This section is continuously under development, with more details of Gareth's activities being added as we hear about them.
Note: the dates given for TV/Radio shows are where possible the first showing of the first episode where applicable, not when they were made.
Gareth has managed to die in a surprisingly large number of roles. The RIP symbol is shown against performances he is known to have died in.
Gareth has been known to bemoan the fact that he never gets to play lovers. The statistics seem to bear him out. Heart symbols indicate a romance, they appear to be heavily outnumbered by tombstones. (Parts where he is already married don't qualify. )
Gareth has said that he does't want to be thought of as just a Welsh actor, but as an actor who can do English and Welsh characters with equal ease. He has lived for a long time in England, and now in Scotland, after his early years in Wales. He has been cast in a lot of Welsh roles over the years. Leeks indicate Welsh parts.
Material here, comes from many sources including :- Blake's 7 magazine, Chris Blenkarn, Joyce Bowen, Sue Clerc, Robert Cheadle, Sue Cowley, Pat Fenech, The Freedom City Gazette (FCG), Horizon magazine, Julia Jones, Andrew Kearley, Gareth Randell, Judith Proctor, The Prydonian Renegade (March 96), Together Again - Action, TV Zone Special #4, Stellar Quines, Dundee Rep Theatre, Theatre Clwyd, The Magenta Partnership, Royal Lyceum Theatre - Edinburgh, Alan Stevens, Pete Wallbank, Andy Hopkinson, Mark Thompson, The Scottish Theatre Archive, Blake's 7 The Inside Story, The Archives of The Royal Shakespeare Company, Sheelagh Wells, Gareth Thomas and some very nice people who have asked not to be identified.
|22 Nov 1980||TV|
|1980||Convention||Star One Convention, England, the first Blake's 7 convention. Gareth showed up at the auction at the end.|
|1980||Theatre||What the Butler Saw By Joe Orton. At the Sherman Theatre at the University of Wales at Cardiff, and later at the Gate Theatre in Dublin. Gareth plays the police sergeant (Sergeant Match) who ends up in a dress at one point. Also with Angharad Rees.|
|1981?||Charity Walk||Gareth along with many other actors and personailities led by Henry Cooper, walked around White City Stadium to raise money for the Variety Club (a charity run by actors), this raised £30,000.|
|1981||TV||Peter and Paul (3hr TV movie).
In the last hour Gareth played Centurion Julius who escorts Paul (Anthony
Hopkins) to Rome and guards him there.|
Gareth talking to Barbara Teichert in The Prydonian Renegade: I remember doing a thing in Greece, an American production of the Acts of Peter and Paul, with Bob Foxworth as Peter and Tony Hopkins as Paul. I had a scene, five minutes I think it was, almost a five minute speech, with another British actor playing Nero, and it was the usual thing, half past eight in the morning or something, you come in, yes, fine where's the camera, mumble mumble, mumble mumble, here you go, "Turn over and action!" Went straight through this, he said, "Cut!" and everybody applauded. And I thought, "Well, that's very flattering, that's rather nice, good morning, world." And when I spoke to some of the technicians afterwards, I said, "That's very nice," and they said "What do you mean?" and I said, "Applauding, I thought that was great." "Oh, yeah, yeah. Well, ah, no offense meant here, but American actors can't do more than thirty seconds at a time. You do five minutes at once, my God." And I said, "Well that's what I get paid for, isn't it?"
This is available from Amazon (US - NTSC format only).
|23 Jan 1981||TV||Bergerac: Clap Hands, Here Comes Charlie BBC1, Popular police series starring John Nettles, set on Jersey. Gareth played a villainous ship's captain called "Towers" in this episode.|
|1981||TV||Ghosts No known information, is this a valid entry?|
|13 Jan 1982||TV|
|1982||Convention||Edgecon England , Also known as Convention at the Edge of the World, another B7 Con.|
|24 July 1982||TV|
Gareth (Horizon NL#21): The writer told me it was going to be made into a series, and he said: "I want you and David Daker, but the BBC are doing it not ITV." So I phoned my agent, but my agent came back and said: "Unfortunately David Daker is doing 'Boon', and therefore can't do this, and the BBC have said they either want both of you or neither." And so my one chance to do a Light Entertainment series went out the window. C'est la vie, that's the business.
|20 Jan 1983||TV|
|10 May 1983||Theatre||Educating Rita by Willy Russell. Gareth played Frank. At the Theatre Royal Windsor until 27 May 1983.|
|8 July 1983||TV|
|29 Feb 1984||TV||Strangers and Brothers (BBC Episodes 8 and 9, 1 hour each). Series based on the novels by C.P. Snow. Gareth plays a scientist who speaks out against the atom bomb.|
|10 Oct 1984||TV Interview|
|11 Oct 1984||TV|
Gareth talking to Joe Nazzaro (FCG#4):
Gareth: I did a series in England recently; one of the most difficult things I've ever done, actually, because the character was totally opposite to me, a Welsh hill farmer. It ended up the big boys moved in, kicked him out, and he couldn't cope with that. His whole life, and his parents were on this hill farm, so they kick him out and he goes back. His mother's room was a shrine to him, so he takes everything out into the courtyard and burns it, goes into the shed, shoots his sheep dog and shoots himself. It was a very beautiful story, nominated for various awards, and about two months later it was ... I'm sorry, am I boring you?
Joe: We'll give you a signal.
Gareth: I went down to the pub I used to drink in at lunchtime [and this man came up and said] "Oh Gareth, bloody great to see you, bloody fantastic! What are you doing here?" and he said, "Do you remember John?" and I said "John?" He said, " A bit like Morgan," which is the character I played. [He said] "He was a bit like Morgan." I said "Yes I remember; he had a beard," and he said, "That's right, that's John. Anyway, He shot himself last week, and left a message saying, Morgan's Boy showed me how to do it" and I thought, "Jesus Christ, how much responsibility can I take for what actually goes on?
|8 May 1984||TV|
|23 Nov 1984||TV Interview||Children in Need (BBC), TV telethon raising money for childrens charities, hosted by Terry Wogan.|
|1984||TV||Love and Marriage: Dearly Beloved
(Yorkshire TV, 1 hr). Gareth plays the lead as husband Stephen, a doctor whose
marriage is having problems.|
Gareth talking to Joe Nazzaro (FCG#7):
Joe: Do you get nervous, letting the real you show through the cracks sometimes?
Gareth:Well, I'll tell you something. I did a show a number of years ago - I can't remember what it's called now - with an actress that I knew by reputation but had never actually met. A very fine actress, and I knew her husband, but I didn't know her. The first scene ... Picture the first rehearsal: "How do you do, I'm Gareth Thomas..." The first scene begins at the moment of orgasm, and you think, "Now wait a minute, this is very personal here! Shall we start by saying which side of the bed would you like to sleep on?" There you suddenly ... you use experience, okay, but there is a frightening situation. How much of yourself do you actually show? I'm not telling on that one [laughter], but there's an example; if it happens, okay. That's an exception, because the last time I played a lover was about twenty years ago, but there is an example where you have to convice and say in the back of your mind, "I'm acting" That's a very difficult situation.
|17 Feb 1985||TV|
|19 Mar 1985||Theatre||Beside the Sea By Brian Jefferies. At the Theatre Royal, Windsor until 6 April 1985. Gareth played Arnold who is the focal point as the poet / deckchair attendant, who sees and knows all. - Gareth described this as a "wierd play".|
|1 July 1985||TV|
|5 Jul 1985||Convention|
|2 Sep 1985||TV||Duel with An Teallach (BBC 1 hr). Gareth plays Charles Handley, sturdy but doomed mountaineer. This is a re-enactment of a mountain climbing tragedy. The actors did all the actual climbing.|
|7 May 1986||TV Interview|
|3 Nov 1986||Theatre||Henry IV parts 1 & 2 and Henry V
English Shakespeare Company (ESC). Gareth played Glendower, Lord
Chief Justice, Scroop and Fluellen.|
They toured England, Wales, Germany, Paris and spent six weeks in Toronto.
Gareth to Joe Nazzaro (FCG#7): I was phoned up out of the blue by a theatre director (Michael Bogdanov) for whom I have enormous respect, who had turned me down for a job some years before. He only likes working with people he's worked with before, and I wasn't one of them. But this time I was phoned up by him to play the Welsh parts in Henry IV pt 1, Henry IV pt 2 and Henry V. This was for a new company being set up to tour around Britain, France, Germany and Toronto Canada. I hemmed and hawed, and I finally said yes, okay, because I admired the director.
We did Henry VI pt 1 on Monday, Henry VI pt 2 on Tuesday, Henry V on Wednesday afternoon, Henry VI pt 1 on Wednesday evening, Henry VI pt 2 on Thursday, Henry V on Friday, and all three on Saturday; that was twelve hours of theatre. It was known as "The Marathon." Doctors have said that going on stage, if you take it seriously and get nervous, is the equivalent of having a minor car crash. We used to walk in on a Saturday morning and say, "Goddamn it, I'm sitting here, I'm hung over, and I've got three minor car crashes to go through in twelve hours in this bloody theatre! What am I doing for a living?" Having said that, we did it in Hamburg, Germany on a Sunday, and it was fifteen minutes before they allowed us off the stage. They were cheering, stamping, shouting, whistling - everything. It was amazing; it was an experience I'd never had before. It was ten minutes before they let us out of the Old Vic in London. It was directed as a trilogy, so that Saturday was actually the great day. You came up knackered but on a great high, really on a high, which meant that Monday was hell! We went from sublime to the ridiculous on that one, because we did the trilogy on a Saturday in Paris and opened in Hull on a Monday. I suppossed that's like saying we did a trilogy in Tinsel City and then opened up on Monday in Detroit! No offense to the people of Detroit.
After this run, Gareth was offered the John Woodvine part of Falstaff but refused it, since he didn't have time to really study it and make it his own. He said if he had done it, he would have been imitating Woodvine's version.
Michael Bogdanov and Michael Pennington wrote a book, "The English Shakespeare Company: The Story of The Wars of the Roses" about the first three seasons of the ESC.
Gareth Thomas appeared in the first (1986-1987) season. Michael Bogdanov said: "I rang Gareth Thomas, a fellow Welshman. He would do anything to give his Fluellen. His Fluellen turned out to be incomprehensible, North Walian, delivered with machine-gun rapidity. Very, very funny when you could understand it. He was so fast that subsequent versions of Henry V without him ran fifteen minutes longer." [pp. 33-34; GT was replaced by Sion Probert when he left the ESC.] There's a tiny picture of GT in this production, not very recognizable between the huge beard and the huge sheepskin hat.
The ESC got into a dispute with Equity about overtime payments. "The actors were represented by Morris Petty and Gareth Thomas. [...] Gareth was emotional. We had 'sold them down the river,' 'kicked them in the teeth.' All they had got for their pains was 'a slap in the face.'" [pp. 84-85; the tribunal awarded a fairly small amount to all the actors to settle the claim.]
Summing up the first season, Michael Pennington refers to "Gareth Thomas's marvellous Fluellen, loyal and verbose" [p. 93.]
GT's roles in the 1986-1987 tour, which ran from November 3 1986-June 27 1987, with 78 performances of each part of Henry IV and 79 performances of Henry V:
Henry IV Part 1 - Owen Glendower
Henry IV Part 2 - Lord Chief Justice (i.e., a shift from "The Rebels" to "The King's Party")
Henry V - Lord Chief Justice, Fluellen.
|1986 - 1987||TV||The District Nurse. (BBC)
Period drama set in 1930's Wales, starred Nerys Hughes in the title role
(Megan) and Sian Philips played her mother. Ran for 4 years from 1984 to 1987, with 13
episodes per year. We don't know which episode(s) or even which series Gareth
Gareth recorded an episode of District Nurse in August or September 1986. (After Benefactors finished in July and before joining ESC.) So that means the show was probably aired in 87, though it could have been 86.
|6th Sep 1987||TV|
|8 Jan 1988||TV|
|29 Feb 1988||Theatre||Dangerous Corner By J B
Priestly, At the Churchill theatre Bromley, Richmond and Bath for 3 weeks,
Gareth played Charles Stanton (a villain), with Judy Buxton (Inga in
Hostage) as Freda Caplan. At Bromley from 29 Feb to 5 March.|
Gareth to Joe Nazzaro (FCG#7): I did the actor's nightmare: a play by an author called J.B.Priestly called Dangerous Corner, a good old potboiler written in the '30s. My agent phoned me up on a Tuesday evening and said to me "Gareth, I've had Bromley Theatre on the phone and they're doing Dangerous Corner by J.B.Priestly. Do you know it?" I said "I know the name but I have never seen it, and I've never read it." He said, "Well, the villain (an actor named James Warwick) has slipped a disc. They're finishing this week in Bromley, and then they're going to Richmond here in Surrey, and then Bath. Would you take over? I said "Yes, Okay" and he said "Go down to Bromley tomorrow morning and get the script." I said, "Right," put down the phone, and thought to myself, "Jesus Christ, you have just walked into the actor's nightmare! You've got a steady cast going, they know what they're doing, they know the words, and I'm taking over!" I went down on Wednesday lunchtime, I got the script, I went to the pub on Wednesday lunchtime, I read the script, and I went on stage with it on Saturday afternoon (without the script). I worked my butt off! Now that is where somebody off the street couldn't do it. That's training. It's panic, but it's training.
Joe: You said you looked forward to a challenge...
Gareth: That was a challenge, and I got good reviews, too. The reason that I had been asked to do it was because the director of it had been the assistant director at the Royal Shakespeare Company when I did Orsino, and the fellow playing Cassio in Othello had dislocated his kneecap, and I took that over in four days. He admitted to me, he said, "I went through a list of my mates, and I thought Gareth! He did Cassio in four days; he can do this in three."
|21 Aug 1988||TV|
|17 Oct 1988||Convention||Space City Con England, First convention that had both Paul Darrow and Gareth Thomas at the same time.|
|Sep 1988||Audio Tape||Under Milk Wood
by Dylan Thomas. Gareth played Mog Edwards - this also stars seemingly every
actor and singer in Wales - including Anthony Hopkins, Jonathan Pryce, Sian
Philips, Tom Jones, Bonnie Tyler, Mary Hopkin, Philip Madoc, Windsor Davies,
Sir Geraint Evans, Ruth Madoc, Aled Jones, Ray Smith, Freddie Jones and Sir
This recording was released in 1988. A few years later, virtually the identical cast was brought together again and the performance was filmed. We believe that about an hour of this was shown on Television. The audio cassette was re-released at this time and the copyright date was changed to 1992. However the audio tape is not actually a recording of the filmed performance, but simply the 1988 recording re-packaged. Sadly, this tape is no longer avilable.
This wa definately shown in the US, and was probably shown by LWT (London Weekend Television) in 1988. Review
|1989||TV||To Each His Own ( TV movie 1¾ hours). Gareth plays an unscrupulous developer. Not BBC - therefore one of the ITV companies.|
|10 Feb 1989||Convention|
|March 1989||Radio Play||The Taff End 1 hr comedy about rugby supporters, by Ewart Alexander. Gareth plays Gary, a Welsh ex-rugby international who meets a friend of his. They both want a ticket to the England/Wales match. This was broadcast at about the same time as the annual England/Wales rugby match.|
|March 1989||Radio Play||New World in the Mourning wild Welsh comedy (BBC Radio 4) about God, politics (Thatcher vs. socialism), homosexuality, elections, personal ethics. Gareth plays Emlyn Parry of the Labour party, running for parliament.|
|12 Apr 1989||Theatre||Inside Job At Theatre Royal, Windsor
12-29th of April 1989 and at other venues. |
A Windsor Newspaper (Francis Batt): The Glamour of Life in Luton.
Who would not envy the glamourous life of a film star, making movies in exotic locations? Actress Prunella Gee - currently starring in the play Inside Job at Windsor's Theatre Royal - wondered just what attractive setting she would be working in when she was cast as Sean Connery's girlfriend (or one of them) in his belated comeback to the role of James Bond in the 1983 film Never Say Never Again.
"Some of the film was set in the Bahamas and some in the south of France. But guess where all my scenes ended up being filmed - in Luton" said Prunella. Her co-star in Inside Job, Gareth Thomas (of Blakes 7 fame) can beat that though. He was once phoned by a producer and offered the choice between two roles in a new production.
It was not until I had chosen the one I wanted that he had the cheek to tell me that it was all being filmed over here, while the other role I had turned down was being filmed in the Bahamas...
|7 Jul 1989||Convention|
|23 Jul 1989||TV|
|2 Oct 1989||TV|
|25 Oct 1989||Theatre|
Gareth in the Prydonian Renegade: I think Lear was certainly the most difficult thing I'd ever done on stage. You actually walk offstage totally and utterly exhausted. There's no two ways about that. That's it. You go out there, you give it everything you can, and you walk off and say, "Whew." I'll tell you how exhausted I got - sometimes I didn't even get to the bar for over half an hour! And there are lots of pitfalls. I remember, doing Lear, there was one occasion, a matinee I think it was, and Lear in the first scene, his first scene, towards the end of it he loses his temper for the first time and I mean really goes for Cordelia. Doing this matinee I suddenly thought "Why have all the cast turned upstage?" The audience didn't notice and I carried on. The line is, "So be my grave my peace, as here I give her father's heart from her." And apparently I'd said "As here I give her hather's fart from her," and all the cast cottoned on and turned upstage. But the audience didn't have a clue.
|Late 1989||Video||Masquerade Introduced a video tape about makeup for Sheelagh Wells.|
|16 June 1989||TV|
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Last updated on 06th of May 2002.