Topic: John Reed

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John Reed, OBE (born 13 February 1916), is a retired English actor, dancer and singer, known for his nimble performances in the comic leads of the Savoy Operas, particularly with the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company.

John Reed was born in the village of Close House, near Bishop Auckland, County Durham, the son of a butcher, and grew up near Darlington, County Durham. He studied elocution, dancing, singing and mime. Reed began his career in the theatre in plays and then in musical theatre for a number of years with the Darlington Operatic Society and as a director and dance instructor.

Reed joined the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company in 1951 as the understudy to Peter Pratt, who was then the principal comic baritone of the company. His first leads were mostly minor roles: Associate (1952-55) and the Learned Judge (1955-59) in Trial by Jury, Major Murgatroyd in Patience (1952-59), Second Citizen in The Yeomen of the Guard (1952-59), Annibale (1952-59) and Antonio (1953-59) in The Gondoliers, and Cox in Cox and Box (1957-59).

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