Roger Allam

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Roger Allam
Roger Allam La Cage 120909 DSCF1622.JPG
Roger Allam in 2009
Roger William Allam

(1953-10-26) 26 October 1953 (age 67)
Bow, London, England
Nationality British
Years active1976–present
Spouse(s) Rebecca Saire

Roger William Allam (born 26 October 1953) is an English actor, known primarily for his stage career, although he has performed in film, television and radio.


He played Inspector Javert in the original London production of the stage musical Les Misérables , First Officer Douglas Richardson in the award-winning radio series Cabin Pressure , and DI Fred Thursday in the TV series Endeavour . He is also known for his roles as Illyrio Mopatis in the HBO series Game of Thrones , Royalton in Speed Racer , Lewis Prothero in the 2005 adaptation of V for Vendetta and as Peter Mannion MP in The Thick Of It .

He has been nominated four times for the Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actor, winning twice.

Life and career

Allam was born in Bow, London, England. He was educated at Christ's Hospital and Manchester University. [1] [2] His father was rector of St Mary Woolnoth. [3]

He played Mercutio for the Royal Shakespeare Company, in 1983. [4]

From 1985 to 1986, he played Inspector Javert in the original London production of the stage musical Les Misérables.

He has also appeared in many radio dramas for the BBC. In 2001, he starred in BBC Radio 4's adaptation of Les Misérables , as Valjean. In 2000 he played Adolf Hitler at the Royal National Theatre in David Edgar's Albert Speer . He won an Olivier Award as Best Actor 2001, for his role as Captain Terri Denis in a revival of Privates on Parade , opening in December 2001 at the Donmar Warehouse, Covent Garden. In November 2002 at the Comedy Theatre he co-starred with Gillian Anderson in Michael Weller's romantic comedy What the Night Is For.

In 2003, he appeared as former West German federal chancellor Willy Brandt in Michael Frayn's play Democracy which opened at the Cottesloe Theatre, in the Royal National Theatre. He stayed with the show for its transfer to the West End. In December 2004 and January 2005, Allam appeared as the villainous Abanazar in a pantomime of Aladdin at the Old Vic theatre, co-starring Ian McKellen, Maureen Lipman and Sam Kelly. He reprised this role at the Old Vic, once again with Ian McKellen and Frances Barber in 2006–07. In August 2005, Allam appeared in Blackbird by David Harrower alongside Jodhi May at the Edinburgh Festival in a production by German star director Peter Stein. The play transferred to the Albery Theatre in London in February 2006. Blackbird subsequently won a best new play award.

In 2006 he appeared in Stephen Frears's film The Queen , starring Oscar-winner Dame Helen Mirren, as the Queen's private secretary. In February 2007, he performed in the 1960s farce Boeing-Boeing at the Comedy Theatre in the West End, co-starring Mark Rylance, Frances de la Tour and Tamzin Outhwaite. In 2007, he appeared for the first time as Peter Mannion MP in the special episodes of the BBC comedy The Thick of It . He reprised the role in the third series (2009), and returned in the final series (2012) as part of the expanded regular cast.

In 2008, Allam played the role of Max Reinhardt, the Salzburg Festival impresario in Michael Frayn's play Afterlife, the production staged by Michael Blakemore on the National Theatre's Lyttelton stage. [5] In 2009, Allam played Albin/Zaza in La Cage aux Folles at the Playhouse in London. Allam played Falstaff in Henry IV, Part 1 and Henry IV, Part 2 at Shakespeare's Globe, in the 2010 season. [6] He won the Olivier Award for Best Actor. [7] In October 2010, Allam was reunited with his former cast mates from Les Misérables in the 25th anniversary concert for a performance of "One Day More".

In January 2012, he starred in the first series of Endeavour, the prequel to the long-running Inspector Morse, playing the gruff but kind-hearted Detective Inspector Fred Thursday, young Endeavour Morse's mentor in 1960s Oxford. By 2018 Allam had portrayed his central character in five additional well-received series, which are also aired in America as part of the PBS Masterpiece Mystery! series. In March 2019, the show's sixth season had concluded on ITV, was scheduled for broadcast in the summer in the United States, and had been recommissioned for a seventh season to be set in 1970. [8]

In April 2012 he also starred as Uncle Vanya in the play by Anton Chekhov at the Chichester Festival Theatre. In 2013 he played the role of Prospero in William Shakespeare's play The Tempest at Shakespeare's Globe theatre in London [9] alongside Colin Morgan as Ariel. Allam presented Michael Frayn at the 2013 Olivier Awards with a Special Lifetime Award which was aired by ITV1. Allam has also reteamed with Stephen Frears in Tamara Drewe , the film version of Posy Simmond's popular comic strip. He plays the crime novelist Nicholas Hardiment, who is bewitched by London journalist Tamara Drewe, played by Gemma Arterton. In the closing chapter of his Timebends autobiography (1987) Arthur Miller writes of Allam: "To play the 1986 Royal Shakespeare Company production of The Archbishop's Ceiling , Roger Allam gave up the leading role as Javert in the monster hit Les Misérables because he had done it over sixty times and thought my play more challenging for him at that moment of his career. Nor did he consider his decision a particularly courageous one. This is part of what a theatre culture means and it is something few New York actors would have the sense of security even to dream of doing." [10]

Allam narrated the Channel 4 series The Auction House. [11]

In October and November 2016 Allam appeared as Brigadier Adrian Stone in the BBC series The Missing . [12]

Personal life

Allam is married to actress Rebecca Saire, with whom he has two sons, William, an actor, and Thomas. [13] He, Rebecca and William appeared together in the Endeavour episode Raga (series 7, episode 2, broadcast February 2020). In that episode, Rebecca and William played mother and son. [14] [15]

He identifies as being on the political left, and has also publicly castigated Donald Trump. [16] [17]



1976 Vinegar Tom Doctor/Man/Bellringer/PackerHumberside Theatre, Hull
1979Mary BarnesLecturer/Angie's brother Royal Court Theatre
1981Twin RivalsSubtleman/Richmore
1981 Two Gentlemen of Verona Outlaw
1981 Titus Andronicus Demetrius
1981, 1983 All's Well That Ends Well Morgan Royal Shakespeare Theatre (1981) Martin Beck Theatre (1983)
1982 Our Friends in the North Conrad
1983 The Charge of the Light Brigade (RSC Festival)Terence Gawain Hackett
1983Typhoid Mary (RSC Festival)Dr Soper
1984 Romeo and Juliet MercutioRoyal Shakespeare Theatre
1984 A Midsummer Night's Dream Theseus/Oberon
1984 Richard III ClarenceRoyal Shakespeare Theatre
1984TodayVictor Ellison
1984The PartyFord
1985The Dream PlayThe Officer
1985–1986 Les Misérables Javert Barbican Theatre (1985) Palace Theatre (1986)
1986The Archbishop's CeilingAdrian
1987Measure for MeasureThe Duke Vincentio
1987 Twelfth Night Sir Toby Belch
1987 Julius Caesar Brutus
1989 The Fairy Queen Oberon Aix-en-Provence Festival
1990 The Seagull Trigorin
1990 Much Ado About Nothing Benedick
1991 Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Jekyll
1992Madras HousePhilip Madras Lyric Hammersmith
1992Una PookaAngelo Tricycle Theatre
1993 City of Angels Stone Prince of Wales Theatre
1994ArcadiaBernard Nightingale Theatre Royal Haymarket
1995 The Importance of Being Earnest Jack Worthing Old Vic Theatre
1995The Way of the WorldMirabell National Theatre
1997–1998ARTSerge(1997) Marc(1998) Wyndham's Theatre
1996 Macbeth Macbeth
1996The Learned LadiesTrissotin
1999SummerfolkBassovNational Theatre
1999MoneyHenry GravesNational Theatre
1999Troilus and CressidaUlyssesNational Theatre
2000 The Cherry Orchard LopakhinNational Theatre
2000Albert Speer Adolf Hitler National Theatre
2001Privates on ParadeTerri Dennis Donmar Warehouse
2002What The Night Is ForAdam Penzius Comedy Theatre
2003The Woman in WhitePerformer Sydmonton Festival
2003DemocracyWilly BrandtNational Theatre
2004, 2005 Aladdin AbbanazarThe Old Vic
2006BlackbirdRay Albery Theatre
2006PravdaLambert Le RouxChichester Festival Theatre, Birmingham Repertory Theatre
2007Boeing, BoeingBernardComedy Theatre
2007The Giant Leonardo da Vinci Hampstead Theatre
2008AfterlifeMax ReinhardtNational Theatre
2009La Cage Aux FollesAlbin/Zaza Playhouse Theatre
2009God of Carnage (UK Tour)Michel Vallon
2010Henry IV Parts 1 & 2Falstaff Shakespeare's Globe
2013The TempestProspero Shakespeare's Globe
2014SeminarLeonard Hampstead Theatre
2015 The Moderate Soprano John Christie Hampstead Theatre
2017 Limehouse Roy Jenkins Donmar Warehouse
2019 Rutherford and Son John Rutherford, Sr Royal National Theatre [19]
2020 A Number Salter Bridge Theatre [20]



1989 Wilt Dave
2005 A Cock and Bull Story Adrian
2006 V for Vendetta Lewis Prothero
The Wind That Shakes the Barley Sir John Hamilton
The Queen Robin Janvrin
2008 Speed Racer E.P. Arnold Royalton
Inkheart NarratorVoice
2010 Tamara Drewe Nicholas Hardiment
2011 Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides Henry Pelham
The Iron Lady Gordon Reece
2012 The Woman in Black Mr. Bentley
The Angels' Share Thaddeus
2013 The Book Thief Narrator/Death Voice
2015 Mr. Holmes Dr. Barrie
A Royal Night Out Stan
The Lady in the Van Rufus
2016 The Truth Commissioner Henry Stanfield
2017 The Hippopotamus Ted Wallace
2020Laal Singh ChaddhaRaja


1989Ending UpDr. MainwaringTV film
The Fairy QueenOberon
1990The Investigation: Inside a Terrorist Bombing Charles Tremayne
1992 Shakespeare: The Animated Tales Duke Orsino/NarratorVoice
TV mini-series
Episodes: "The Winter's Tale" & "Twelfth Night"
1994 Screen Two Stephen SummerchildTV series
Episode: "A Landing on the Sun"
1997 Inspector Morse Denis CornfordTV series
Episode: "Death Is Now My Neighbour"
1998 Heartbeat Graham HayesTV series
Episode: "Echoes of the Past"
Midsomer Murders Alan HollingsworthTV series
Episode: "Faithful unto Death"
1998–2000The CreativesCharlie BaxterTV series
1999 RKO 281 Walt Disney TV film
2002 Foyle's War Alastair GraemeTV series
Episode: "Eagle Day"
Waking the Dead Benjamin GoldTV series
Episode: "Thin Air"
2003 The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone ChristopherTV film
2005 The Inspector Lynley Mysteries Simon FeatherstonehaughTV series
Episode: "The Seed of Cunning"
2005 to present Muffin The Mule Narrator Audiobooks only
2006 Spooks Paul MillingtonTV series
2007–2012 The Thick of It Peter MannionTV series
2008 The Curse of Steptoe Tom SloaneTV film
2009 The Old Guys NedTV series
Episode: "The Therapist"
Margaret John Wakeham TV film
Kröd Mändoon and the Flaming Sword of Fire General ArcadiusTV series
Ashes to Ashes DSI Mackintosh
2011 Game of Thrones Magister Illyrio MopatisTV series; Episodes: "Winter is Coming" & "The Wolf and the Lion"
2012 Parade's End General CampionTV series
2012–present Endeavour DI Fred Thursday
2013 The Politician's Husband Marcus Brock
2013-2016 Sarah & Duck Narrator
2014 Bad Education Maurice Hewston
2016 The Missing Adrian Stone
Ethel & Ernest Middle Aged DoctorVoice
TV film


1992 Les Liaisons Dangereuses Valmont BBC Radio 4 adaptation
1992 The King's General Sir Richard Grenvile. [21] BBC Radio 4 adaptation
1997The Man in the Elephant MaskJoseph Merrick. [22] BBC Radio 4 two-parter
2008 The Ring and the Book Guido Franceschini [23] BBC Radio 4 adaptation
2008 Will Smith's Midlife Crisis ManagementWill's godfather, Peter [24] BBC Radio 4 series
2008-2014 Cabin Pressure First Officer Douglas Richardson. [25] Four series on BBC Radio 4, and two specials
2010Mark Lawson - What do you know?DCI Parsons [26] BBC Radio 4 drama
2010-presentHow Does That Make You Feel?Richard Fallon MP [27] Ten series, BBC Radio 4 comedy
2011The Magnificent AndreaBarry [28] BBC Radio 4 comedy drama
2012Blithe SpiritCharles [29] BBC Radio 4 comedy
2014Edmund Gosse - Father and SonPhilip Henry Gosse [30] BBC Radio 4 drama
2014-2015 War and Peace General Mikhail Kutuzov [31] BBC Radio 4 adaptation, episode aired on New Years Day 2015
2018-presentConversations from a Long MarriageRoger [32] BBC Radio 4 comedy


Allam has narrated several audiobooks, including Solar by Ian McEwan.

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  30. BBC or empty |title= (help)
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