Who does Hills think he is?

Adam to take part in family tree show

Adam Hills has traced his European ancestry for the television show Who Do You Think You Are?

The comedian filmed his episode for the Australian version of the show this summer, in which he explored his Austrian, Maltese and Scottish roots.

‘I already knew a bit on my Dad’s side,’ he said. ‘There was a family scandal a couple of generations back but I knew too much about that already.

‘On my mum’s side we followed her grandfathers, one of whom came to Australia from Malta in 1912. The other came from Austria in 1907. But the day we started filming I knew nothing beyond that, my schedule literally said “Prague overnight” and next day driving to a mystery location. It was very tight-lipped.

Hills, who has just signed an exclusive, year-long deal development deal with Channel 4 in the UK, also revealed how his great-grandmother resented her husband’s nationality.

‘When World War One broke out, German and Austrian subjects were treated very badly in Australia, especially by the police,’ he said. ‘And they couldn’t get work. So he hid his heritage a bit. His Scottish wife hated it, she would never let him talk about it. This whole part of my family history was passed over.’

Who Do You Think You Are? airs on Australian broadcaster SBS next year, as part of a series that also traces the roots of fellow comic and talk-show host Rove McManus.

Hills, who is about to host the BBC Northern Ireland panel show Monumental, returns to the UK to perform at a benefit for Street Child of Sierra Leone on November 19 at the Hammersmith Apollo.

- by Jay Richardson

Published: 25 Oct 2012

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