Ronni Ancona

Ronni Ancona
Born (1968-07-04) 4 July 1968
Troon, Ayrshire, Scotland,
United Kingdom
Occupation Actress, impressionist, author
Children 2 daughters

Veronica "Ronni" Ancona (born 4 July 1968) is a Scottish actress, impressionist and author. She first became well-known as a result of appearing in the BBC's BAFTA award winning[1] The Big Impression alongside Alistair McGowan.

Early life

Ancona was born in Troon, Ayrshire, Scotland and is of English and Italian Jewish descent.[2] Her father was a commander in the Royal Navy and her mother was an artist who painted the sets at the Gaiety Theatre in Ayr.[3] She attended Marr College, a secondary school in Troon. In the programme Comedy Map of Britain she returned to her old school in Troon and talked about her earliest comedy performing experience as part of an improvisation group called Pots People.[4] She made a one-off appearance on Blue Peter in 1986 while she was still at school.[5] She moved to London when 17 to study design at St Martin's, then became a teacher before embarking on stand-up comedy.[6]


Her comedy career started on the comedy circuit and she won the Time Out Hackney Empire New Act of the Year in 1993. For many years she worked extensively in radio and on television shows, such as Fist of Fun, as well as performing stand-up comedy. She also appeared in the first series of The Sketch Show before the The Big Impression.

In 2005 she played Barbara, opposite Bill Nighy, Miranda Richardson and Emily Blunt in Stephen Poliakoff's Gideon's Daughter on BBC One. She has appeared six times on the BBC celebrity panel show QI. She won episode four of series four ('Dictionaries') in October 2006, won again in the first episode of series six in November 2008 ('Family'), won on the women's team with Sandi Toksvig in January 2010, and came last in November 2011 ('Infantile'). In November 2006 she was a guest presenter of Have I Got News For You. She also appeared on the Channel 4 comedy show TV Heaven, Telly Hell discussing her preferences in television shows. In December 2006 she revealed herself as a fan of Strictly Come Dancing and appeared on Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two. In 2007, following a successfully received pilot, the BBC commissioned a new comedy sketch series titled Ronni Ancona & Co consisting of her own material[6] and co-starring Phil Cornwell, Jan Ravens and John Sessions. The show initially aired on 25 May 2007 and had three episodes. In 2008 Ancona appeared in the film Penelope as Wanda. She appeared as the mother of Katie and Emily Fitch in the third and fourth series of Skins. In 2009 she appeared in Hope Springs on BBC 1.[6] She was one of eight main cast members. On 24 July 2009, Ancona appeared on The One Show, and she appeared on it again, with Alistair McGowan, on 16 October 2009. In April 2010, she appeared on A Comedy Roast, celebrating Sharon Osbourne's life. In 2012 she appeared in Last Tango in Halifax as Judith on BBC one. In 2016 She played the role of Care Home Manager At Braemar Care Home In The Seventh Series Of BBC Scotland Comedy Still Game.


On stage she was Beline in Molière's The Hypochondriac at the Almeida Theatre. In June 2015, Ancona will begin playing the role of Paula, in the new West End musical Bend It Like Beckham.[7]


In 2009 her first book A Matter of Life And Death: How To Wean A Man Off Football was published by Faber & Faber.[8] As part of BBC's Big Read she promoted The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.[9]



Title Channel Year
Still Game (Series 7 Episode 6 "Down and Out") BBC One 2016
Citizen Khan (Series 4 Episode 4 "Chicken Shop") BBC One 2015
Father Brown (Series 3, Episode 8 "The Lair of the Libertines") BBC One 2015
Room 101 (Series 4, Episode 1) BBC One 2015
QI (Series L, Episode 11) BBC Two 2014
Last Tango in Halifax (Series I) BBC One 2012
QI (Series I, Episode 11) BBC Two 2011
Shooting Stars (Series 8) BBC Two 2011
Loose Women (Series 16) ITV 1 2011
Midsomer Murders (Series 13, Episode 8) ITV 1 2011
QI (Series H, Episode 15) BBC One 2011
QI (Series G, Episode 7) BBC One 2010
Skins Channel 4 / E4 2009/2010
Bremner, Bird & Fortune Channel 4 2009
Hope Springs BBC 2009
QI (Series F, Episode 1) BBC Two 2008
Ronni Ancona & Co. BBC 2007
Agatha Christie's Marple ITV 2007
Hotel Babylon BBC One 2007
QI (Series D, Episode 4) BBC Four 2006
The Secret Policeman's Ball Channel 4 2006
Gideon's Daughter BBC One 2005
Sven and Nancy's Big Impression BBC One
Posh and Becks' Big Impression (Christmas Special) BBC
The Big Impression (4 series, 3 specials) BBC One 1999–2005 (BAFTA, British Comedy Award, Royal Variety Club Award)
The Key BBC Two 2003
The Big Impression Christmas Special BBC One
The Sketch Show ITV 2001 (BAFTA)
Dr Terrible's House of Horrible BBC Two 2001
Holby City BBC One 2000
Mark Lamarr Leaving 20th Century BBC 2 1999
Comedy Nation BBC 2 1998
Space Cadets Channel 4 1997
Pulp Video BBC 2 1995
Rory Bremner, Who Else? Channel 4 1993
Fist of Fun BBC 2 1995–1996
Scratchy and Co. CITV 1995
The Geeks ITV
The Imaginatively Titled Punt and Dennis Show BBC 1 1994
Ben Elton: The Man from Auntie BBC 1 1994
The Full Monty Granada
Standing Room Only BBC 2 1991
The Comedy Store BBC
Live at Jongleurs ITV
The Staggering Stories of Ferdinand de Bargos BBC 2 1989


Title Year Notes
Penelope 2008 Dir: Mark Polansky
A Cock and Bull Story 2005 Dir: Michael Winterbottom
Stella Street- The Movie 2004 Absolutely Productions
The Calcium Kid 2004 Calcium Films Ltd
The Debt Collector 1999 Channel 4 Films


Title Channel
Life, Death & Sex With Mike & Sue Radio 4
The Alan Davies Show Radio 4
Weekending Radio 4
The Museum of Curiosity Radio 4


Year Title Role Company
1996 Miss Conceptions Edinburgh Festival
2004 Singin' in the Rain Lina Lamont Sadler's Wells Theatre, London
2005 The Hypochondriac Belline Almeida Theatre, London [11]
2014 Little Revolution Jane / various Almeida Theatre [12]
2015 The Tale of Mr Tumble Unsmiling Principle Manchester Opera House [13]


She won a British Comedy Award[14] for The Big Impression and a Variety Club Award.

Personal life

She had a seven-year relationship with Alistair McGowan which ended shortly before they started working together professionally. Ancona is married to Gerard Hall, a consultant rheumatologist[15] with whom she has two daughters. They live in west London.[16]


  1. Television Awards Categories – Television – Awards – The BAFTA site. (7 July 2005). Retrieved on 2011-05-07.
  2. Ellen, Barbara (19 December 2004). "'They don't think I'm the thinking man's crumpet'". London: Guardian Unlimited. Retrieved 5 April 2016.
  3. "Interview: A fresh wave of success beckons for Ronni Ancona". The Scotsman. 29 May 2009.
  4. "Episode 6 Belfast to Glasgow". The Comedy Map of Britain.
  5. BBC 1, 2007, Comedy Map of Britain, episode 1.6
  6. 1 2 3 "Interview: A fresh wave of success beckons for Ronni Ancona".
  7. "West End's Bend It Like Beckham Musical Casts Its Complete Team". Playbill. 9 January 2015. Retrieved 9 January 2015.
  8. Faber & Faber : Ronni Ancona. Retrieved on 2011-05-07.
  9. "Book Champions". The Big Read. Retrieved 13 October 2007.
  10. 1 2 Ronni Ancona at the Internet Movie Database
  11. "Don't get the wrong impression about her". Retrieved 20 September 2014.
  12. "Cast, Little Revolution, Almeida Theatre". Retrieved 20 September 2014.
  13. "The Tale of Mr Tumble, Manchester Opera House". Retrieved 16 November 2015.
  14. "Past Winners 2003". British Comedy Awards. Archived from the original on 2008-08-20.
  15. Ben Spencer (7 April 2011). "Ronni Ancona: How my heart still aches over stillborn Seth". dailyrecord.
  16. "How We Met: Ronni Ancona & Alistair McGowan". The Independent. London. 20 July 2008.
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