Hello all and welcome to “P.S. Laughter is Life!” Sorry I had a corny moment there. Give me a break on the title it’s a work in progress! (I’m taking suggestions for blog titles in the comments section below, Peter Sellers fanatics please help!)
You may be asking “why am I here?” Well the short answer is that you’re probably an avid fan of comedic genius, classic films and may have a friend that told you to read up on the famous British actor, Peter Sellers. Perhaps you’re looking for information for a school assignment or inspiration for a path into comedic acting. Either way, you’re in the right place!
Peter Sellers: Man, Myth, Legend
Welcome to the first installment of our Peter Sellers fan blog, the biography! Ladies and gents you most likely have access to all the info I’m about to lay out but I’ll do my best to spice up and make this pleasurable for you lovely readers.
Peter Sellers, for those of you who are just stumbling across this brilliant man, was a British actor and comedian who left this earth too soon for many of us fans. He was born during the 1920s into an acting family. His birth name is Richard Henry Sellers but his parents dubbed him “Peter” after his older stillborn brother (if that sounds like it may lead to some psychological issues, its cause it probably did and I’ll touch on those one of my following posts). His mother and father worked for a stage acting company that his grandmother actually managed. Peter was born for the stage it seems and he took full advantage of the time spent around theatre during his youth.
The beginning of his stage work occurred during his teen years while he worked at a theatre operated by his uncle. He was able to interact with performers of all sorts including musicians, actors, and comedians. Comedy might have been Sellers’ greatest talent but the man dipped his toes into other avenues of performance and art. For example, as a young student in grade school he was renowned for his deft ability to draw and impersonate radio celebrities. Additionally, an artist by the name of Joe Daniels actually taught Peter how to play the drums during one of their sets at the theatre his uncle owned and Peter excelled to the point in which he could’ve played professionally if he chose to.
Shortly after his flirtation with the drums began, England became engulfed in the Second World War. While Sellers originally did not enlist in active service he volunteered to entertain the troops on many occasions often dazzling with impressive performances on the drums and also mixing in some excellent comedy for the beleaguered soldiers. Once he turned 18 he joined the Royal Air Force and quickly became a focal member of the Gang Show Entertainment Troupe lead by Squad Leader Ralph Reader. His time in military service brought him to many countries across Europe and Asia which furthered his ability to portray a variety of characters as he would display in his later works.