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 Walter Hampden

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Walter Hampden

  • Birth 30 Jun 1880 Brooklyn, Kings County (Brooklyn), New York, USA
  • Death 11 Jun 1955 Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, USA
  • Burial Brooklyn, Kings County (Brooklyn), New York, USA
  • Memorial ID 7987456

Actor. Born Walter Hampden Dougherty in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Alice Hill and John Hampden Dougherty. He graduated from Brooklyn Polytechnic Institute, after which he turned to the study of singing, dancing, and speech. He spent a year studying cello in France, and then joined Sir Frank Benson's Stock Company in Britain where was classical trained as an actor, playing some 70 classical roles in three years. He returned to the US in 1907, when he preformed 'Hamlet' on Broadway, widely held to be the finest American performance of the role. The production was successful enough to form that basis of his own repertory company. In 1923, his revival of 'Cyrano de Bergerac,' made such an impression on the public mind, the role continued to be associated with him for the rest of his life. He revived the play again in in 1926, 1928, 1932 and 1936. He and his leading lady, Ethel Barrymore, opened their own theatre in 1925, and appeared in notable productions of 'The Merchant of Venice' for the 1925 season, and 'An Enemy of the People' for the 1927 season. He made his feature film debut in 1939 in 'The Hunchback of Notre Dame.' Other films included 'They Died With Their Boots On' (1941); 'Reap the Wild Wind' (1942); 'All About Eve' (1950); 'Sabrina' (1954); and 'The Prodigal' (1955). He served as the host for the radio program, 'Great Scenes from Great Plays,' from 1948 to 1949. He made his television debut in 1949, when he reprised the role of 'Macbeth.' He was the fourth president of the Players’ Club, and served for 27 years. He last appeared on stage for a six month run of 'The Crucible' in 1953. His last film appearance was in 'The Vagabond King' (1956), which was released posthumously. A biography by Geddeth Smith, 'Walter Hampden: Dean of the American Theatre' was published in 2008.

Bio by: Iola


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: David Zipperer
  • Added: 15 Oct 2003
  • Find A Grave Memorial 7987456
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Walter Hampden (30 Jun 1880–11 Jun 1955), Find A Grave Memorial no. 7987456, citing The Evergreens Cemetery, Brooklyn, Kings County (Brooklyn), New York, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .