John Sichel


John Sichel

John Sichel (21 September 1937 - 5 April 2005) was a British director of film, stage and television, and, later in life, a television and theatre trainer.

Early in his career, he was asked by Laurence Olivier to direct the National Theatre Company in the award-winning film of Anton Chekhov's Three Sisters (1970) with Olivier, Joan Plowright and Alan Bates. He then went on to direct Olivier in Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice (1976) and Alec Guinness and Ralph Richardson in Twelfth Night (1969). He also produced the first three series of the UK TV show Thriller.

His experience as a commissioner and director of drama and drama-documentaries enabled him to work with some of the world's finest actors including Derek Jacobi, Helen Mirren, Sir Laurence Olivier, Anthony Hopkins, Alec Guinness, Sean Connery, Ralph Richardson and Michael Caine. He has also worked as a director and trainer at several of the UK's leading theatres and institutions including the Young Vic, the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, RADA, the Shaw Theatre, the Italia Conti Academy, the London Film School and the Edinburgh Festival.

During the latter years of his life, he established ARTTS International in Bubwith, East Riding of Yorkshire, a training facility supporting artists in employment with the stage, film and television industry. Along with wife Elfie, they helped 500 young people gain employment from afar as Indonesia and Iran.

After his death in 2005 hundreds of these trainees came from all over the world to pay their respects in a tribute arranged by his family.

He was the father of British psychologist and TV presenter Tanya Byron and TV producer Katrina Sichel.

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