John Clarke, Australian Comedian, Writer, And Satirist Dead At 68

Ausiliatrice Cristiano
Aprile 19, 2017

John was a comedian, writer and satirist who first became known in New Zealand during the mid to late 1970s for portraying laconic farmer Fred Dagg.

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

For many years, he has been known for Clarke and Dawe, a series in which Bryan Dawe plays the straight man interviewing Clarke as he takes the position of politician or pundit or - most recently - a weather forecaster reporting on Cyclone Malcolm.

His mockumentary series The Games, satirising the organisation of the 2000 Sydney Olympics, was watched and loved by millions in Australia and overseas.

Federal Opposition Leader Bill Shorten said Australian TV would "never be the same", while Greens leader Richard Di Natale called him a leading light of satire.

John Clarke was born in New Zealand, and lived in Australia since the late 1970's.

ABC MD Michelle Guthrie said that Australians had relied on Clarke for tearing down the "hypocrisy and at times absurdity" of the national debate. Beloved husband of Helen, father of Lorin and Lucia, grandfather of Claudia and Charles and father-in-law of Stewart Thorn.

Having mastered the language of Australian politics so well, Clarke could inhabit any politician in existence while maintaining his dry, sardonic repose.

- Jane Kennedy (@Jane_L_Kennedy) Shocked and saddened that John Clarke, a wise and amusing man, has left us. "He is forever in our hearts", Clarke's family said.

From Ben Knight, who produced the Clarke and Dawe show on the ABC, to his bush-walking and dining mates in Melbourne, a recurring theme in their comments about Clarke is how his own life was a star turn in itself. "Let the world know and understand, that it is with this sorrow, that we as a nation will grow and seek a better, a fairer and a wiser future".

"Last year Tom Gleeson and I recorded a tribute to Clarke and Dawe simply as a thank you for being our favourite thing on TV. We all copied him at some point".

John Clarke's comedy colleagues also expressed their sadness following the satirist's death, with Charlie Pickering, host of ABC's comedy slot The Weekly, saying Clarke deserved the Nobel Prize, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

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