Gar·rick (găr'ĭk) , David 1717–1779.
British actor and theater manager who was considered the foremost Shakespearean player of his time.
Garrick, David (1717-79). Actor. Reared in Lichfield, he accompanied Johnson to London (1737), but soon abandoned law studies for the wine trade; the appeal of acting and overnight success as Richard III(1741) led to further change. Having purchased a share of Drury Lane's lease, he set about reforming plays, players, and audiences, with modifications to theatre layout, stage design, and eventual introduction of concealed lighting. A devotion to Shakespeare induced textual reclamation from the Restoration adaptations, not always creditably, and his cherished Shakespeare Jubilee at Stratford-upon-Avon (1769) was washed out.
- A monument to Garrick in Lichfield Cathedral bears Johnson's famous comment:
"I am disappointed by that stroke of death that has eclipsed the gaiety of nations, and impoverished the public stock of harmless pleasure."
Wikipedia article "David Garrick".