An actor best known for his voice work, Bradley Lavelle died in London’s Leicester Square on March 22 of a heart attack, just six days short of his 49th birthday. Whether in commercials, which included Domino’s Pizza, Chrysler and Pepsi Slam, in innumerable trailers, which this year already included Happy Feet, Borat and The Number 23, or narrations for the Discovery Network, Jack Kerouac on The South Bank Show and many others, his voice was immensely flexible, rich in character and also in demand for computer games and radio drama. He was a notable Lion in The Wizard of Oz.
Brad was born in Toronto on March 31, 1958, and trained at Bristol Old Vic Theatre School where he met his future wife, Meg Davies, the leading lady in the Old Vic’s production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. He was that rare thing, a North American actor whose range stretched authentically from Texas to Canada, but having trained in Britain he stayed there, making his home with Meg in Norfolk.
Voice was his mainstay, with regularly two or three studio jobs a day, and his website, bradlavelle.com, was a masterclass in progress on voice work, but he also found time to work in film, on television and in the theatre. He was Captain Kirk in Bromley’s Churchill Theatre production of Star Trek: The Lost Episode and Murphy in Chichester’s 2003 revival of The Front Page. His tremendous energy was also devoted to friendship, and at his death he and other friends were involved in a project to record the American blues artist Major Wiley, a singer overlooked by major labels.
Andrew Manson, his agent, said: “All who knew him have been deeply touched by his death, as has been seen from people’s reactions to the news. He will be sorely missed.”
He leaves his wife, Meg, his father, and his sister, Janet.
There will be a memorial service at St Paul’s, Covent Garden, on May 25 at 11am.