Ivor Novello

Actor, Singer, Playwright
A matinee idol of the stage, Ivor Novello went on to duplicate that same success when he pursued a film career, becoming at one time Britain's most popular male movie star. Born in Cardiff, Wales as David Ivor Davies ... Read more »
Born: 01/15/1893 in United Kingdom

Filmography

Actor (5)

Downhill 1926 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Lodger 1925 (Movie)

(Actor)

Carnival (Movie)

Count Andrea Scipione (Actor)

The Constant Nymph (Movie)

Louis Dodd (Actor)

The White Rose (Movie)

Joseph Beaugarde (Actor)
Writer (4)

Free and Easy 1930 (Movie)

(Play Author)

Downhill 1926 (Movie)

(Play as Source Material)

Tarzan, the Ape Man (Movie)

(Dialogue Writer)

Tarzan, the Ape Man (Movie)

(Screenwriter)
Music (1)

Gosford Park 2001 (Movie)

("Waltz of My Heart" "Nuts iin May" "And Her MOther Came Too" "What a Duke Should Be" "Glamorous Night" "The Land of Might-Have-Been" "I Can Give You the Starlight" "Why Isn't It You" "Keep the Home Fires Burning" "The Way It's Meant to Be") (Song)

Biography

A matinee idol of the stage, Ivor Novello went on to duplicate that same success when he pursued a film career, becoming at one time Britain's most popular male movie star. Born in Cardiff, Wales as David Ivor Davies adopted his mother's maiden name as his stage name. (His mother, Clara Novello Davies, was a noted musician and singing teacher.) As early as age three, the youngster exhibited his singing abilities and by age ten was attending Magdalen College at Oxford on a music scholarship. When he left Oxford at age 16, Novello briefly taught piano in London, but within a year enjoyed his first success as a songwriter. Over the next few years, he eked out a living penning ditties until the outbreak of World War I when his patriotic song "Keep the Home Fires Burning" became an overnight hit, earning its composer-lyricist a small fortune. During the War, Novello made his theatrical debut providing more than a dozen songs for the 1913 revue "Theodore & Co." (Jerome Kern contributed four additional numbers.)

Relationships

J Ackerley

Companion

Bobbie Andrews

Companion
enjoyed long-term artistic collaboration

Gladys Cooper Actor

Companion
reportedly had relationship in the early 1920s

David Davies

Father

Clara Davies

Mother
Italian born in 1861 died in 1943

Christopher Hassall

Companion

Siegfried Sassoon

Companion
had brief relationship

EDUCATION

Magdalen College Choir School, Oxford University

1909
enrolled at age 10 in 1903; attended on scholarship as a boy soprano

Milestones

1950

Last stage musical, "Gay's the Word"

1948

Wrote script and composed score for the film version "The Dancing Years"

1944

Did the libretto for the stage musical "Perchance to Dream"

1940

Penned the screenplay for "Free and Easy"

1939

Wrote the stage musical "The Dancing Years"

1937

Reprised stage role in film version of "Glamorous Night"

1935

Starred in and wrote the stage musical "Glamorous Night"

1933

Starred in and wrote "I Lived with You"

1932

Co-wrote the screenplay of "Tarzan, the Ape Man"

1930

Wrote lyrics for the feature "Elstree Calling"

1928

Had starring role in "The Constant Nymph"

1928

Play "The Truth Game" produced

1927

Second film with Hitchcock, "Downhill"

1927

Starred on stage in the Noel Coward play "Sirocco"

1926

Directed by Alfred Hitchcock in "The Lodger"

1925

Adapted play "The Rat" into feature film; first of ten movies with Gainsborough Pictures

1924

With Constance Collier, wrote the play "The Rat"

1924

Produced the film "Lovers in Araby"

1923

Cast opposite Mae Marsh in "The White Rose", helmed by D.W. Griffith

1922

Starred in "The Bohemian Girl" which catapulted him to prominence as a matinee idol

1921

First English film, "Carnival"

1919

Film acting debut in "Call of the Blood/L'Appel du sang", directed by Louis Mercanton

1916

Enlisted as a pilot in the Royal Naval Air Service

1914

Composed one of the most popular songs of WWI, "Keep the Home Fires Burning"

1910

Had first song published

1909

Worked briefly as a piano teacher

1903

Enrolled at Oxford on music scholarship

Entertained British troops during the war

Bonus Trivia

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In 1956, the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors instituted the annual Ivor Novello Award to be presented for outstanding contributions to British music.

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