This page uses content from the Lalla Ward biography page on the English version of Wikipedia and is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. This list of authors can be seen in the page history. Rotten Tomatoes disclaims any and all warranties as to the accuracy or reliability of the content.
Lalla Ward (born Sarah Ward, June 28, 1951) is an English actress and illustrator best known for playing the part of Romana in the BBC science fiction television series Doctor Who.
The daughter of Edward Ward, the 7th Viscount Bangor, and his fourth wife Marjorie Alice Banks. She has a brother, Edward, two years her junior, and a half-brother, William, who is the 8th Viscount Bangor, and three years her senior.
She is descended from George Plantagenet, 1st Duke of Clarence, brother of Edward IV, via John Mordaunt, 1st Earl of Peterborough, John, 1st Viscount Mordaunt, and Bernard Ward, 1st Viscount Bangor.
She attended the Central School of Speech and Drama in London. Her stage name, "Lalla", comes from her attempts as a toddler to pronounce her own name. She began her acting career in the Hammer horror film Vampire Circus, and played the teenage daughter of The Duchess of Duke Street in the popular BBC drama series of the 1970s. In 1980, she played Ophelia to Derek Jacobi's Hamlet in the BBC television production. She was the second actress to play the Time Lady Romana. She was chosen to replace Mary Tamm in the part, after a guest appearance in another part in the Doctor Who story The Armageddon Factor in 1979.
Following her exit from the series in 1981, she married her co-star, actor Tom Baker, that December, but the marriage lasted only sixteen months. Douglas Adams, who worked with her on Doctor Who, introduced her to his friend Richard Dawkins, biologist and author of such books as The Selfish Gene and The Blind Watchmaker, whom he had met after Dawkins sent him a fan letter. They met at Adams' fortieth birthday party in 1992 â?? according to Adams they were the only guests who turned up on time and hence were obliged to speak to each other. She married Dawkins the same year. She illustrates his books and also wrote two books on knitting in the 1980s, and one on embroidery. She created the 1985 Shell Calendar, with embroidered pictures of sea birds.
Ward has seldom appeared on screen since her marriage to Dawkins. However, she has reprised the character of Romana in the 1993 charity special Dimensions in Time, the 2003 webcast version of Shada, and in several Doctor Who and Gallifrey audio plays produced by Big Finish Productions. She has also recorded audio books, including Steven Pinker's The Language Instinct and Dawkins' The Ancestor's Tale, in which she co-narrates with her husband.
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