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Tommy Steele est un Acteur et Histoire Britannique né le 17 décembre 1936

Tommy Steele

Tommy Steele
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Nom de naissance Thomas William Hicks
Nationalité Royaume-uni
Naissance 17 décembre 1936 (85 ans)
Récompenses Officier de l'ordre de l'Empire britannique

Tommy Steele OBE (born Thomas William Hicks, 17 December 1936) is an English entertainer, regarded as Britain's first teen idol and rock and roll star. Dubbed Britain's answer to Elvis Presley, he reached number one with "Singing the Blues" in 1957, and The Tommy Steele Story was the first album by a UK act to reach number one.

Steele's film credits include Half a Sixpence, The Happiest Millionaire and Finian's Rainbow, and he has made many stage tours in the UK. He is also a songwriter, author and sculptor. His claim to have shown Elvis Presley around London has been challenged by more than one source.


Before landing a singing career, Steele tried his hand at a number of odd jobs and had a brief spell as a merchant seaman. Unlike many singers of his age, he never did national service because, at eighteen years old, he was diagnosed as suffering with cardiomyopathy. However, according to his autobiography, Bermondsey Boy: Memories of a Forgotten World, he failed the medical because he had flat feet. While on leave or during dock strikes, he played guitar and banjo and sang in two coffee houses in Soho (the 2i's Coffee Bar and the Cat's Whisker where hand-jiving was devised), both as a solo performer and with Wally Whyton's Vipers Skiffle Group.

When a ship Steele was serving on docked in Norfolk, Virginia, USA, he heard Buddy Holly and fell in love with rock and roll, turning his back on the British skiffle craze. He was discovered by freelance photographer John Kennedy, who believed Steele could be Britain's answer to Elvis Presley. Later co-manager Larry Parnes was incorrectly credited with creating the stage name 'Tommy Steele.' It was Steele who adapted the surname of his Scandinavian paternal grandfather, Thomas Stil-Hicks (pronounced Steel-Hicks), adding another E to the spelling.

Steele shot quickly to fame in the UK as the frontman for a rock and roll band, the Steelmen, after their first single, "Rock With the Caveman", reached number 13 in the UK Singles Chart in 1956. Steele and other British singers would pick known hit records from the United States, record their cover versions of these songs, and release them in the UK before the American versions could enter the charts. Most of Steele's 1950s recordings were covers of American hits, such as "Singing the Blues" and "Knee Deep in the Blues". Although Steele never proved a serious threat to Presley's popularity in the UK, he did well on the 1950s UK chart and "Singing the Blues" got to Number 1 in the UK before Presley did so. Guy Mitchell was number 1 with "Singing the Blues" on 4 January 1957 and Tommy Steele on 11 January 1957. Steele's 1957 album, The Tommy Steele Story, was the first by a UK-based act to reach No. 1 in the UK.

Only four months after his first chart presence, he was filming his life story. To do so, Steele and his songwriting collaborators, Lionel Bart and Mike Pratt, wrote twelve songs in seven days. His first three single releases were issued at a rate of one every three weeks. In 1957 Steele bought a four-bedroomed house in South London for his parents. In August 1959, Steele undertook a three-day concert visit to Moscow.

In late 2009 his greatest hits collection, The Very Best of Tommy Steele, reached the Top 40 in the UK Albums Chart. This was the first UK chart entry, of any kind, that Steele had enjoyed for over 48 years.

The increase in home-grown musical talent during the 1950s and 60s allowed Steele to progress to a career in stage and film musicals, leaving behind his pop idol identity. In 1957 he was voted the seventh most popular actor at the British box office.

In 1960 his singing popularity was winding down – a tour of Australia was not particularly successful. On his return to England he received two offers, one to star in the play Billy Liar, the other to join the Old Vic Company. He chose the latter.

In the West End he appeared in She Stoops to Conquer and played the title role of Hans Christian Andersen. On film, he recreated his London and Broadway stage role in Half a Sixpence, and played character roles in The Happiest Millionaire and Finian's Rainbow, although many critics found his personality to be somewhat overwhelming on screen. In this latter film, probably his best known appearance in the films, he played Og, the leprechaun turning human, and co-starred with Petula Clark and Fred Astaire. In 1968 British exhibitors voted him the fourth most popular star at the local box office.

In April 1971, Steele starred in his own show Meet Me in London at London's Adelphi Theatre.

In 1983, Steele directed and starred in the West End stage production of Singin' in the Rain at the London Palladium. In 1991 he toured with Some Like It Hot the stage version of the Jack Lemmon/Tony Curtis/Marilyn Monroe film. In 2003, after a decade-long hiatus, save his one-man shows An Evening With Tommy Steele and What A Show!, he toured as Ebenezer Scrooge in a production of Scrooge: The Musical, an adaptation of Scrooge. Following this return, he reprised his role at the Palace Theatre, Manchester over Christmas 2004, and brought the production to the London Palladium for Christmas 2005. In 2008, at the age of 71, Steele toured in the lead role of the stage musical Doctor Dolittle, and has reprised his role as Scrooge every Christmas season since 2009.
He was the subject of This Is Your Life in 1958 when he was surprised by Eamonn Andrews at the BBC Television Theatre.

Personal life and other talents
Steele was born in Bermondsey, London. He married Ann Donoghue at St. Patrick's Church, Soho Square, London, in 1960. They have one daughter, Emma.

In the early 1980s, Steele wrote and published a novel titled The Final Run about World War II and the evacuation of Dunkirk.

He also wrote a children's novel, entitled Quincy, about a reject toy trying to save himself and his fellow rejects in the basement of a toy store from the furnace the day after Christmas. This was turned into a film in 1979, in which Steele played Quincy and Mel Martin played Quincy's girlfriend doll, Rebecca.

He is a respected sculptor and three of his major works have been on public display: Bermondsey Boy at the Rotherhithe Civic Centre (which was subjected to an arson attack by local youths some years ago and no longer exists), and Eleanor Rigby which he sculpted and gave to the City of Liverpool as a tribute to the Beatles. The statue stands in Stanley Street, Liverpool, not far from the Cavern Club. Steele has another sculpture featuring two rugby players on display at Twickenham Stadium. He is also an artist of some note and has exhibited at the Royal Academy.

Steele is mentioned briefly in Ian Fleming's James Bond novel Thunderball.

Steele's autobiography was published in September 2006 and is entitled Bermondsey Boy: Memories of a Forgotten World (London: Joseph) ISBN 0-7181-4972-6.

Steele co-wrote many of his early songs with Lionel Bart and Mike Pratt, but he used the pseudonym of Jimmy Bennett from 1958 onwards.

Claimed meeting with Elvis Presley in Britain
For many years it was thought that Elvis Presley had never set foot in Britain, apart from spending a few minutes on the tarmac at Prestwick Airport in Scotland where his military plane, en route to the United States after completing his army service in West Germany, stopped to refuel. However, on 21 April 2008, in a BBC Radio 2 interview with theatre impresario Bill Kenwright, it was claimed that Presley, then 23, had visited Britain for a day, after a phone conversation with Steele in London in 1958.

According to Kenwright: "Elvis flew in for a day and Tommy showed him round London. He showed him the Houses of Parliament and spent the day with him". Kenwright admitted on 22 April 2008 that he was not sure whether he should have told the story. Steele said: "It was two young men sharing the same love of their music. I swore never to divulge publicly what took place and I regret that it has found some way of getting into the light. I only hope he can forgive me."

Press officers employed by Stagecoach, the company that owns Prestwick Airport, rapidly issued a statement requesting proof, photographic or otherwise, of the said meeting. Until such proof is provided, they will continue to describe their property, Prestwick Airport, as being the only place in Britain where Elvis Presley ever set foot and will not be removing the marker, photographs and special lounge at their airport which relate to their claim.

Lamar Fike, a former member of the Memphis Mafia, who lived with Presley at the time, has posted a claim that it was he, not Presley, who visited London and Steele for a day in 1958.

Le plus souvent avec

Source : Wikidata

Filmographie de Tommy Steele (12 films)

Afficher la filmographie sous forme de liste


La Vallée du bonheur, 2h25
Réalisé par Francis Ford Coppola
Origine Etats-Unis
Genres Science-fiction, Comédie, Fantasy, Musical, Romance
Thèmes La musique, Le racisme, Théâtre, Musique, Adaptation d'une pièce de théâtre, Adaptation d'une comédie musicale
Acteurs Fred Astaire, Petula Clark, Tommy Steele, Don Francks, Keenan Wynn, Barbra Hancock
Rôle Og
Note61% 3.099153.099153.099153.099153.09915
Le mystérieux Irlandais Finian McLonergan arrive à Rainbow Valley, une ville du Sud des États-Unis, accompagné de sa charmante fille Sharon.
Le Plus Heureux des milliardaires, 2h24
Réalisé par Norman Tokar
Origine Etats-Unis
Genres Drame, Comédie, Musical
Thèmes La musique, Musique, Films pour enfants
Acteurs Fred MacMurray, Tommy Steele, Greer Garson, Gladys Cooper, Geraldine Page, Hermione Baddeley
Rôle John Lawless
Note67% 3.397023.397023.397023.397023.39702
L’histoire nous présente un immigrant irlandais nommé John Lawless, récemment devenu majordome dans la famille d’un millionnaire excentrique de Philadelphie, Anthony J. Drexel Biddle. Lawless se plait parmi cette famille bizarre et joue ensuite le narrateur de l’histoire de cette famille tout le long du film.
Half a Sixpence, 2h23
Réalisé par George Sidney
Origine Royaume-uni
Genres Drame, Musical, Romance
Thèmes La musique, Musique, Adaptation d'une pièce de théâtre
Acteurs Tommy Steele, Julia Foster, Cyril Ritchard, Elaine Taylor, Grover Dale, Pamela Brown
Rôle Arthur ("Artie") Kipps
Note64% 3.244263.244263.244263.244263.24426
Dans l'Angleterre victorienne, un jeune orphelin, Arthur Kipps, découvre une pièce de six pences alors qu’il marche le long d’un ruisseau avec sa jeune amie, Ann. Il coupe la pièce en deux et en donne une moitié à Ann en tant que symbole de leur amour. Kipps se rend ensuite dans une ville voisine pour travailler en tant qu'apprenti chez un drapier. Le temps passe et il devient un homme. Il se lie d'amitié avec Harry Chitterlow, acteur et dramaturge, qui découvre que Kipps est l'héritier d'une fortune qui lui a été laissée par son grand-père.
Light Up the Sky!, 1h30
Réalisé par Lewis Gilbert
Origine Royaume-uni
Genres Drame, Guerre, Comédie, Romance
Thèmes Bidasses, Politique, Adaptation d'une pièce de théâtre
Acteurs Ian Carmichael, Tommy Steele, Dick Emery, Benny Hill, Sydney Tafler, Victor Maddern
Rôle Eric McCaffey (as Gunner Tommy Steele)
Note62% 3.146653.146653.146653.146653.14665
This comedy is about a bumbling searchlight unit during World War II. Ensemble acting creates a series of intertwining stories that involve the various soldiers assigned to this post. Lt. Ogleby (Ian Carmichael) is the cheerful, inept officer in charge, then there is the womanizer whose concept of birth control is limited, the lovesick soldier unhappy over a misunderstanding with his girlfriend, the Cockney cook, the father-figure, and several others. Their trials and tribulations provide the bulk of the comedy, such as it is. [1]
Kill Me Tomorrow, 1h20
Réalisé par Terence Fisher
Origine Royaume-uni
Genres Thriller, Policier
Acteurs Pat O'Brien, Lois Maxwell, George Coulouris, Wensley Pithey, Tommy Steele, Ronald Adam
Rôle Lui-même
Note54% 2.7331452.7331452.7331452.7331452.733145
After suffering a series of personal setbacks and in desperate need of cash, reporter Bart Crosbie tries to get his old job back. But when he returns to the newspaper offices, Crosbie discovers that his former boss has been murdered. He is then offered money by the killer, a diamond smuggler, to take the murder rap.
L'histoire de Tommy Steele, 1h10
Réalisé par Gerard Bryant
Origine Royaume-uni
Genres Drame, Musical
Acteurs Tommy Steele, Tommy Eytle, Hilda Fenemore, Cyril Chamberlain, Bryan Coleman, Lisa Daniely
Rôle Lui-même
Note55% 2.7875052.7875052.7875052.7875052.787505
Tommy Steele lives with his mother and father in their London home. He works with a bellboy until he injures his spine doing judo. In hospital he is given a guitar to help with his therapy and he starts to play to entertain patients and staff. He works on an ocean liner, performing in his spare time, and gets a job playing in a coffee bar. He is popular with audiences and gets a recording contract.
King of the Rocket Men
Réalisé par Fred C. Brannon
Origine Etats-Unis
Genres Science-fiction, Action, Aventure, Policier
Thèmes Transport, Aviation
Acteurs Tristram "Tris" Coffin, Mae Clarke, Don Haggerty, House Peters, Jr., Tommy Steele, I. Stanford Jolley
Note68% 3.4434453.4434453.4434453.4434453.443445
An evil genius of unknown identity, calling himself "Dr. Vulcan" (heard only as a voice and seen as a shadow on a brightly lit wall), plots to conquer the world, but first needs to eliminate, one by one, the members of the Science Associates, an organization of America's greatest scientists. After narrowly escaping an attempt on his life by Vulcan, one member of Science Associates, Dr. Millard (James Craven) goes into hiding and then outfits another member, Jeff King (Tristram Coffin) with an advanced, sonic-powered rocket backpack and jacket, a bullet-shaped, aerodynamic helmet, and raygun they had been working on together.