Basil Langton, British Actor Who Worked in London, U.S. and Canada, Dead at 91

Obituaries   Basil Langton, British Actor Who Worked in London, U.S. and Canada, Dead at 91
Basil Langton, a British-born actor who worked in England, Canada and the United States, in everything from Shakespeare to "Star Trek: Voyser," died May 29 in Santa Monica, CA, after a brief illness, according to The Los Angeles Times.

Mr. Langton was 91 and had remained active in theatre into the 1980s. His daughter, Jessica Andrews, is managing director of Arizona Theatre Company.

Mr. Langton was born in Bristol, England, and raised in Montreal and Vancouver, and began acting at the Vancouver Little Theater when he was a teenager. He would later study mime and dance at Dartington Hall in Devon, England, and shared London stages with the leading actors of his day. Among his roles was understudy to Laurence Olivier in Macbeth in 1937. He fellow players over the years would be Peggy Ashcroft, Ralph Richardson, Paul Scoffield and Sybil Thorndike, among others.

According to the L.A. Times, during World War II Mr. Langton was granted conscientious objector status and spent time as an actor-manager of the Travelling Repertory Theater, staging works in munitions factories and British army camps in Europe. His wife, Louise Soelberg, was a ballerina and she choreographed dances for several of these stagings. Their marriage ended in an amicable divorce. Mr. Langton is survived by his companion, actress Judith Searle.

Mr. Langton and Soelberg moved to the U.S. in 1947, and joined the faculty at Catholic University in Washington, DC, and later he moved to the faculty of Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, NY. All the time, he still worked as an actor and director in Toronto and in American regional theatres. The actor was also a respected photographer whose work was seen in exhibits.

The L.A. Times reported Mr. Langton met Judith Searle in 1966, in a regional production of Hostile Witness, a British thriller by Jack Roffey. Internet Broadway Database indicates Mr. Langton directed Broadway's 13 Rue de l'Amour for Circle in the Square in 1978, and a play called Sing Till Tomorrow in 1954. In 1968, he appeared in a play called Soldiers on Broadway.

His final acting job was playing "the domineering overseer of the people in the fictional land of Ocampa" in "Star Trek: Voyager," the pilot for the television series, according to the Times.

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