The first, authorised biography of the anarchic comic genius, much cherished for his performances on stage and screen. Book of the Week on BBC Radio 4. Ken Campbell (1941-2008) was a one-man whirlwind who tore through the British theatre establishment using well-rehearsed anarchy and a genius for surreal comedy. Starting out in rep at Stoke-on-Trent, he founded the Ken Campbell Road Show, whose members included the then-unknown Bob Hoskins and Sylvester McCoy, and which toured pubs and clubs with dramatised urban myths and shaggy-dog stories. His later shows included Illuminatus! the first show at the National Theatre s studio and the 22-hour The Warp, the longest play in the world. On television he played corrupt lawyer Alex Gladwell in the 1970s series Law and Order, and was Alf Garnett s neighbour Fred Johnson in the sitcom In Sickness and in Health. He later found a devoted audience with his mesmerising one-man shows, which he toured worldwide. Theatre critic Michael Coveney was given unrestricted access to Campbell's letters, notebooks and original scripts. From these and from interviews with Campbell's many devoted/bemused collaborators, he has chronicled the life of the anarchic and uncompromising genius that was Ken Campbell. Alternately inspiring and jaw-dropping, The Great Caper is the story of a unique and inimitable talent in British theatre.