Gary Wilmot Biography
Although Gary was born into showbiz (his Father was the Bass voice that sang the unforgettable line “I Am A Mole And I Live In A Hole”), he had no early ambitions for the stage. However, he had always shown a talent to entertain and so with encouragement from those around him, he took his first step on the road to stardom. Innumerable guest appearances on television culminated in several of his own TV series gaining him a national ‘star profile’.
He played the role to critical acclaim for two years, the late Jack Tinker describing him as a “Musical Talent of the Highest Order”.
A successful No.1 theatre tour of a new comedy, ‘Teething Troubles’ followed, earning him further critical acclaim. He also directed a workshop production of this play.
With direction by Simon Callow, Gary’s next role was that of Joe in the award winning ‘Carmen Jones’ (Old Vic). The role highlighted his dramatic and vocal talents earning him further acclaim. Following ‘Carmen Jones’ and by popular demand, Gary starred in the first sell out national tour of ‘Me And My Girl’ which earned him a best actor nomination.
That same year he recorded a one-hour TV special for the BBC – ‘Showstoppers’.
On airing the BBC switchboard was inundated with calls for more, and Gary was invited to record a further series of six TV spectaculars with the BBC Concert Orchestra and many national and international guest stars. He also starred in and directed a tour of ‘Showstoppers’ which proved so popular that its original 60 dates, were increased to 160.
Finishing the run of ‘Copa’, Gary received a special invitation to recreate his role in ‘Me And My Girl’ for the final tour of this great show.
In 1997 Gary created the role of Elliot Garfield in ‘The Goodbye Girl’ by Neil Simon, Marvin Hamlisch, David Zippell and Don Black.
Gary received his usual complement of superb notices and took the show on the road in 1998. Ground breaking as ever, he ended 1998 with yet another successful characterisation - Fagin in the Cameron Mackintosh production of ‘Oliver’, touring through spring and summer 1999.
Gary spent a highly successful period at the Bristol Old Vic (and touring) in Willy Russell’s play ‘One For The Road’ and starred in the concert tour of ‘Music To Watch Girls By’ singing, in his own inimitable style.
Next a No 1 Tour of Alan Ayckbourn’s ‘Confusions’.
In 2001 Gary joined The New Shakespeare Company to play the role of Bottom in ‘A_Midsummer_Night’s_Dream’ (Open Air Theatre Regent’s Park) and the Pirate King in ‘Pirates of Penzance.’
Gary spent most of 2003/4 occupying the No.1 dressing room at The London Palladium, where he was starring in the record breaking ‘Chitty_Chitty_Bang_Bang’ and ending the year with his own national concert tour ‘My-Kind_Of_Music’ taking him to major concert venues throughout the country.
In the summer, he was invited back to The Open Air Theatre to play Dauntless Dick Deadeye in ‘H.M.S_Pinafore’ and the 2005 Christmas season saw him starring in ‘Santa Claus the Musical’ at The Mayflower, Southampton.
In the summer of 2008, Gary played the Lion in The Festival Theatre's The Wizard of Oz and ended the year with a great run in Manchester as the show stopping Smee in Peter Pan.
2009 was an exciting year as Gary starred in the national tour of ‘Chicago’ playing the role of Billy Flynn, the lawyer and a Xmas run of ‘The Invisible Man’, at the Chocolate Factory. Lord Arthur Saville's Crime toured nationally with Gary starring as Septimus Podgers and after a short run at Newbury, ‘Radio Times’ went on to tour nationally with Gary starring as the lead comic role to critical acclaim. In 2013, Gary played Dame for the first time at the Birmingham Hippodrome to packed houses and rave reviews. A run of westend shows continued, The Pajama Game, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels and Wind in the Willows. After another panto at the Palladium, 2019 includes a run of Mr Gum and the dancing bear at the National, and Goldilocks back at the Palladium.
Gary’s solo Albums include ‘Love Situation’, ‘The Album’ Recorded at the historic Abbey Road Studio with the London Symphony Orchestra and ‘Double Standards’ he describes as an album of jazz classics past, present and future.