William began his career acting and directing in his native Britain, for such companies at the Old Vic, and was artistic director of the New Shakespeare Company, which performed at the Open Air Theatre from 1962-1968.
In 1966, he traveled to Canada's Stratford Shakepseare Festival, where he helmed a production of Twelfth Night, featuring a young Martha Henry as Viola. He moved to Canada in 1968 and continued to direct at Stratford, including notable productions of Volpone and King Lear, and was the Festival's artistic director from 1990 to 1993.
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