PASSINGS: Margaret Tyzack

Margaret Tyzack

British actress on stage, screen and television

Margaret Tyzack, 79, a British actress perhaps best known to American audiences for her roles in the acclaimed BBC television series “The Forsyte Saga” and “I, Claudius,” died Saturday in London, her agent said in a statement. The cause was not given.

A veteran of stage, screen and television, Tyzack won a Tony Award as Lotte Schoen opposite Maggie Smith in a 1990 Broadway production of Peter Shaffer’s “Lettice and Lovage.”


She was nominated for another Tony for playing the Countess of Rousillon in “All’s Well That Ends Well” on Broadway in 1983.

In London, she received Laurence Olivier awards for her acting in “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” (1981) and “The Chalk Garden” (2009).

Tyzack gained fame as Winifred, sister of the main character Soames, in “The Forsyte Saga,” the 26-part adaptation of John Galsworthy’s novel that was broadcast by the BBC in 1967 and by PBS in the United States in 1969.

She later had a key role in “I, Claudius,” playing Antonia, mother of Derek Jacobi’s Emperor Claudius, in the 1976 BBC miniseries shown by PBS in 1977.

Among her other roles in dramatic TV productions was the title role in 1971’s “Cousin Bette,” which also featured Helen Mirren.

Among Tyzack’s film credits are Stanley Kubrick’s “2001: A Space Odyssey” and “A Clockwork Orange” and Woody Allen’s “Match Point” and “Scoop.”

Born Sept. 9, 1931, Tyzack grew up in Essex, east of London. She studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and honed her craft in an English repertory company.

-- Los Angeles Times staff and wire reports