Dudley Moore

Born: April 19, 1935
Died: March 27, 2002

Occupation: Actor, Comedian, Musician and Composer

Challenges overcome: Progressive Supernuclear Palsy

Successes, Achievements & Awards:

Dudley Moore, CBE was an actor, comedian, musician and composer. He rose to fame as part of the writer/performer team of comedy revue ‘Beyond the Fringe from 1960’. This was where he met Peter Cooke, who then went on to become his comedy partner in a number of works including Not Only….But Also.

Dudley Moore was born in London in 1935, and attended the Guildhall School of Music when he was 11 years old. He quickly developed into a very talented pianist and organist. His talent gained him a scholarship to Magdalen College in Oxford to study musical composition and theory. Whilst at university, Dudley developed a love of jazz music and soon became a skilled jazz pianist and composer.

In 1960, Dudley Moore started the ‘Beyond the Fringe’ revue which gained lots of success both in the UK and America. Along with his co-stars, Alan Bennet, Peter Cooke, and Jonathon Miller, the group won a Tony Award for their Broadway show of the revue in 1963, before they created a TV version of the show in 1964. Dudley Moore and Peter Cook began their TV show, Not Only…But Also, in 1965, and went to create three series of the show. They also featured in movies together, including ‘The Wrong Box’ and ‘Bedazzling’. They won another Tony Award for the stage adaption of Not Only…But Also, called Good Night, in 1974.

Moore was married and divorced four times: his first wife was Suzy Kendall and in 1975 he moved to live with her in New York and also started his solo comedy acting career. His secon wife was Tuesday Weld, and third wife was Brogan Lane and fourth wife was Nicole Rothschild. He had two sons, Patrick, in 1976 and Nicholas, born in 1995. He maintained good relationships with his first three wives but expressly forbade his fourth wife to attend his funeral. At the time his illness became apparent, he was going through a difficult divorce from Nicole Rothschild, despite sharing a house in Los Angeles with her and her previous husband. Moore also dated Susan Anton. In 1994, Moore was arrested after Nicole Rothschild claimed he had beaten her before that year’s Oscars but she later withdrew her charges.

Dudley Moore gained a large amount of fame for his roles in Foul Play, 10, and Arthur. His classical musical career performing as a solo pianist with major orchestras was successful and took Dudley on many tours with orchestras, performing around the world. Dudley was awarded a CBE in June 2001 by Prince Charles and he attended the ceremony in person despite being unable to speak and was wheelchair bound.

Challenges Overcome

Dudley publicly announced his battle with Progressive Supernuclear Palsy in 1999. Progressive Supranuclear Palsy (PSP) is degenerative neurological condition that involves the gradual deterioration and death of specific volumes of the brain.

After his diagnosis, Dudley devoted himself to raising money for The Dudley Moore Research Fund for PSP and Music For All Seasons, Inc, two charities that were very important to himself.

He died in March 2002 in his home in New Jersey from pneumonia, a complication of his PSP.

Disability Definitions

Progressive Supranuclear Palsy (PSP)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: Progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP; or the Steele-Richardson-Olszewski syndrome, was named after the physicians who described it in 1963) is a degenerative disease involving the gradual deterioration and death of specific volumes of the brain. Males and females are affected approximately equally and there is no racial, geographical or occupational predilection. Approximately 6 people per 100,000 population have PSP.

It has been described as a Tauopathy. Tauopathies are a class of neurodegenerative diseases associated with the pathological aggregation of tau protein in the human brain.




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Dudley Moore. (2015, June 24). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 18:26, June 29, 2015, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Dudley_Moore&oldid=668501308

Image source – Wikicommons

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