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Joe Orton
Birth: Jan. 1, 1933
Death: Aug. 9, 1967

British playwright. Born: John Kingsley Orton. Specialized in black comedy; the term "Ortonesque" was coined to mean "outrageously macabre" after his work. After an uneventful childhood, except for bouts of ill health, he became interested in theatre and joined several dramatic societies. He also used this period to improve his appearance, language and make up for a lack of education. He was accepted into the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art which he entered in 1951. He met Kenneth Halliwell there the same year and began a relationship that lasted until both their deaths. They collaborated on a number of novels, most of which are unpublished. Later, ideas from the novels would surface in the plays for which Orton became famous. A colorful and controversial career as an openly gay playwright began in the early sixties, however Halliwell's contributions and career were eclipsed by Orton's success and personality. Halliwell came to rely on drugs to combat his depression and frustration. It ended when he murdered Orton on August 9, 1967, and committed suicide directly afterwards. The next morning was to have been a meeting between Orton and the Beatles to discuss a script he was writing for them. Cremated at Golders Green Crematorium his ashes were mixed with Halliwell's then scattered in the Garden of Remembrance at Golders Green. Orton's most famous plays are: The Ruffian on the Stair (1964), Entertaining Mr Sloane (1964), Loot (1965), and What the Butler Saw (1969 posthumous). (bio by: Vincent Astor) 
Family links: 
  William Charles Orton (____ - 1978)
  Elsie Mary Bentley Orton (1904 - 1966)

Cause of death: Homicide
Golders Green Crematorium
Golders Green
London Borough of Barnet
Greater London, England
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Record added: Aug 20, 1998
Find A Grave Memorial# 3473
Joe Orton
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Joe Orton
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Joe Orton
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