Sarah Siddons

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Sarah Siddons
Sarah Kemble
BirthplaceBrecon, Wales

Siddons, Sarah


Born July 5, 1755, in Brecon, Wales; died June 8, 1831, in London. English actress. Born into the Kemble theatrical family.

Siddons began her career in provincial theaters. D. Garrick invited her to perform in the Drury Lane Theater in London in 1775 in the roles of Portia and Lady Anne in Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice and Richard III, respectively. She played in the provinces again from 1776 to 1782. Her performance of the role of Isabella in Garrick’s version of T. Southerne’s The Fatal Marriage in 1782 brought her fame as a tragic actress. Siddons’ best role at Drury Lane was Lady Macbeth in Shakespeare’s Macbeth; her other Shakespearean roles included Constance in King John, Ophelia in Hamlet, and Imogene in Cymbeline.

Siddons left the stage in 1812. In 1819 she gave a final performance, acting the role of Lady Randolph in J. Home’s Douglas. Siddons’ acting, influenced by that of Garrick, anticipated the romantic school of acting.


Istoriia zapadnoevropeiskogo teatra, vol. 3. Moscow, 1957–63.
Boaden, J. Memoirs of Mrs. Siddons, vols. 1–2. London, 1827.
Campbell, T. Life Of Mrs. Siddons, vols. 1–2. London, 1834.
Manvell, R. Sarah Siddons: Portrait of an Actress. New York, 1971.


References in periodicals archive ?
10] Hazlitt's obituary of Mrs Siddons appeared in the New Monthly Magazine (1831), p.
Rebuilt two years later with the help of architect Sir Christopher Wren, the Theatre Royal provided a stage for a long list of famous stage names including Mrs Siddons, Garrick, Kean and Grimaldi.
The stuccoed White Lion with its huge pilasters and porch was the setting Henry Fielding used for his novel Tom Jones, It was also at this hostelry that the celebrated Mrs Siddons once acted.
Mrs Siddons, Dr Johnson, Captain Cook amongst others appeared on cameos, while a medallion showing a chained slave was Wedgwood's contribution to the anti-slavery campaign.