Kenneth Barnes

Sir Kenneth Ralph Barnes (11 September 1878 16 October 1957) was director of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) in London, from 1909-55.

Born at Heavitree, near Exeter, one of six siblings, his sisters, Irene and Violet became actresses.

In 1921 he instigated the building of a new theatre for RADA which was totally demolished by bombing in 1941. A new Vanbrugh Theatre was opened by Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother in 1954 shortly before Sir Kenneth's retirement. He was knighted in 1938.[1]


  1. Profile of Sir Kenneth Barnes,; accessed 17 March 2017.
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