Gielgoodies! The Wit and Wisdom (& Gaffes) of John Gielgud


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Gielgoodies! The Wit and Wisdom (& Gaffes) of John Gielgud

by Jonathan Croall
Binding: PaperBack | Page extent: 120

ISBN: 9781783190072

‘A glorious compendium of John’s scintillating irreverences and fabulous faux pas... He was one of the greatest of all theatrical personalities, and these utterly characteristic throwaway squibs bring him vividly back to life.’ Simon Callow

'What a lovely idea, and such fun to dip into.... a wonderful theatrical stocking filler for Christmas.' Dame Eileen Atkins

'Truly delightful Gielgud stories. Laugh out loud and glorious!' Derek Jacobi 

This delicious feast of ‘Gielgoodies’, compiled by Gielgud’s biographer, reveals a less well‐known side to this celebrated man of the theatre: his lightning wit, his love of scandal and gossip, his wicked delight in putting down his fellow‐artists, his relish of bawdy humour. Full of startling new material, drawn from many unpublished letters and Jonathan Croall’s extensive interviews, the book also celebrates the man who dropped a thousand bricks. Gielgud’s excruciating gaffes were legendary, and here are both the famous and the unknown, collected in all their glory. Whether committed backstage, in the wings or in rehearsals, on film sets or in television studios, they bring this merry and much‐loved man vividly to life.

Hear Jonathan Croall talking to TheatreVOICE about John Gielgud


Shortlisted by The Sunday Times in the best humour books of the year

One of The Stage's Books of 2012

‘Gielgud was indiscreet even by the exacting standards of the acting profession…  I could hear Sir John’s voice as I read which lent extra poignancy to some of his observations’ The Sunday Times

'A glorious celebration of the idiosyncratic but wholly endearing warmth of a unique figure' The Stage

'This is a slim, patrician and elegant little volume…  filled with the most amusing series of gaffes and inappropriate comments...  this book is very funny and can lead to some embarrassment when read in public places... most amusing’ British Theatre Guide

'Shows Gielgud's absolutely genuine innocence, sweetness and honesty... highly recommended for anyone who enjoys a giggle, particularly when laced with a good swig of theatre history.' Harriet Devine, Blue Pages

''Buy this jolly little book by all means but be careful about reading it in public. I was sitting in a silent train carriage with people asleep...My loud guffaw shocked my fellow passengers. It is a collection of John Gielgud's wit, concious, unconcious and subconcious, and it ranges from the wicked to surreal.' Drumbeat

Other Titles by Author

Peter Hall's Bacchai Jonathan Croall

ISBN: 9781840028171


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