Anthony Newley Biography
Anthony Newley was born on 24 September 1931. Newley was a songwriter, an English actor, and singer.
The Guinness Book of British Hit Singles & Albums described Newley as among the most innovative UK acts of the early rock years before moving into musicals and cabaret. Newley was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1989.
Anthony Newley Early Life
Newley was born in the London district of Hackney. Anthony was the son of Frances Grace Newley and George Kirby, a shipping clerk. He had five siblings, Maxene, John, Joanne, Linda, and Belinda. Antony Willis was Jewish through his maternal grandmother.
Newley’s parents, who had never married, separated during his early childhood. Anthony’s aunt and uncle brought him up through unofficial adoption. During the Second World War, he was evacuated to a foster home in the country safe from the Blitz aerial bombing attacks on London.
Although recognized as very bright by his teachers, Newly was uninterested in school. Furthermore, by the age of fourteen, Anthony was working as an office boy for an Advertising Agency in Fleet Street called Hannaford and Goodman. When he read an ad in The Daily Telegraph, headed “Boy Actors Urgently Wanted” he applied to the advertisers, the prestigious Italia Conti Stage School, only to discover that the fees were too high.
Nevertheless, after a brief audition, he was offered a job as an office boy on a salary of 30 shillings (£1.50) a week plus tuition at the school. While serving tea one afternoon he caught the eye of producer Geoffrey de Barkus, who cast Newley as “Dusty” in the children’s serial, The Adventures of Dusty Bates.
Anthony Newley Acting
Newley’s first major film roles were Dusty Bates in The Adventures Of Dusty Bates 1947. Also as Dick Bultitude in Peter Ustinov’s Vice Versa 1948. He followed by the Artful Dodger in David Lean’s Oliver Twist (1948), based on the Charles Dickens novel. Antony made a successful transition from child star to actor in British films of the 1950s. His early career broken by a spell of national service.
During the 1950s. Anthony appeared in many British radio programs, and for a time appeared as Cyril in Floggits starring Elsie and Doris Waters. However, it was probably the film Idol on Parade,1959 that most changed his career direction. In the film, he played a rock singer called up for national service. The story was somewhat inspired by Elvis Presley having recently been drafted for army service in the United States. The 1958 film No Time to Die also known as Tank Force cemented Newley’s position as a leading screen actor.
Anthony Newley Marriage Life
He has married three times. His first marriage was to Ann Lynn from 1956 to 1963 which ended in divorce. The two had a son, Simon. The child died in infancy from a congenital infirmity.
Anthony then was married to the actress Joan Collins from 1963 to 1970. The couple had two children, Tara Newley, and Sacha Alexander Newley. Tara became a broadcaster in Britain. Sacha is a renowned portrait artist based in New York City and represented by four paintings in the National Portrait Gallery in Washington.
Newley’s third wife was former air hostess Dareth Rich. The two also had two children, Shelby and Christopher. In an episode of Angela and Friends Sky One, Tara Newley also mentioned another sister, a third living daughter of Newley.
Newley’s stepfather, Ronald Gardner, wound up in Beverly Hills working as a chauffeur but soon ran off with another woman. Newley searched, with the help of a detective, for his biological father, George Kirby, and effected a reunion. Newley bought his father a house in Beverly Hills, in the hope that he would reunite with Grace, but this did not happen.
Anthony Newley Death
Newley died on 14 April 1999, in Jensen Beach, Florida. Anthony died from renal cancer at the age of 67. He had first been diagnosed with cancer in 1985, and it returned in 1997. It spread to his lungs and liver.
Anthony Newley was said to have died in the arms of his companion, the designer Gina Fratini. Anthony was survived by his five children, a granddaughter Miel, and his mother Grace, then aged 96, who has subsequently died. Since then two more grandchildren have been born: Weston (Tara’s second child) and Ava Grace (Sacha’s first, with his wife Angela Tassoni).