Stage ready pensioner nominated for Merton Civic Award
An 88-year-old theatrical performer has been nominated for a Merton Civic Award for her contribution to arts and entertainment.
Thelma Ruby, who has performed with Dame Judi Dench and Orson Welles, has lived in Wimbledon for more than 50 years and trained to be an actress in New York during World War II.
She has performed at an annual event for the Wimbledon Guild, a charity which cares for elderly people, for the past seven years.
She said: “I performed there in September, they do a lovely luncheon every year with a performance, and this year we were joined by the mayor.”
During her life she has had many career highlights, including performing with Dame Judi Dench in the musical Cabaret at The Palace Theatre, in Covent Garden.
She said: “[Dame Judi] is absolutely incredible and is just a wonderful partner on stage. She is a very special lady.”
Acting with Orson Welles in his adaptation of Shakespeare’s Henry IV was another highlight.
She has played the part of the mother in Fiddler on the Roof four times, which she says is a wonderful musical, and she speaks of it in her one-woman show.
She was the first president of the Friends of Wimbledon Theatre.
She said: “I was known as the fighting first president, as I campaigned to get better productions coming to the theatre. And I succeeded.”
Thelma Ruby was nominated in the arts and entertainment category of the 2014 Merton Civic Awards.
Visit the Merton Civic Awards page for more information, including about how to how to nominate someone.
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