Maureen Lipman

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Maureen Diane Lipman CBE (born 10 May 1946) is a British film, theatre and television actress, columnist, and comedienne.


Early life

Lipman was born in Kingston upon Hull in the East Riding of Yorkshire, England, the daughter of Maurice Julius Lipman and Zelma Pearlman.[1] Her father was a tailor; he used to have a shop between the Ferens Art Gallery and Monument Bridge. She attended Newland High School for Girls in Kingston upon Hull and was encouraged into an acting career by her mother, who used to take her to the pantomime and push her onto the stage. Lipman trained at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art.


Lipman worked extensively in the theatre following her début in a stage production of The Knack at the Palace Theatre, Watford. In order to get the post she pretended that a documentary producer wanted to follow her finding her first job-this was a lie but it seemed to work.[2] She was a member of Laurence Olivier's Royal National Theatre Company at the Old Vic. She made an early film appearance in Up the Junction. After early appearances in the sitcoms The Lovers, and Doctor at Large, Lipman first gained prominence on television in the 1979 situation comedy Agony, in which she played an agony aunt with a troubled private life. She played the lead role in the television series All at No 20 and took on a range of diverse characters when starring in the series About Face. She is well-known for playing Joyce Grenfell in the biographical show Re: Joyce!, which she co-wrote with James Roose-Evans, and another memorable character Beatrice Bellman (Beatie/BT), a Jewish grandmother in a series of television commercials for British Telecom. She has continued to work in the theatre for over thirty years, playing, amongst other roles, Aunt Eller in the National Theatre's Oklahoma! with Hugh Jackman.

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