Happy birthday Alex Kingston!

Alex Kingston in New York in 2011
Alex Kingston in New York in 2011

Alexandra Elizabeth “Alex” Kingston (photo ©methodshop.com) was born on March 11, 1963 in Epson, Surrey, England. Her mother is German so she speaks German.

Alex Kingston’s uncle, Walter Renneisen, is an actor and Alex’s older sister, Nicola, has been an actress. However, Alex was inspired to pursue acting by her teachers at Rosebery School for Girls. She was just a teenager when she appeared in some episodes of the TV show “Grange Hill” and later in other British productions.

Alex Kingston attended the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and later worked for the Royal Shakespeare Company in many stage productions. Over the years she has had various parts in movies too, working with directors such as Peter Greenaway in the movie “The Cook, the Thief, His Wife and Her Lover” and in critically acclaimed movies such as “Carrington”.

The great fame for Alex Kingston came in 1997, when she joined the cast of the American TV show “ER”. Her character, Dr. Elizabeth Corday, a British surgeon, remained in the show for more than seven seasons and returned for two episodes in the fifteenth season including the series finale. In one episode, her real-life daughter played her character’s daughter.

In 2008, Alex Kingston made her debut in “Doctor Who” playing River Song. While not a regular character in the show, she’s really important because she’s the Doctor’s wife and it turns out that she’s the daughter of Amy Pond and Rory Williams, two companions of the Eleventh Doctor. Her relationship with the Doctor is complicated because their meetings are temporally out of phase so River Song died at the end of her first appearance alongside the Tenth Doctor but she appeared several more times alongside the Eleventh Doctor. In 2010 she was voted Best Supporting Actress by readers of “Doctor Who Magazine”.

Over the years, Alex Kingston has participated in many other television and movie productions and. In 2009 and 2010 she had a part in some episodes of “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” playing a character named Miranda Pond. This is curious because River Song’s real name is Melody Pond but this was revealed only in a “Doctor Who” episode aired in 2011.

Alex Kingston has been married to actor Ralph Fiennes from 1993 to 1997. In 1998 she married German writer and journalist Florian Haertel and they had a daughter in 2001, Salome Violetta Haertel.

This year, Alex Kingston appeared in the new series “Arrow” together with John Barrowman, another “Doctor Who” veteran. We don’t know if she’ll appear again in “Doctor Who” but the fans are hoping so because River Song has become very quickly a beloved character and her catchprase “Hello, Sweetie!” she uses to greet the Doctor has become one of the favourite within the fandom.

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