Sir Ken Dodd – The Master of Mirth
The Master of Mirth, and one of the greatest of men, Sir Ken Dodd is a Legend, a founding member of Friends of The Grand and a huge supporter of the arts.
Kenneth Arthur Dodd was born on 8 November 1927 in the Liverpool suburb of Knotty Ash, the son of a coal merchant.
Ken’s first appearance in Blackpool was with Rocking With Laughter at the Hippodrome, Blackpool, September 4 1957. His first appearance at Blackpool’s Grand Theatre was in 1978 when he made a special one-night appearance to raise money for the Friends of The Grand on March 29.
Ken said, ‘I love Blackpool and I would love to play et The Grand which is the ideal size for a theatre.’ He added ‘I am prepared to be its first customer and would lease the theatre for the summer should the Friends Manage to buy it.’
Ruth Eastwood, Chief Executive of Blackpool’s Grand Theatre said ‘Ken wasn’t just a performer at the Grand Theatre, he was a huge supporter of the venue, giving his time and talent to helping raise the funds to save the theatre from demolition, back in the 1970s and then, every year since the theatre re-opened, he’s performed on our stage.
‘The thing that I will always remember about Ken was his huge generosity. He would meet and talk to fans before and after every show, signing autographs and sharing memories into the early hours of the morning. He was a proper star and he will be very sadly missed.’
Rest In Peace Sir Ken OBE