Currently, Vanessa is narrating the role of the author in the BBC TV series ‘Call the Midwife’.
VANESSA REDGRAVE was born in South London on January 30, 1937. Her mother, actress Rachel Kempson, was married to actor Michael Redgrave whose father, mother and grandfather had been actors. Michael’s mother was known on the stage as “Daisy Scudamore.”
Vanessa trained at the Ballet Rambert before being accepted by the Central School of Speech and Drama where she worked with Litz Pisk, a superb dancer / teacher who sought refuge in England from the invasion of Austria by Hitler’s armies. Her singing coach, Janl Strasser, the chief coach at Glyndebourne Opera House, had been a refugee with his wife from fascist Hungary at the beginning of World War II.
On stage, she most recently played Mrs.Higgins in the Lincoln Centre Theatre's production of "My Fair Lady" at the London Coliseum. She completed a podcast with Trudi Styler and Mark Rylance and was recently seen in the feature film Mrs. Lowry and Son, co-starring Timothy Spall playing the famous British artist L.S. Lowry. She made her directorial debut with the documentary Sea Sorrow, produced by her son, filmmaker Carlo Nero, which was specially selected for the CannesFilm Festival in 2017 and televised by SKY ARTS in Italy. “Vienna 1934 – Munich 1938: A Family Album” was the first play Vanessa wrote, directed and acted in. It was workshopped at The Rose Theatre, Kingston on Thames, in 2018 and produced for two weeks during the Summer Season of 2019 at the Theatre Royal, Bath.
Among other honours, Vanessa has received an Oscar, a Tony, 2 Golden Globes, 2 Primetime Emmys, 2 Cannes Film Festival Best Actress Awards, a Venice Film Festival Golden Lion, a Screen Actors Guild Award and the prestigious BAFTA Fellowship Award.
She is a founding member of the ULYSSES Theatre Company. Vanessa played Queen Margaret in the Almeida Company’s production of “Richard III” when the company played on the Island of Mali Brijuni in 2017.
Vanessa’s most recent feature film roles include Letters to Juliet, Coriolanus, Foxcatcher and Mrs. Lowry and Son (2019).
Among the film achievements Vanessa feels most proud of is HBO Films’ The Fever, televised by HBO in 2007. The film was written by Wallace Shawn and directed by Carlo Nero.