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Issue Details: First known date: 2016... 2016 Henry Szeps : ‘It’s My Party’ – Acting For Life
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'Actor and writer Henri Szeps speaks three languages fluently. He was born in a refugee camp in Switzerland during the Second World War. His parents had fled Poland in fear of the invading Germans in 1938, and he lived in two countries before arriving in Australia at the age of eight. He already spoke Swiss German, French and Yiddish. The young Henri discovered acting at Greenwich primary school in Sydney and taught himself tumbling on a grassy slope in the park at Lavender Bay. As a teenager he found a gymnastics teacher called George Sparkes who taught him to do back flips and had a profound impact on his life. It was this man, Sparksey, who eventually helped Henri to put together a club act. Szeps studied science and engineering at university and also took acting classes with Hayes Gordon at his boatshed theatre in North Sydney. In 1963 Gordon cast Szeps in a play by Durrenmatt called The Physicists, and he has performed at the Ensemble Theatre regularly ever since. Szeps recalls that Hayes Gordon advised his young student actors to do ‘vaudeville, variety, stand up comedy’. Szeps took his teacher’s advice, worked the clubs, and went on to become one of the most well-known comic rogue characters on Australian television, playing the selfish older son in the landmark series Mother and Son that ran from 1984-1994.' (Introduction)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

  • Appears in:
    y separately published work icon Players : Australian Actors on Stage, Television and Film Anne Pender , St Lucia : AustLit: The Australian Literature Resource , 2016 10628863 2016 selected work biography

    'The Australian theatre, television and film industries are dynamic and creative in ways that could never have been imagined half a century ago. Since the 1950s these industries have expanded and demonstrated extraordinary vitality. Our vibrant Australian performing arts industry would not exist in its current form without the creative contribution of actors. Actors are the public face of the performing arts, carrying the immediate responsibility for the success of each show. Yet they are sometimes left out of theatre history. It is the actors, and often the characters they play, that we remember when we recall a favourite television program, film or play, long after we have seen it. It is the actors who make a play or a television program credible, enjoyable and memorable. The aim of the essays in this series is to document and interpret the specific contributions of actors who have worked in Australia for most of their lives, in order to understand their artistry and their world. The actors profiled in these pages came to maturity in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s. They have shaped our ideas and our identity.' (Introduction)

    St Lucia : AustLit: The Australian Literature Resource , 2016
Last amended 16 Jan 2017 14:34:24
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