Cole on set filming Series 4 of Doc Martin in Port Isaac, June 2009
|Born||Patricia Stephanie Cole
5 October 1941
Solihull, Warwickshire, England, UK
|Spouse(s)||Henry Marshall (m. 1973–1986, divorced) 1 child
Peter Birrel (m. 1998–2004, his death)
Stephanie Cole, OBE (born Patricia Stephanie Cole; October 1941)1 is an English stage, television, radio and film actress, best known for high-profile television roles in shows such as Tenko, Open All Hours, Waiting for God, Keeping Mum, Doc Martin and, since 2011, as Sylvia Goodwin in ITV soap opera Coronation Street.
Born in Solihull, Warwickshire. She trained at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School from 1958 to 1960 and went on to consolidate her acting skills in repertory theatres around the United Kingdom. She made her stage debut at the age of seventeen playing the eccentric, elderly medium Madame Arcati in Noel Coward's Blithe Spirit. At the age of 63 she returned to the same role when the play was revived at the West End's Savoy Theatre in 2004.
One of her most recognised and popular roles was of Dr Beatrice Mason in the 1980s television series Tenko, a drama which chronicled the lives of British women in Singapore after the Japanese invasion and their consequent confinement in a Japanese prisoner of war camp. The series was explicit in its portrayal of the horrific conditions and brutality faced by the women during their imprisonment, and dealt with issues such as rape, stillbirth, lesbianism, suicide, abortion and euthanasia. Cole played the role of the stern, officious yet kindly doctor over three series and a one-off special between 1981 and 1985.
During this same period Cole also played the elderly, paranoid and morose customer Mrs Delphine Featherstone (nicknamed "The Black Widow") in the BBC comedy Open All Hours. Mrs Featherstone was the only rival to Nurse Gladys Emmanuel for the affections of shopkeeper Arkwright, played by Ronnie Barker, although she was attracted to him only because she liked his stingy ways. Arkwright was scared of her advances and often hid when he saw her approaching the shop. Cole was actually only n her early forties when she took the role; playing characters much older than she actually is (notably in Waiting for God) has become a hallmark of her career.
In 1988 Cole joined actors including Thora Hird, Maggie Smith, Julie Walters and Patricia Routledge in the award-winning first series of Talking Heads, a series of dramatic monologues written for BBC Television by British playwright Alan Bennett. Cole performed the role of Muriel to great acclaim during the half-hour monologue "Soldiering On". In later years Cole would repeat her performance of this now famous monologue on both the London stage and for BBC Radio.
Another of Cole's famous roles was of the bad-tempered retired photojournalist Diana Trent in the sitcom Waiting for God which ran from 1990 to 1994. Although Diana was supposed to be a pensioner, Cole was actually 48 years old when she took the role, for which she received the 1992 Best TV Comedy Actress award at the British Comedy Awards.
From 2004 to 2009 Cole starred alongside Martin Clunes and Caroline Catz in the ITV comedy-drama, Doc Martin, playing Joan Norton, aunt of Clunes's character Dr Martin Ellingham. In 2006 Cole starred alongside Victoria Wood in the BAFTA award winning World War II drama Housewife, 49 as Mrs Waite, the local head of the WRVS. Cole also had a small role in the 2008 romantic comedy Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day, as Miss Pettigrew's grumpy boss, Miss Holt.
She has also recently appeared in the BBC Radio 4 comedy, Ed Reardon's Week as Olive, a student in Ed's writing class. Other work for BBC Radio 4 includes the role of Carolyn Knapp-Shappey, alongside Benedict Cumberbatch and Roger Allam in the successful airline sitcom Cabin Pressure.2
In August 2012 Cole departed Coronation Street but returned to the show in 2013. That same month she was confirmed among the cast for an adaptation of the 1938 thriller film The Lady Vanishes by the BBC.3
Cole has also performed as a stage actress for more than fifty years. On the West End stage she has featured in Noises Off in 1983 (Savoy Theatre), Steel Magnolias in 1989 (Lyric Theatre) and Quartet in 1999 (Albery Theatre). Her most prominent stage role was as Betty in the hit comedy A Passionate Woman written by Kay Mellor. The play, directed by Ned Sherrin, opened at the Comedy Theatre in 1994 and had a nine month extended run. On the West End's production's last curtain call, Cole was made the subject of This Is Your Life.In 2003 and 2004 she starred as Penelope Keeling in Terence Brady and Charlotte Bingham's adaptation of Rosamunde Pilcher's novel The Shell Seekers.
In 1998, Cole's career in comedy was commemorated in the BBC documentary series Funny Women.4 In the same year, Cole's autobiography A Passionate Life was published. The book's foreword was written by British theatre director Ned Sherrin.
Cole was awarded an honorary Masters of Arts degree from the University of Bristol in 2002.5 In 2005, she was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in the Queen's Birthday Honours List for her services to drama, the elderly and mental health charities.
Cole was voted Solihull's favourite Silhillian in a competition run by Solihull Council in December 2006. She beat Lucy Davis, Martin Johnson and Richard Hammond to pick up the top crown in The S Factor.6
Cole married fight director Henry Marshall in 1973. Marshall was one of the founders of the British Academy of Dramatic Combat and was a Master at Arms at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.7 They have a daughter Emma (born 1973). They divorced in 1986.
In 1998 Cole married fellow actor Peter Birrel after meeting him again by chance, thirty years after they first appeared together in a production of Richard II at the Bristol Old Vic. She remained his wife until his death from cancer in 2004.
|1978||Lillie||Agnes Langtry||Episode title: America!|
|1981 to 1985||Tenko||Dr. Beatrice Mason|
|1982 to 1985||Open All Hours||Mrs. Delphine Featherstone|
|1988||Talking Heads||Muriel||Episode title: Soldiering On|
|1989||A Bit of a Do||Betty Sillitoe|
|1990 to 1994||Waiting for God||Diana Trent|
|1997 to 1998||Keeping Mum||Mrs. Bear|
|2001||Life As We Know It||Lizzie Cameron|
|2004 to 2009||Doc Martin||Joan Norton|
|2011 -||Coronation Street||Sylvia Goodwin||9|
- 1992 British Comedy Awards - Best TV Comedy Actress for Waiting for God
- 2012 British Soap Awards - Best Comedy Performance for Coronation Street10
- Reynolds, Leda (2008-05-16). "Actress Stephanie Cole returns to hometown of Solihull". Birmingham Mail. Retrieved 2009-06-25.
- Stephanie Cole at the Internet Movie Database
- Stephanie Cole archive at the University of Bristol Theatre Collection, University of Bristol
Content from Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia
What Is This Site? The Ultimate Study Guide is a mirror of English Wikipedia. It exists in order to provide Wikipedia content to those who are unable to access the main Wikipedia site due to draconian government, employer, or school restrictions. The site displays all the text content from Wikipedia. Our sponsors generously cover part of the cost of hosting this site, and their ads are shown as part of this agreement. We regret that we are unable to display certain controversial images on some pages the site at the request of the sponsors. If you need to see images which we are unable to show, we encourage you to view Wikipedia directly if possible, and apologize for this inconvenience.
A product of XPR Content Systems. 47 Union St #9K, Grand Falls-Windsor NL A2A 2C9 CANADA