There is a reason Patti Newton is one of Australian television's best recognised faces: she's been on it practically since Australian TV began. Mainstream TV broadcasting started in 1956 and just one year later Patti was making TV appearances on the live children's TV show The Tarax Show from the age of 12.
This kickstarted a life-long career performing on stage and screen, with appearances on iconic Australian shows IMT (In Melbourne Tonight), Bandstand, The Graham Kennedy Show, and Good Morning Australia. Patti even co-hosted a number of series with her husband, iconic Australian performer Bert Newton, including the Ford Superquiz show and variety show The Bert and Patti Newton Show.
This week Patti Newton returns to our television screens for Who Do You Think You Are in which she explores her performance roots through discovering more about her great uncle Billy Maloney also worked as a performer. She knew very little about her late relative and is surprised by some of the information she uncovered about his experiences in the industry. Patti also explores her father's side of the family, something that's "always been a bit of a mystery" with a discovery that left her shocked.
In an interview with The Daily Telegraph, Patti recalled that ‘Every time someone would mention the series before I did it, they’d say “I wonder what they’ll find?” And I’d say, “Oh, they’ll probably find a murderer and I’ll die.” And they did.’
You can watch her episode of Who Do You Think You Are on Tuesday 5 June at 7:30pm.
In considering her lengthy career, we've curated this collection of appearances Patti has made over the years:
The Tarax Show
This clip, from 1963, has Patti on screen in the Christmas Pantomime "Marianne". Patti, working under her maiden name Patti McGrath, is seen alongside Gerry Gee (the doll) and Ron Blaskett (Gerry's human accompaniment) singing "Wishing Will Make it So".
In an early TV appearance, Patti appeared on a June 1966 episode of Bandstand performing the song 'The End of The World'.
A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Colleseum
Appearing alongside Graham Kennedy, Philip Brady, and Rosie Sturgess, Patti portrayed "Mercia', one of two Christians in line to be fed to lions.
Patti and Bert's Wedding
In November 1974, Patti McGrath married her on-screen colleague Bert Newton, with an exceptionally large crowd of well-wishers gathered outside St Dominic's Church to see them.
The Don Lane Show
Variety television thrives on extreme silliness, with Patti and Bert more than happy to deliver. Here they perform the song 'Dear John' on The Don Lane Show under the guise of characters Tex & Myrtle Newton.
Good Morning Australia
From 1992-2005 Bert Newton hosted the morning variety TV show Good Morning Australia, also known as GMA. Hosted by Nert Newton, the show routinely featured longtime Australian TV mainstays in weekly segments, drawing upon talents like Val Jellay, Phillip Brady, Colette Mann, Ann-Maree Biggar, Ken james, Tonia Toddman, and Shane Bourne among many. Of course, where there is Bert, Patti Newton is never far away. Patti featured in multiple roles throughout the run of the show, even belting out a musical number every so often. Morning TV was never more glamorous.
In this clip, Patti Newton performed the Elvis song 'Can't Help Falling In Love' in dedication to a home viewer as part of her recurring Hearts and Heroes segment.