RSC stalwart Spriggs dies

Royal Shakespeare Company artistic director Michael Boyd has paid tribute to RSC veteran Elizabeth Spriggs, who has died aged 78.

Spriggs, who was an honorary associate artist of the RSC and had played many of the female leads in the Shakespearean repertoire, also performed at the National Theatre and on film and TV. She also received an Olivier Award for best supporting actress in 1978 for her performance in Love Letters on Blue Paper.

Boyd commented: “The RSC owes Elizabeth an inestimable debt. Throughout the sixties and much of the seventies, she gave us her best work and played a leading role in the formation and early success of our theatre company.

“Last year she took pride of place, upstage centre, in our very last performance on the old Royal Shakespeare Theatre stage, which had seen so many of her brilliant performances. Her Paulina rang out true as a bell, as if it was still 1970. Just two months ago her generous and passionate spirit was in evidence again, championing the needs of her fellow actors as we discussed dressing room provision in our backstage plans for the new Royal Shakespeare Theatre. We are lucky that Elizabeth cared so much about this company and we will miss her greatly now that she is gone.”

A full obituary will appear in a future edition of The Stage.

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