British Superstars Dead at 69.

When I finally heard the news…

I thought, what are the odds? Two of the greatest superstars dead at 69 years old, both from cancer. David Bowie succumbed to liver cancer at 69 years old. Alan Rickman succumbed to cancer, also at 69 years old.

David Bowie, as Ziggy Stardust: The Man and the Musician.

David Bowie was a multi-talented figure. He was an English singer, a songwriter, a record producer, a musician, a painter, and an actor. He was a figure in popular music for over five decades. He was also seen as an innovator in the eyes of critics and other musicians alike, particularly for his work in the 1970s.

david-bowie-ziggy-stardust

Born and raised as David Robert Jones on 8 January 1947 in Brixton, England, Bowie had developed a taste and interest in music while he was educated at the Burnt Ash junior school and showed an aptitude in singing and playing the recorder. He left school to study art, music and design, and soon became proficient on the saxophone, and eventually formed his first band that same year at the tender age of 15. In 1963, he began his journey as a musician as his professional career, and received his first management contract thereafter. After a period of experimentation, he returned in 1972 during the glam rock era with his flamboyant and androgynous alterego, Ziggy Stardust. Despite being relatively short-lived, his Ziggy persona proved to be one part of his career that was marked by reinvention, musical innovation, and visual presentation. David Bowie’s impact was so huge that he changed the nature of rock music, and even changed his own approach to it repeatedly. Throughout his career, he sold an estimated 140 million records worldwide. Bowie was awarded 9 platinum album certifications, 11 gold, and 8 silver in the UK. He was also awarded 5 platinum and 7 gold certifications in the US. To call him a superstar was already an understatement. In 1996, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. After 2004, however, Bowie stopped concert touring but performed live at a charity event in 2006. In 2013, he returned from a decade-long recording hiatus and remained musically active until his death from liver cancer on 10 January 2016.

Source: David Bowie (Wikipedia)

A few days later…

My husband showed me a news link on his mobile phone that headlined the passing of British actor Alan Rickman, on 14 January 2016.

Alan Rickman, The Thespian: After All This Time? Always.

Alan Rickman will always and forever be remembered as Professor Severus Snape. The professor whom I thought was evil at first but turned out to be one of the good guys in disguise. Professor Snape juggled a love-hate relationship with Harry Potter and the young wizard’s deceased parents while maintaining his membership in the Order of the Phoenix.

alan-rickman-professor-severus-snape-harry-potter

Alan Rickman was born on 21 February 1946 in Acton, England to a housewife and a factory worker. He was an English actor and a former member of the Royal Shakespeare Company in modern and classical theatre productions. His acting career began with his role as the Vicomte de Valmont in the play ‘Les Liaisons Dangereuses‘, and was nominated for a Tony Award. He was known for his performances as Hans Gruber in ‘Die Hard‘, Sheriff of Nottingham in ‘Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves‘, and Severus Snape in the ‘Harry Potter‘ film series. He was only ever married once, to Rima Horton in 2012.

He had attended the Derwentwater Primary School in Acton, a school that followed the Montessori method of education, where he excelled in calligraphy and watercolour painting. When he was eight, his father passed away, leaving his mother to raise him and his siblings on her own. She remarried but the union did not last long as she divorced his stepfather three years after the marriage. He then won a scholarship from Derwentwater Primary School to attend the Latymer Upper School in London, where he became involved in drama. After leaving Latymer, he attended the Chelsea College of Art and Design before moving on on to the Royal College of Art. His education allowed him to work as a graphic designer for the radical newspaper, the Notting Hill Herald, which he saw it as a more stable occupation than acting. Upon graduating, Rickman and his friends opened a graphic design studio called Graphiti, but after three years of success, he decided that if he wanted to pursue professional acting, it was now or never. So he wrote to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) and was awarded a place there after requesting for an audition. He attended RADA for two years, from 1972 to 1974, where he studied Shakespeare’s works and supported himself by working as a dresser for Nigel Hawthorne and Sir Ralph Richardson. He left RADA after winning several prizes, including the Emile Littler Prize, the Forbes Robertson Prize, and the Bancroft Gold Medal. Throughout his acting career, he was no stranger to receiving acknowledgement for his hard work. In 1995, he was awarded the Golden Globe, Emmy Award and Screen Actors Guild Award for his portrayal of Rasputin in ‘Rasputin: Dark Servant of Destiny‘.

Source: Alan Rickman (Wikipedia)

It’s a shame. Why do all the good guys have to go and leave us alone with the bad guys?

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