During the 1930s toured Britain and acted in Australia and then, prior to the Second World War, spent four years in Hollywood.
Left Hurstpierpoint College at sixteen and moved into repertory, touring Shakespeare and a season with an English company in South Africa.
Made his London debut playing the King in the 1931 revival of "The Windmill Man" at the Victoria Palace.
Served In The Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) during the Second World War.
Son of Bert Coote, who wrote the popular children's play, The Windmill Man.
Was nominated for Broadway's 1957 Tony Award as Best Supporting Actor (Musical) for "My Fair Lady," for his performance as Colonel Pickering, a role he created in the original Broadway production (1956-1962) and reprised in the Broadway revival (1976-1977).