Associated Press file (2006)
Saturday, July 11, 2015|2:30 p.m.
Roger Rees, the slender Tony Prize-winning Welsh-born star and director who made his mark onstage as Nicholas Nickleby and later played English multi-millionaire Robin Colcord on the TV show “Cheers,” has actually died. He was 71.
Rees died Friday night at his house in New york city after a quick fight with cancer, stated his agent, Rick Miramontez. Rees had quickly left “The Go to” on Broadway in late May to undergo a medical treatment.
“The world has lost an excellent actor, gentleman and soul,” said Chita Rivera, Rees’ co-star in “The Visit” this year. “I have actually lost a lovely brand-new pal, one I was looking forward to spending interesting important time with.”
Rees played the snobbish Robin Colcord on TV’s “Cheers”– he was understood for his condescending remarks and rivalry with Sam Malone and for dating Rebecca Howe– and the British ambassador, Lord John Marbury, in “The West Wing.” Other current TELEVISION credits consist of “Elementary” and “The Good Partner.”
But he was probably very well known onstage for playing the title character in the Royal Shakespeare Company’s original production of Charles Dickens’ “The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby” in England and on Broadway. He won an Olivier Award and after that a Tony. When it was adapted to TV, he earned an Emmy Award election.
“Roger was inspirational. He had the perpetual boyishness and mischief of a Peter Pan, remarkable wit integrated with a present for self-satire, and dauntless optimism combined with deep-rooted belief. All these ingredients went into his acting, and I make sure, into his directing, and provided him an aura of uncommon, charitable spirited humankind,” said Trevor Nunn, who directed “Nicholas Nickleby.”
Rees also played Malcolm in an acclaimed 1976 stage and 1978 tv production of “Macbeth” and starred in the initial production of “The Genuine Thing” by Tom Stoppard in London in 1984.
He earned 2 more Tony nominations in 1995 for “Indiscretions” and in 2012 for co-directing “Peter and the Starcatcher,” a Peter Pan prequel. Other Broadway roles were in “The Addams Household,”” Uncle Vanya,”” The Rehearsal,””The Red Shoes”
and”London Assurance.” “Roger was that some combination of amazing skill and massive kindness and gentility,” stated Todd Haimes, the creative director of the Roundabout Theatre Company, which produced a popular revival of “The Winslow Child” starring Rees in 2013. “I, and everybody I know, genuinely loved Roger.”
Born in Aberystwyth, Wales, in 1944, he invested more than 20 years with the Royal Shakespeare Company and worked as the artistic director of the Williamstown Theatre Celebration in Massachusetts from 2004 to 2007. He was also the associate creative director of the Bristol Old Vic in England for two years beginning in 1985.
In movie, Rees played the Sheriff of Rottingham in Mel Brooks’ “Robin Hood: Male in Leggings” in 1993 and was in “The Scorpion King” in 2002 and “The Pink Panther” in 2006.
He is made it through by his partner Rick Elice, the playwright, whose credits consist of the “Peter Pan” prequel “Peter and the Starcatcher,” which Rees co-directed.