garner

Rex Garner

Rex returned from South Africa two years ago. Most recently he has been in Alan Ayckbourn’s new play Sugar Daddies in which he played the male lead both in Scarborough and on tour. Last year he directed There Goes the Bride in Vienna.

After the war he secured a job at the Playhouse Theatre, Henley on Thames where he was spotted by a director who offered him a season at the Little Theatre in Edinburgh. Here he played in The Anatomist with Alastair Sim who later put him into Dr Angelus at the Phoenix Theatre in London. 1948 saw him in Norman Marshall’s London Gate Theatre Company, touring Germany with Hamlet and Shaw’s Man and Superman. He then joined the Arts Theatre Ipswich for two years. In 1954 he joined the Alexandra Theatre Birmingham for Derek Salberg. He left there for television when he was offered the lead in Shadow Squad. He followed that with a sit com My Wife and I with Mai Zetterling as his co star. In all, he did over 200 television shows of all types in the UK.

He went to South Africa in 1968 to join the Academy Theatre and commuted between SA and the UK for some years. During this period he played the co lead in Not Now Darling on Broadway and finally settled in South Africa in 1974 as Artistic Director for the Academy Theatre until the theatre closed in 1979. He immediately joined Pieter Toerien acting and directing plays until 1999. While with Pieter Toerien he directed and played in Move Over Mrs Markham for which he won a Vita Comedy award nomination. In 1983 he won two Fleur du Cap Awards, Best Director for Noises Off and Best Actor for Mass Appeal, making him the first person to receive both awards in the same year. He directed Clarence Darrow which won a Quarterly Vita Award for Best Production and won the Breytenbach Epathlon Best Director Award. In all Rex played and/or directed over 150 plays while in South Africa,

For television in South Africa Rex played in Molière’s The Miser for which he received the Tonight Best Actor Award and was nominated for a Artes Best Actor Award. He was nominated for a Best Actor Award in The Settlers and was the subject of Profile. In the 90’s he did four series of a sit com Going Up which topped the ratings.