Суббота, 21 Апреля, 2018

TV satirist John Clarke dead at 68

Paul Keating John Clarke at the after party for Keating the musical in Melbourne TV satirist John Clarke dead at 68
Doris Mccormick | 11 Апреля, 2017, 00:25

He died on Sunday aged 68 while hiking in a national park, an Australian Broadcasting Corp spokesman said. He died from natural causes.

John Clarke's passing means today Australia is a little less informed, our politicians a little safer from ridicule, and the world a lot less amusing.

Max Gillies, for whom Clarke wrote The Gillies Report in 1984, said his friend and colleague had "an incalculable gift" for comedy.

"He was a wonderful man".

That weekly satirical segment at GTV 9 was wildly popular and ran between 1989 and 1996 before migrating to the ABC's 7.30 Report, where satirised the nation's politicians with his comedy partner Bryan Dawe for more than 20 years.

After settling in Melbourne, Clarke became such a hit on Australian television that cross-dressing comic Barry Humphries described Clarke as "Australia's best humourist".

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Clarke was born in 1948 in New Zealand and first rose to fame for creating the character Fred Dagg, a country bloke who wore a black singlet, shorts and gumboots and had seven sons - all named Trevor. "John wasn't just amusing, he was original and he was very, very nice", Humphries said. "I am sorry. We are sorry", the actor John Howard says on the show. "From the first time I heard a Fred Dagg cassette to this week's Clarke and Dawe, John Clarke made me laugh. Whatever that middle ground is, John Clarke deserved the Nobel Prize".

Clarke was born in New Zealand but made his name as a comedian and political satirist in Australia after arriving in the 1970s. "And his work with Bryan Dawe over decades has been as good as anything put to air anywhere in the world".

RIP John Clarke. Hugely influential to me and my mates, he was one of the fathers of NZ's style of comedy.

That interview celebrated the dynamic duo's 20 straight years of their beloved weekly sketch - where Dawe played the flummoxed journalist who "interviews" Clarke's insane political figures.

John Clarke as Fred Dagg. He gave more to others than they gave back to him. Publications included A Complete Dagg in 1989, The Complete Book of Australian Verse in 1989 and Great Interviews of the 20th Century in 1990.

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