David Case, 73; Actor Was the Voice of Hundreds of Books on Audiotape

From Times Staff and Wire Reports

David Case, 73, a classically trained actor who recorded more than 700 books on audiotape, died Oct. 1 at his home in El Sobrante, Calif.

The London-born actor's two-decade recording career largely ended in 2000 when he developed throat cancer. Case, who refused to give up cigarettes, had a relapse earlier this year that resulted in the removal of his larynx.

Case was considered among the finest "readers" in the $800-million audiotape business. He read modern works such as Nick Hornby's "High Fidelity" but was known for excelling at British parts. That included recording 13 novels by Anthony Trollope, 36 by P.G. Wodehouse and the entire "Forsyte" chronicles by John Galsworthy.

The actor, who was primarily associated with Books on Tape and Blackstone Audiobooks (as Frederick Davidson), was one of the first inductees into a hall of fame started by the trade publication AudioFile.

Born in 1932, he won a voice scholarship to a private school in Oxford. After compulsory army service, he attended the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. He settled in the San Francisco area in the mid-1970s and ran an antique importing business with his late companion, Graham Watts.

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