John Vickers photo theatre archive

John Vickers began his career in the 1930s as an assistant to the great theatre and society photographer Angus McBean with the legacy continuing in the dramatic fashion photography of Mario Testino, his own assistant during the 1970s.

A well-known stage and portrait photographer John Vickers photographed plays in many London theatres including, most prolifically, the Old Vic. His archive contains over 1,000 productions from the 40’s and 50’s as well as portraits of many actors, writers and musicians of that period.

As we continue to digitise the collection from prints and glass plates, a veritable treasure trove of rare images is being unearthed - here are just a few of the highlights so far:

Richard Burton’s professional debut in The Druids Rest, 1944
Maggie Smith’s London stage debut in Oxford Accents, revue, 1954
Designer Barbara Hepworth’s first theatrical commission for Electra at The Old Vic, 1951
Portraits of a very young Maureen Duffy in the early 1960s
Early portraits of Petula Clark in 1953 at the start of her career
ArenaPAL exclusively represent the John Vickers Archive as part of The University of Bristol Theatre Collection.

View all images from The John Vickers Archive

Jill Balcon (as Titania) ;
at the Old Vic Theatre, London, UK ;
1952 ;
Credit: John Vickers / University of Bristol / ArenaPAL


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