Sue Lawley's castaway this week is the larger than life TV presenter Graham Norton. He was recently voted the most powerful man in comedy with four Baftas and an international Emmy under his belt. He's been on screen recently with his weekly show from New York but he's better known to British audiences for his So Graham Norton, as well as the annoying Father Noel in the series Father Ted. After six years with Channel 4 he's been poached by the BBC to front a Saturday night light entertainment show. He's compared the two channels to the difference between a night out with your friends or a family Christmas lunch and media critics have pondered how his camp brand of adult humour will translate to mainstream TV.
Originally born Graham Walker in Dublin in 1963, he was brought up in the small town of Bandon in West Cork. As a child he loved television describing it as a 'window to life' and a world he wanted to be part of. He began an English and French degree at University College Cork but dropped out after his first year and went to America where he lived in a hippy commune in San Francisco. He eventually returned and enrolled at the Central School of Speech and Drama in London with the ambition of becoming an actor. He changed his name to Norton - as the actor's union Equity infomed him they already had another Graham Walker on their books. He moved to Channel 4 in 1998 and moves to the BBC on his return from the States later this year.
[Taken from the original programme material for this archive edition of Desert Island Discs]
Favourite track: Islands in the Stream
Book: Mansfield Park by Jane Austen
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|Interviewed Guest||Graham Norton|