John Clarke is interviewed by Bryan Dawe in one of their satirical mock interviews for Australian television. These address topical issues – in this case a 1991 oil-tanker mishap off the coast of Australia.
Born in Palmerston North in 1948, John Clarke attended Victoria University of Wellington, and wrote and performed in stage shows there and at Downstage Theatre. After a period in London, he returned to New Zealand in 1973 and invented the comic persona of Fred Dagg, which was an immediate hit. As Dagg, a gumboot- and black-singlet-wearing farmer with a deadpan delivery, he appeared in current affairs shows, television specials and a short film, as well as releasing songs and books. Frustrated by New Zealand's conservative broadcasting administration, Clarke left for Australia in 1977. There he made an impact writing and performing satirical material on radio and television. He also made his name as an award-winning dramatist, an actor and a writer of books.
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