Allen's key

Radio 4 to profile Dave Allen

The groundbreaking career of Dave Allen is to be celebrated in a new Radio 4 documentary.

In The Sit-Down Stand-Up, former BBC entertainment executive Paul Jackson traces the life of the 68-year-old Irish comic “still revered by many as the godfather of comedy”.

It includes how he was banned from Australian TV after telling his producer to go away and masturbate live on air, and how he landed the BBC in trouble for using the f-word as a punchline.

Jackson will argue that Allen “effectively revolutionised the way comedians in Britain presented their material in the Sixties and Seventies, shifting comedy from the traditional gag-set-up-gag structure to a more laid-back, satirical, personal story-telling style”.

The show, to air at 11.30am on January 18, includes archives of Allen’s work, as well as an interview with him.

Meanwhile, comedian Chris Green has landed a Radio 4 series in the guise of American country singer Tina C.

His character, right, will tour Britain in a four-part series starting next month, Tina C’s Tiny Island Tour.

The show mixes travelogue, supposedly as her gargantuan Winnebago motor home wends its way through the country, with footage of live shows.

Tina kicks off her UK tour in England – “not because I perceive it as having cultural dominance over the other parts of the Union (although,coincidentally, I do)” – before heading to Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales.

Tina C caused controversy at the 2002 Edinburgh Fringe with her Twin Towers Tribute show, and a poster that showed her posing with her legs where the World Trade Centre once stood, and a plane heading towards them.

The show starts on Radio 4 at 11pm on January 19.

Published: 18 Dec 2004

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