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Peter Downes - Funny As Interview

Funny As Interviews – 2019

Broadcaster and sound historian Peter Downes began his radio career in 1947, producing entertainment programmes at Wellington station 2YA. In this Funny As interview, Downes discusses the history of radio comedy and more, including:

  • Kiwi comedians making it onto the airwaves for the first time in the mid 1920s, starting with Ajax and Bjax 
  • New Zealand radio comedy superstars Chuckles with Jerry, from 1939 — "puppets and radio don't actually seem to be good bedfellows, but strangely enough it worked"
  • Commissioning The Prickly Thistle Club —  a Dunedin-based radio comedy which ran for nine years, and became a TV series and stage show
  • Working his way up to become National Radio's Executive Producer for Programme Services
This interview was recorded for 2019 TV series Funny As: The Story of New Zealand Comedy. All audiovisual content is copyright to Augusto, and may not be reproduced. Publication of Funny As extended interviews made possible with funding from the NZ Lotteries Grants Board.