Roger William Allam (born 26 October 1953) is a British actor, who has performed on stage, in film, on television and radio.

Roger Allam
Roger Allam La Cage 120909 DSCF1622.JPG
Allam in 2009
Roger William Allam

(1953-10-26) 26 October 1953 (age 69)
Bow, London, England
Years active1976–present
SpouseRebecca Saire

He played Inspector Javert in the original London production of the stage musical Les Misérables, First Officer Douglas Richardson in the award-winning radio series Cabin Pressure, and DCI Fred Thursday in the TV series Endeavour. He is also known for his roles as Illyrio Mopatis in the HBO series Game of Thrones, Royalton in Speed Racer, Lewis Prothero in the 2005 adaptation of V for Vendetta and as Peter Mannion MP in The Thick Of It.

He has been nominated a Laurence Olivier Award six times, winning thrice.

Life and careerEdit

Allam was born in Bow, London, England. He was educated at Christ's Hospital and Manchester University.[1][2] His father was rector of St Mary Woolnoth.[3]

He played Mercutio for the Royal Shakespeare Company, in 1983.[4]

From 1985 to 1986, he played Inspector Javert in the original London production of the stage musical Les Misérables.

He has also appeared in many radio dramas for the BBC. In 2001, he starred in BBC Radio 4's adaptation of Les Misérables, as Valjean. In 2000 he played Adolf Hitler at the Royal National Theatre in David Edgar's Albert Speer. He won an Olivier Award as Best Actor 2001, for his role as Captain Terri Denis in a revival of Privates on Parade, opening in December 2001 at the Donmar Warehouse, Covent Garden. In November 2002 at the Comedy Theatre he co-starred with Gillian Anderson in Michael Weller's romantic comedy What the Night Is For.

In 2003, he appeared as former West German federal chancellor Willy Brandt in Michael Frayn's play Democracy which opened at the Cottesloe Theatre, in the Royal National Theatre. He stayed with the show for its transfer to the West End. In December 2004 and January 2005, Allam appeared as the villainous Abanazar in a pantomime of Aladdin at the Old Vic theatre, co-starring Ian McKellen, Maureen Lipman and Sam Kelly. He reprised this role at the Old Vic, once again with Ian McKellen and Frances Barber in 2006–07. In August 2005, Allam appeared in Blackbird by David Harrower alongside Jodhi May at the Edinburgh Festival in a production by German star director Peter Stein. The play transferred to the Albery Theatre in London in February 2006. Blackbird subsequently won a best new play award.

In 2006 he appeared in Stephen Frears's film The Queen, starring Oscar-winner Dame Helen Mirren, as the Queen's private secretary. In February 2007, he performed in the 1960s farce Boeing-Boeing at the Comedy Theatre in the West End, co-starring Mark Rylance, Frances de la Tour and Tamzin Outhwaite. In 2007, he appeared for the first time as Peter Mannion MP in the special episodes of the BBC comedy The Thick of It. He reprised the role in the third series (2009), and returned in the final series (2012) as part of the expanded regular cast.

In 2008, Allam played the role of Max Reinhardt, the Salzburg Festival impresario in Michael Frayn's play Afterlife, the production staged by Michael Blakemore on the National Theatre's Lyttelton stage.[5] In 2009, Allam played Albin/Zaza in La Cage aux Folles at the Playhouse in London. Allam played Falstaff in Henry IV, Part 1 and Henry IV, Part 2 at Shakespeare's Globe, in the 2010 season.[6] He won the Olivier Award for Best Actor.[7] In October 2010, Allam was reunited with his former cast mates from Les Misérables in the 25th anniversary concert for a performance of "One Day More".

In January 2012, he starred in the first series of Endeavour, the prequel to the long-running Inspector Morse, playing the gruff but kind-hearted Detective Inspector Fred Thursday, young Endeavour Morse's mentor in 1960s Oxford. By 2018 Allam had portrayed his central character in five additional well-received series, which are also aired in America as part of the PBS Masterpiece Mystery! series. In March 2019, the show's sixth season had concluded on ITV, was scheduled for broadcast in the summer in the United States, and had been recommissioned for a seventh season to be set in 1970.[8]

In April 2012 he also starred as Serebrayakov in the play Uncle Vanya by Anton Chekhov at the Chichester Festival Theatre. In 2013 he played the role of Prospero in William Shakespeare's play The Tempest at Shakespeare's Globe theatre in London[9] alongside Colin Morgan as Ariel. Allam presented Michael Frayn at the 2013 Olivier Awards with a Special Lifetime Award which was aired by ITV1. Allam has also reteamed with Stephen Frears in Tamara Drewe, the film version of Posy Simmond's popular comic strip. He plays the crime novelist Nicholas Hardiment, who is bewitched by London journalist Tamara Drewe, played by Gemma Arterton. In the closing chapter of his Timebends autobiography (1987) Arthur Miller writes of Allam: "To play the 1986 Royal Shakespeare Company production of The Archbishop's Ceiling, Roger Allam gave up the leading role as Javert in the monster hit Les Misérables because he had done it over sixty times and thought my play more challenging for him at that moment of his career. Nor did he consider his decision a particularly courageous one. This is part of what a theatre culture means and it is something few New York actors would have the sense of security even to dream of doing."[10]

Allam narrated the Channel 4 series The Auction House.[11]

In October and November 2016 Allam appeared as Brigadier Adrian Stone in the BBC series The Missing.[12]

Since January 2020, Allam has co-starred with Joanna Lumley in the BBC Radio 4 comedy drama series Conversations from a Long Marriage.[13] As of February 2023, the show is in its fourth series.[14]

In March 2022, Allam debuted in the lead role of Antoine Verlaque in Murder in Provence, a BritBox cosy crime drama based on the Verlaque & Bonnet detective novels by ML Longworth, alongside Nancy Carroll (The Crown) as his romantic partner Marine Bonnet.[15][16]

Allam voices the demon Azazel in the 2022 Netflix adaptation of Neil Gaiman's The Sandman.

Personal lifeEdit

Allam is married to actress Rebecca Saire, with whom he has two sons, William, an actor, and Thomas.[17] He, Rebecca and William appeared together in the Endeavour episode Raga (series 7, episode 2, broadcast February 2020). In that episode, Rebecca and William played mother and son.[18][19]

He identifies as being on the political left, and has also publicly castigated Donald Trump.[20][21]



Year Title Role Theatre
1976 Vinegar Tom Doctor/Man/Bellringer/Packer Humberside Theatre, Hull
1979 Mary Barnes Lecturer/Angie's brother Royal Court Theatre
1981 Twin Rivals Subtleman/Richmore
1981 Two Gentlemen of Verona Outlaw
1981 Titus Andronicus Demetrius
1981, 1983 All's Well That Ends Well Morgan Royal Shakespeare Theatre (1981) Martin Beck Theatre (1983)
1982 Our Friends in the North Conrad
1982 Poppy Lin
1983 The Charge of the Light Brigade (RSC Festival) Terence Gawain Hackett
1983 Typhoid Mary (RSC Festival) Dr Soper
1984 Romeo and Juliet Mercutio Royal Shakespeare Theatre
1984 A Midsummer Night's Dream Theseus/Oberon
1984 Richard III Clarence Royal Shakespeare Theatre
1984 Today Victor Ellison
1984 The Party Ford
1985 The Dream Play The Officer
1985–1986 Les Misérables Javert Barbican Theatre (1985) Palace Theatre (1986)
1986 The Archbishop's Ceiling Adrian
1986 Heresies Pimm
1987 Measure for Measure The Duke Vincentio
1987 Twelfth Night Sir Toby Belch
1987 Julius Caesar Brutus
1989 The Fairy Queen Oberon Aix-en-Provence Festival
1990 The Seagull Trigorin
1990 Much Ado About Nothing Benedick
1991 Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Jekyll
1992 Madras House Philip Madras Lyric Hammersmith
1992 Una Pooka Angelo Tricycle Theatre
1993 City of Angels Stone Prince of Wales Theatre
1994 Arcadia Bernard Nightingale Theatre Royal Haymarket
1995 The Importance of Being Earnest Jack Worthing Old Vic Theatre
1995 The Way of the World Mirabell National Theatre
1997–1998 ART Serge(1997) Marc(1998) Wyndham's Theatre
1996 Macbeth Macbeth
1996 The Learned Ladies Trissotin
1999 Summerfolk Bassov National Theatre
1999 Money Henry Graves National Theatre
1999 Troilus and Cressida Ulysses National Theatre
2000 The Cherry Orchard Lopakhin National Theatre
2000 Albert Speer Adolf Hitler National Theatre
2001 Privates on Parade Terri Dennis Donmar Warehouse
2002 What The Night Is For Adam Penzius Comedy Theatre
2003 The Woman in White Performer Sydmonton Festival
2003 Democracy Willy Brandt National Theatre
2004, 2005 Aladdin Abbanazar The Old Vic
2006 Blackbird Ray Albery Theatre
2006 Pravda Lambert Le Roux Chichester Festival Theatre, Birmingham Repertory Theatre
2007 Boeing, Boeing Bernard Comedy Theatre
2007 The Giant Leonardo da Vinci Hampstead Theatre
2008 Afterlife Max Reinhardt National Theatre
2009 La Cage Aux Folles Albin/Zaza Playhouse Theatre
2009 God of Carnage (UK Tour) Michel Vallon
2010 Henry IV Parts 1 & 2 Falstaff Shakespeare's Globe
2013 The Tempest Prospero Shakespeare's Globe
2014 Seminar Leonard Hampstead Theatre
2015 The Moderate Soprano John Christie Hampstead Theatre
2017 Limehouse Roy Jenkins Donmar Warehouse
2019 Rutherford and Son John Rutherford, Sr Royal National Theatre[23]
2020 A Number Salter Bridge Theatre[24]
2020 Uncle Vanya Serebryakov Harold Pinter Theatre, London



Year Title Role Notes
1989 Wilt Dave
2002 Stranded Thomas Blunt
2005 A Cock and Bull Story Adrian
2006 V for Vendetta Lewis Prothero
The Wind That Shakes the Barley Sir John Hamilton
The Queen Robin Janvrin
2008 Speed Racer E.P. Arnold Royalton
Inkheart Narrator Voice
2010 Tamara Drewe Nicholas Hardiment
2011 Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides Henry Pelham
The Iron Lady Gordon Reece
2012 The Woman in Black Mr. Bentley
The Angels' Share Thaddeus
2013 The Book Thief Narrator/Death Voice
2015 Mr. Holmes Dr. Barrie
A Royal Night Out Stan
The Lady in the Van Rufus
2016 The Truth Commissioner Henry Stanfield
2017 The Hippopotamus Ted Wallace
2023 Tetris Robert Maxwell


Year Title Role Notes
1989 Ending Up Dr. Mainwaring TV film
The Fairy Queen Oberon
1990 The Investigation: Inside a Terrorist Bombing Charles Tremayne
1992 Shakespeare: The Animated Tales Duke Orsino/Narrator Voice
TV mini-series
Episodes: "The Winter's Tale" & "Twelfth Night"
1994 Screen Two Stephen Summerchild TV series
Episode: "A Landing on the Sun"
1997 Inspector Morse Denis Cornford TV series
Episode: "Death Is Now My Neighbour"
The Bill Ralph Marchbank TV series
Episode: "Hitting the Nerve"
1998 Heartbeat Graham Hayes TV series
Episode: "Echoes of the Past"
Midsomer Murders Alan Hollingsworth TV series
Episode: "Faithful unto Death"
1998–2000 The Creatives Charlie Baxter TV series
1999 RKO 281 Walt Disney TV film
2002 Foyle's War Alastair Graeme TV series
Episode: "Eagle Day"
Waking the Dead Benjamin Gold TV series
Episode: "Thin Air"
2003 The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone Christopher TV film
2005 The Inspector Lynley Mysteries Simon Featherstonehaugh TV series
Episode: "The Seed of Cunning"
2005–present Muffin The Mule Narrator Audiobooks only
2006 Spooks Paul Millington TV series
2007–2012 The Thick of It Peter Mannion TV series
2008 The Curse of Steptoe Tom Sloane TV film
2009 The Old Guys Ned TV series
Episode: "The Therapist"
Margaret John Wakeham TV film
Kröd Mändoon and the Flaming Sword of Fire General Arcadius TV series
Ashes to Ashes DSI Mackintosh
2011 Game of Thrones Magister Illyrio Mopatis TV series; Episodes: "Winter is Coming" & "The Wolf and the Lion"
2012 Parade's End General Campion TV series
2012–2023 Endeavour DI Fred Thursday
2013 The Politician's Husband Marcus Brock
2013-2016 Sarah & Duck Narrator
2014 Bad Education Maurice Hewston
2016 The Missing Adrian Stone
Ethel & Ernest Middle Aged Doctor Voice
TV film
2020 The Station: Trouble on the Tracks Narrator Documentary
2020 Uncle Vanya Serebryakov A TV film initially released in cinemas of the play performed at the Harold Pinter Theatre, London to an empty theatre due to then Prime Minister Boris Johnson's decision to shut down theatres throughout Britain.
2022 Murder in Provence Investigating Judge Antoine Verlaque TV series
2022 The Sandman Azazel TV series


Year Title Role Notes
1992 Les Liaisons Dangereuses Valmont BBC Radio 4 adaptation
1992 The King's General Sir Richard Grenvile.[25] BBC Radio 4 adaptation
1997 The Man in the Elephant Mask Joseph Merrick.[26] BBC Radio 4 two-parter
2008 The Ring and the Book Guido Franceschini[27] BBC Radio 4 adaptation
2008 Will Smith's Midlife Crisis Management Will's godfather, Peter[28] BBC Radio 4 series
2008–2014 Cabin Pressure First Officer Douglas Richardson.[29] Four series on BBC Radio 4, and two specials
2010 Mark Lawson – What do you know? DCI Parsons[30] BBC Radio 4 drama
2010–present How Does That Make You Feel? Richard Fallon MP[31] Ten series, BBC Radio 4 comedy
2011 The Magnificent Andrea Barry[32] BBC Radio 4 comedy drama
2012 Blithe Spirit Charles[33] BBC Radio 4 comedy
2014 Edmund Gosse – Father and Son Philip Henry Gosse [34] BBC Radio 4 drama
2014–2015 War and Peace General Mikhail Kutuzov[35] BBC Radio 4 adaptation, episode aired on New Years Day 2015
2018–present Conversations from a Long Marriage Roger [36] BBC Radio 4 comedy


Allam has narrated several audiobooks, including Solar by Ian McEwan.


  1. ^ Lobb, Adrian (11 January 2016). "Roger Allam: "The arts have become elitist"". The Big Issue. Retrieved 3 April 2019.
  2. ^ "Drama Pupils Privileged to Learn from the Brilliant Roger Allam". Retrieved 3 April 2019.
  3. ^ Gore-Langton, Robert (25 November 2002). "Acting? This is the real thing". The Times.
  4. ^ "Roger Allam on Mercutio from 'Romeo and Juliet'". Official Website of Roger Allam. Retrieved 11 July 2015.
  5. ^ "Productions : Afterlife". National Theatre. 16 December 2020.[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ Smith, Alistair (23 April 2010). "Roger Allam to play Falstaff at Globe". The Stage.
  7. ^ "Roger Allam Wins Best Actor". Olivier Awards. 13 March 2011. Retrieved 14 March 2011.
  8. ^ "ITV Renewed Endeavour For Season 7". Retrieved 8 February 2019.
  9. ^ Mesure, Susie (6 April 2013). "Roger Allam: Lear in waiting". The Independent.
  10. ^ "Stage". Official Website of Roger Allam. Archived from the original on 19 June 2015. Retrieved 11 July 2015.
  11. ^ Wollaston, Sam (18 June 2014). "The Auction House - TV review". The Guardian. Retrieved 11 July 2015.
  12. ^ Gill, James (26 October 2016). "The Missing series 2 episode 2: what is Roger Allam's character Brigadier Stone up to?". Radio Times.
  13. ^ Producer: Claire Jones (22 January 2020). "Why Didn't You Ask Me to Dance?". Conversations from a Long Marriage, Series 1. BBC Radio 4. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  14. ^ "Conversations from a Long Marriage, Series 4, She Drives Me Crazy". BBC Radio 4. Retrieved 27 February 2023.
  15. ^ "Murder in Provence reveals teaser for Roger Allam's new crime series". Radio Times. Retrieved 7 March 2022.
  16. ^ Kanter, Jake (25 May 2021). "BritBox Sets Crime Series 'Murder In Provence' As First U.S. & UK Co-Production". Deadline. Retrieved 7 March 2022.
  17. ^ Hodges, Michael (2 June 2017). "Endeavour's Roger Allam on playing an alcoholic and his own boozy days". Radio Times. Retrieved 31 October 2020.
  18. ^ Cast list from DVD, ITV Studios, dated 2019
  19. ^ "Drama Pupils Privileged to Learn from the Brilliant Roger Allam". Retrieved 3 April 2019.
  20. ^ Billen, Andrew (7 March 2017). "How Roger the leftie got to like Roy the rebel". The Times. Retrieved 31 October 2020.
  21. ^ Greenstreet, Rosanna (3 June 2017). "Q&A: Roger Allam: 'I just want to be remembered'". The Guardian. Retrieved 31 October 2020.
  22. ^ "Stage". Official Roger Allam Fan Site. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  23. ^ "Rutherford and Son | National Theatre". 15 January 2019. Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  24. ^ "A Number". Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  25. ^ "The King's General". BBC.
  26. ^ "The Man In The Elephant Mask".
  27. ^ "BBC Radio 4 - Classic Serial, The Ring and the Book, Episode 1". BBC.
  28. ^ "BBC Radio 4 – Will Smith's Midlife Crisis Management". BBC.
  29. ^ "BBC Radio 4 – Cabin Pressure". BBC.
  30. ^ "BBC Radio 4 - Drama, Mark Lawson - What do you know?". BBC.
  31. ^ "British Comedy Guide - How Does That Make You Feel?".
  32. ^ "BBC Radio 4 - Drama, The Magnificent Andrea". BBC.
  33. ^ "BBC Radio 4 Extra - Noel Coward - Blithe Spirit". BBC.
  34. ^ "BBC Radio 4 Extra - Edmund Gosse - Father and Son, Episode 1". BBC.
  35. ^ "BBC Radio 4 – War and Peace, Episode 10". BBC.
  36. ^ "BBC Radio 4 – Conversations from a Long Marriage". BBC.

External linksEdit