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Friday, December 26, 2014


(Richard Loring accepting his award. Pic by Gareth Jacobs)

The Arts & Culture Trust (ACT) named Richard Loring as the 2014 ACT Lifetime Achievement Award for Theatre.

Actor, singer, director, producer and mentor, Richard Loring, started his career singing in the church choir from the age of seven where he gained training in eisteddfods and classical lieder. In 1962, Loring went to London to join the George Mitchell singers in the Ken Dodd Show in Manchester, followed by Oh Marry Me at the Royal Windsor Theatre and studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. He understudied and played Hero in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum at the Strand Theatre, and went on to play Rolf in The Sound of Music for three years at the Palace Theatre.

Other shows include Robert and Elizabeth and The Student Prince at the Cambridge Theatre and a role in Sir Richard Attenborough’s first film Oh, What a Lovely War. In 1969, Loring was invited to South Africa to play Tony in The Boyfriend and West Side Story. Although later performing in Lock up your Daughters and the narrator in Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, to name a few.

In his film career Richard starred in a vast number of films including The Winners 1 (My Way overseas), The Baby Game and The God’s must be Crazy II. Loring’s recording contract with EMI International began with Sixteen Going on Seventeen from The Sound of Music in 1966. Gina’s Theme, the theme song from The Winners, was his first hit in South Africa and its follow-up, Beautiful Children, topped the charts for 18 weeks.

In 1977 at Abbey Road Studios he recorded There’ll Never Be Anyone Else but You and Wonderful Summer with Sir Cliff Richard. Richard’s LP Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat achieved platinum status.

He has starred in many TV shows and co-presented with Delia Sainsbury the live award-winning Video Two for three years. In 1983 he teamed up with production director, Debbie Batzofin, to produce the company Specialized Entertainment and Major Events for corporate clients. He went on to open the Sound Stage Supper Theatre in Midrand in 1989. As Entertainment Consultant for Gold Reef City, Loring assisted in opening two new theatres, the Globe Theatre in 2000 and the Lyric Theatre in 2007, where he co-produced the multi-award-winning productions Hairspray, Saturday Night Fever, That’ll be the Day and Knights of Music.

While he has enjoyed much success in diverse fields of entertainment, it is probably as producer and creator of the multi-award-winning African Footprint that he is best known today, receiving standing ovations over 12 years from enthusiastic audiences around the globe. In 2012, he teamed up with business colleague, Roland Seidel to open Richard’s Supper Stage in Sea Point.

After more than 52 years in the industry Loring is still performing, producing shows and consulting. He is working towards creating an African Footprint Academy – a sustainable body where highly-trained cast can pass on their skills to talented young South Africans.

The 2014 ACT Awards ceremony was sponsored by Nedbank Arts Affinity, hosted by Sun International and presented in association with the Dramatic, Artistic and Literary Rights Organisation (DALRO), Media24 Books, ClassicFeel Magazine and was supported by the Distell Foundation and Business and Arts South Africa (BASA).

Other Lifetime Achievement Award Winners include Richard Cock for Music, Sam Nzima for Visual Art, Andre Brink for Literature and Mandie van der Spuy for Arts Advocacy. Each Lifetime Achievement Award winner received R30,000 as a cash prize.

For more information about the Arts & Culture Trust (ACT) visit