Episode 44: An Ian McKellen Tribute

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Ian Mckellen is a legend of stage and cinema. He has incredibly starred in over four hundred plays and films and he is that rare character actor that awes in each and every performance. McKellen is a celebrity of such distinguished political and social service that it has transcended his international fame to reach beyond the stage and screen. The breadth of his career — professional, personal and political — has been truly staggering. Sci-fi and fantasy fans know him as Gandolf from the Lord of The Rings and Magneto from the Marvel X-Men series of films. Theater lovers know of McKellen’s roles as Macbeth, King Lear, and Estragon in the truly fantastic Waiting For Godot. From his West End acting debut in 1964 in James Saunders’s A Scent of Flowers, to the day he took Broadway by storm when he played Antonio Salieri in Peter Shaffer’s Tony-Award-winning play Amadeus, to his many turns on screen, McKellen is an international treasure and icon, and it is because of this that Welcome To The Party Pal pays tribute to such an acclaimed talent.

To celebrate Ian McKellen properly, one of your Welcome To The Party Pal hosts, Michael Shields, sits down with author Garry O’Connor, who recently penned Ian McKellen: A Biography. Garry O’ Connor is a biographer and novelist, noted for his publications on theatrical and literary figures. He has written well-praised biographies of Laurence Olivier, Ralph Richardson, Paul Scofield, Peggy Ashcroft, and Alec Guinness. His book probes the heart of Ian McKellen, recreating his greatest stage roles and exploring his personal life. Ian McKellen: A Biography shows readers what makes the great actor tick and Michael and Garry discuss some of Ian’s more memorable roles, what motivates Ian in work and life, his activism, and so much more.

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