Sir Francis "Frank" Robert Benson (4 November 1858 – 31 December 1939), commonly known as Frank Benson or F. R. Benson, was an English actor-manager. He founded his own company in 1883 and produced all but three of Shakespeare's plays.
1 Biography 2 Family 3 Filmography 4 Notes 5 References 6 External links
Biography Born in Tunbridge Wells, Benson was educated at Winchester and New College, Oxford, and at the university was distinguished both as an athlete (winning the Inter-university three miles) and as an amateur actor. In the latter respect he was notable for producing at Oxford the first performance of a Greek play, the Agamemnon, in which many Oxford men who afterwards became famous in other fields took part. On leaving Oxford, Benson took to the professional stage, and made his first appearance at the Lyceum, under Henry Irving, in Romeo and Juliet, as Paris, in 1882. In the next year he went into managership with a company of his own, taken over from Walter Bentley, and from this time he became gradually more and more prominent, both as an actor of leading parts himself and as the organizer of practically the only modern repertory company touring through the provinces.
A photograph of Frank Robert Benson as
Benson's chief successes were gained out of London for some years, but
in 1890 he had a season in London at the Globe and in 1900 at the
Lyceum, and in later years he was seen with his repertoire at the
His company included from time to time many actors and actresses who,
having trained under him, became prominent on their own account, and
both by his organization of this regular company and by his foundation
of a dramatic school of acting in 1901, Benson exercised a most
important influence on the contemporary stage.
From the first he devoted himself largely to the production of
Shakespeare's plays, reviving many which had not been acted for
generations, and his services to the cause of
Julius Caesar (1911) *short The Taming of the Shrew (1911) *short Richard III (1911) (*short, not feature) MacBeth (1911) *short Becket (1923)
^ a b c d e f Chisholm 1911. ^ Stratton, Clarence (April 1916). "A preserver of the Shakespeare tradition". Theatre Magazine. XXIII (182): 221. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Benson, Francis Robert". Encyclopædia Britannica. 3 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. "Benson, Sir Francis Robert". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/30714. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
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The Bensonian Players Frank Benson on IMDb
WorldCat Identities VIAF: 34724433 LCCN: no2007157853 ISNI: 0000 0000 6313 5341 BNF: cb14855193f (data) BIBSYS: 90597