"I simply regard him as one of the best actors in Britain." The Guardian theatre critic Michael Billington
"This book should be read by anyone who likes the theatre." Director and actor Peter Eyre.
In a post card, Rigby wrote to Juliet: "Have you made much headway with the scandalizing version of my biography? I've certainly started on yours." But as director and critic Ned Chaillet notes in his foreword, "Juliet Ace has written much more than a 'scandalizing' life of the wonderfully memorable and professionally esteemed actor that was Terence Rigby "
He was one of Harold Pinter's favourite actors - memorably creating Joey in The Homecoming and Briggs in No Man's Land - and Terence Rigby's television work ranged from the dog-handler Sergeant Snow in the police series Softly Softly to the rough-hewn spy Roy Bland in the great Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy with Alec Guinness. His performance as the newly created character Albert the Horse in Alan Bennett's version of The Wind in the Willows at the Royal National Theatre was widely praised and gave voice to Rigby's deadpan humour in his native Brummie accent. But this very public and exuberant actor retained a deeply private life, a mystery even to the agent who served him throughout most of his career.
In her biographical memoir of Terence Rigby the dramatist Juliet Ace offers a rare glimpse into his private world while exploring his work and artistic process. It is a picture of an actor's life that is at once intimate and professionally revealing, ranging from the privacy of repeated encounters over Juliet's kitchen table to the memories of his contemporaries and colleagues, ranging from Peter Hall and Michael Gambon to fellow students from his RADA days, spiced by Rigby's own notes and letters.
"Terence Rigby would be astonished by the sight of himself, I think ... His shade, and his memory, have been fortunate in their chronicler. [Rigby's] almost threatening contradictions speak throughout the whole narrative - no wonder he got on so well with Pinter - but always in a strange harmony with his lovable qualities. As an account of the complexities that can beset an acting life, it's unparalleled, I think. And the way that the bones of the book are allowed to show through, in the progress of its compilation, seems absolutely right. Surely it is destined to be a 'real' book, rather than a virtual book. The sheer solidity of Rigby requires hard covers." Critic and broadcaster Russell Davies.