Lionel Blair has been one of England’s most popular celebrities for over five decades. Born in Canada, his family moved to England when he was a baby and he spent his childhood in Tottenham. Aged 14, he made his first appearance on the West End stage in the play Watch On The Rhine and his career has never stopped progressing: from dancer to choreographer to television presenter, director and actor, covering the entire sphere of the business.
His many television appearances include being captain of the men’s team on Give Us A Clue, hosting shows of the calibre of Name That Tune, Saturday Night Royal and many others. He choreographed and appeared in innumerable TV shows starring with artists like Anthony Newley, Peggy Lee and Ella Fitzgerald, Liza Minnelli with a very special command performance in a duet with his friend Sammy Davis jnr. He appeared in several Royal command performances, Sunday Night at the Palladium and many Saturday Spectaculars. Lionel also appeared in The Beatles’ TV special and in the film A Hard Day’s Night. Most recently, he appeared in twelve episodes of Crossroads, and has just finished filming a second series of a comedy sketch show, Revolver, for BBC Scotland (the first series was shown on BBC Choice last year with great success) and innumerable TV commercials. Lionel has made three Line Dancing Videos, which have proved to be a great success, he also hosted a Line Dance Extravaganza in Disneyland Paris.
Lionel’s West End musical appearances include Lady Be Good at the Saville Theatre, Mr Cinders at the Fortune and more recently the award winning musical Pageant at the Vaudeville. He is also an accomplished straight actor starring in Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead at the Piccadilly Theatre, a lengthy tour of Who Killed Agatha Christie for which he received national critical acclaim. His most recent West End engagement was a triumphant performance of the Child Catcher in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang at the London Palladium for a year.
Having been born in Canada, Lionel was very much at home when he directed and starred there for seven years in pantomime. The catchphrase which was used was ‘If Lionel Blair’s here, it must be Xmas as the Pied Piper of Toronto is back’. Not to mention over thirty years starring in panto all over Great Britain.
Lionel has toured the UK as the host of the wonderfully successful show ‘Simply Ballroom’
And took the show to Dubai, where it was a great success.
In 2010 Lionel appeared in the TV series ‘The Young Ones’, which was a successful reality programme related to ageing.
Lionel ‘s one man show ‘Tap and Chat’ is booked regularly on P & O Cruises. And recently was at the Matcham Theatre – Live at The Hippodrome, Leicester Square.
Lionel is an Ambassador for Churchill Homes.
Lionel has recently finished the shooting of the film version of Ray Cooney’s ‘Run for your Wife’.
Finally, another string to his bow – Lionel has recorded an album of songs made famous by his idol Fred Astaire. The album Blair Sings Astaire proves that great songs will always be great songs.
Lionel has recently celebrated 45 years of married life with Susan. They have 3 children and 3 grandchildren