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Joan Tetzel

(1921-1977) - Actress

Joan Tetzel was born in the Bronx, New York. She studied at the American Academy of Dramatic Art. In the 1940s she was regularly heard in radio dramas in the USA. It was said that she worked on almost every dramatic broadcast originating in New York. She was directed by Orson Welles.

As a noted actress her stage performances included ’One flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest’. In 1949 she married actor Oscar Homolka. They acted together in 1955 in Ibsen’s ‘The Master Builder’. The drama critic of the New York Times wrote that her reckless, mischievous, egotistical young lady is superlatively well acted.

Her acting career included outstanding roles on Broadway and in Hollywood. She starred with Gregory Peck, Alan Ladd, Charles Laughton, and Kirk Douglas.

She was remembered for an acclaimed performance in ‘The Paradine Case’ directed by Alfred Hitchcock and worked with him on his television series ‘Alfred Hitchcock Presents’.

She moved with her husband to England in 1965. From 1965 until their deaths (in 1977 and 1978 respectively) Joan and Oscar lived in Beri-be-Dahn (now called Tibbs House) in Fairwarp. Their grave at Christ Church is notable for having theatrical masks engraved in the headstone.

To learn more about Joan Tetzel here

Research undertaken by Ian Brown, John Manthorpe and Jan Kemsley

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