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Julia McKenzie

McKenzie portraying fictional sleuth, Miss Marple
Born Julia Kathleen McKenzie
17 February 1941 (1941-02-17) (age 68)
Enfield, Middlesex, England, UK
Occupation actress, presenter, director, writer
Years active 1973–present

Julia McKenzie (born 17 February 1941) is an English actress and theatre director.



McKenzie was born in Enfield, Middlesex, England, the daughter of Kathleen Rowe and Albion McKenzie.[1] She is also a patron of The Stephen Sondheim Appreciation Society.



In London's West End her performing credits include Guys and Dolls (Miss Adelaide) and Sweeney Todd (Mrs Lovett), winning the Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Musical for both, and Woman in Mind for which she received the Evening Standard Award for Best Actress. She has also appeared in Follies and Into the Woods. She appeared in Side By Side By Sondheim in the West End and on Broadway, and was nominated for a Tony Award and a Drama Desk Award for her performance.


On television, McKenzie co-starred with Irene Handl in the sitcom Maggie and Her (1978-79). She went on to greater popularity with British viewers as Hester in Fresh Fields and the sequel French Fields in the 1980s opposite Anton Rodgers, for which she was voted TV Times Favourite Female Comedy Performance for five consecutive years. She also appeared as Mrs Forthby in Blott on the Landscape and as a Midsomer villager involved in a series of murders in an episode of Midsomer Murders. Film credits include Hotel du Lac, Shirley Valentine, Bright Young Things and These Foolish Things.

In 2007 she was reunited with Anton Rodgers (again as a husband and wife team) in the ITV comedy You Can Choose Your Friends. In Autumn 2007 she co-starred with Michael Gambon and Judi Dench in the BBC1 costume drama series Cranford, playing Mrs Forrester, a military widow of slender means, very attached to her Alderney cow Daisy. This role was mooted to be given to GI Moore before McKenzie got the part.

She was announced as the replacement for Geraldine McEwan as ITV's Miss Marple.[2] On the announcement she said, "Just about everybody in the world knows about Miss Marple and has an opinion of what she should be like, so I’m under no illusions about the size of the task ahead. And I suppose I’ll have to remind myself how to knit!" McKenzie's first series of Marple comprises A Pocket Full of Rye, Murder is Easy, Why Didn't They Ask Evans?, and They Do It with Mirrors. She is currently filming her second series of the show, beginning with The Mirror Crack'd from Side to Side.

Other work

She is a radio performer with a long list of credits including Blithe Spirit, The Country Wife and A Room with a View. As a director she has staged Stepping Out, Peter Pan, Hey, Mr. Producer!, Steel Magnolias, Putting It Together and A Little Night Music.

She also recorded an audio book of Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking Glass.[3]




  • (London debut) Maggie May, Adelphi Theatre, 1966
  • Gloria, Mame, Drury Lane Theatre, London, 1969
  • Girl in owl coat, Promises, Promises, Prince of Wales Theatre, London, 1970
  • April, Company, Her Majesty's Theatre, London, 1971
  • Cowardy Custard, Mermaid Theatre, London, 1973
  • Cole, Mermaid Theatre, 1974
  • (New York debut) Side by Side by Sondheim, Music Box Theatre, NewYork City, 1977
  • Norman Conquests, 1978
  • Ten Times Table, 1979
  • Miriam Dervish, Outside Edge, Queens Theatre, 1979
  • Lily, On the Twentieth Century, Her Majesty's Theatre, 1980
  • Maggie Hobson, Hobson's Choice, Lyric Hammersmith Theatre, London,1981
  • Anna Kopecka, Schweyk in the Second World War, Olivier/National Theatre, London, 1982
  • Miss Adelaide, Guys and Dolls, Olivier/National Theatre, 1982
  • Susan, Woman in Mind, Vaudeville Theatre, London, 1986
  • Sally Plummer, Follies, Shaftesbury Theatre, London, then West EndTheatre, New York City, 1987
  • Witch, Into the Woods, Phoenix Theatre, London, 1990
  • Sweeney Todd, National Theatre, London, 1994
  • Kafka's Dick, Picadilly Theatre, 1998
  • Fuddy Meers, Arts Theatre, 2004
  • The Philadelphia Story, Old Vic, 2005


  • Stepping Out, Duke of York's Theatre, London, 1984
  • Just So, Watermill Theatre, Bagnor, Berkshire, England, 1989
  • Steel Magnolias, Lyric Theatre, London, 1989
  • Putting It Together, Manhattan Theatre Club Stage I, New York City, 1993
  • (With Bob Avian) Hey Mr. Producer! The Musical World of Cameron Mackintosh, Lyceum Theater, London, 1998
  • A Little Night Music, Tokyo, 1999


External links


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