DILLIE KEANE – BIOGRAPHY
Dillie studied music at Trinity College, Dublin, and went on to complete the 3-year acting course at LAMDA. A burgeoning acting career was hijacked by the extraordinary success of Fascinating Aïda which started in a wine bar in West End Lane in 1983 with Marilyn Cutts and Lizzie Richardson. When Adèle Anderson joined in 1984, she found her great writing partner.
With Fascinating Aïda, Dillie has toured the UK for the greater part of 35 years, the most recent shows being Charm Offensive, Cheap Flights and Absolutely Fascinating. They have played five West End seasons - 2003 in One Last Flutter at the Comedy Theatre; 1999 in Barefaced Chic at the Theatre Royal, Haymarket; 1997 in It, Wit, Don’t Give A Shit Girls at the Vaudeville; 1994-5 at The Garrick and subsequently Apollo Theatres; and in 1987 at the Piccadilly – and most recently several times at the South Bank Centre.
Dillie has appeared with Fascinating Aïda all around the world - at Theatre Row on 42nd Street, New York; at the 59E59 Theater in New York; Raffles Hotel in Singapore; the Bar Jeder Vernunft in Berlin; Hemingways Resort in Kenya; two seasons at the Firebird Cafe and one at the Ballroom, West 28th Street, in New York, plus an appearance at the New York Cabaret Convention; three tours of Australia, including a month at the Sydney Opera House; the Arts Festival in Wellington, New Zealand; and a season at the Mason Street Theater in San Francisco.
Dillie's first one-woman show, Single Again (1991) was a sell-out success and was nominated for a Perrier Award. She subsequently toured on her own again in Citizen Keane (1992) and then in 1999 in Back With You, touring the show in the UK and Germany and winning the Best Comedy Award at the Moers Comedy Festival in 2001. In the Summer of 2001, Back With You performed a sell-out season at Pizza on the Park in London, at the Edinburgh Festival and the New York Cabaret Convention, and in January 2002 played a West End season at the Arts Theatre. Dillie's new one-woman show Hello, Dillie! toured the UK in February, March and April 2017.
In 2002, Dillie wrote the songs for a new musical comedy by Sandi Toksvig, Big Night Out at the Little Palace Theatre, which she starred in at the Palace Theatre, Watford, alongside Sandi and Bonnie Langford – the show broke all box-office records.
Other acting parts include Maggie in Dancing at Lughnasa on tour; Bessie Burgess in The Plough and The Stars at the West Yorkshire Playhouse, Leeds; Juno in Juno and the Paycock at the Leicester Haymarket; Eva in Accommodating Eva at the King's Head Theatre, Islington; Monica in Present Laughter at Birmingham Repertory Theatre and Donna Lucia in the national tour of Charley's Aunt with Eric Sykes. She appeared in the premiere production of The Vagina Monologues in Dublin in 2002, and played an Ugly Sister opposite Adele Anderson in Cinderella at the Queen's Theatre, Barnstaple. Dillie toured in Tomfoolery and later Cowardy Custard, both times starring alongside Kit and The Widow; as The Duchess in Me and My Girl on tour; and in the pantomime Snow White and the Seven Dwarves at the Hall for Cornwall, Truro. Dillie toured in Grumpy Old Women both in the UK and Australia, played Lady Bracknell in The Importance of Being Earnest in Dublin, and toured in the one-woman play My Brilliant Divorce.
She appeared as Madame Armfeld in A Little Night Music at the Watermill Theatre, Newbury (July-September 2017) and as herself in Grumpy Old Women To The Rescue in 2018, which was met with critical acclaim!
On television she has appeared in Pie in the Sky; hosted a BBC pilot Truly, Madly, Weekly, as well as numerous guest appearances in programmes such as Me And My Girl as Phil's sidekick in the Phil Cool series, Did You See?, The Truth About Women and Grumpy Old Women for BBC2. Film credits include Deadly Advice and To Die For.
- Columnist on The Stage and the Mail on Sunday (1993-5)
- 9 years of writing the songs for Stop The Week 1983-92
- 5 years of writing regularly for 4th Column
- Co-wrote and presented Call Me When You're in Something
- Many appearances in the Sony Award nominated show Booked!
- The Joy of Sequins - the Fascinating Aïda Songbook (1995)
- Fascinating Who? (1985)
- A Slice of Life - performed at the King's Head Theatre 1981
- Boat People - tour of Ireland 1983
- Big Night Out at the Little Palace Theatre by Sandi Toksvig
with songs by Dillie Keane
- 2 songs specially commissioned and performed in The Shakespeare Revue at the Vaudeville Theatre and subsequently on many tours.
City Limits Most Popular Entertainment 1985 (FA)
Sony Award (Radio) for Call Me When You’re in Something documentary for Radio 1990
Moers Comedy Award 2001 Best Comedy
Herald Little Devil Award 2016 for carrying on in spite of everything. Tsk.
Perrier Award 1984 (FA)
Perrier Award 1989 (Solo)
Olivier Award Best Entertainment 1995 (FA)
Olivier Award Best Entertainment 2000 (FA)
Olivier Award Best Entertainment 2004(FA)
Drama Desk Best Entertainment 2005 (FA)
Drama Desk 2010 Outstanding Lyrics (Dillie Keane & Adèle Anderson)
Drama Desk 2010 Oustanding Musical Review (FA)
Manchester Evening Standard Best Actress 1990 (solo)
The Stage Best Actress 2009 (solo)
The Stage Best Actress (solo)
Drama Desk 2017 Outstanding Review (solo)
For more information about Dillie Keane, visit the Fascinating Aïda website: