Steptoe And Son Down Under, 1977
Having completed eight series of one of the most successful sitcoms of all time it was off to pastures new for actors Harry H. Corbett ans Wilfrid Brambell. The TV series ended in 1974, returning only once more later that year for the final Christmas special, the radio series ended 2 years later in 1976.
In 1977, Harry H Corbett’s tour promoter Kevin O’Neill reminded him about the great time he had whilst touring the Australia in 1972. Harry contacted Wilfrid Brambell to see if he was agreeable to the idea of a ‘Steptoe and Son’ stage show, he agreed. They were given permission by writers Ray Galton and Alan Simpson to make use of material from the TV show as they saw fit, but the writers did not produce any new material or have any involvement with the show. The two actors put some material together, added some songs and a background story.
The show opened in Australia in September 1977 and was directed by Harry H. Corbett. There would be three tours of the show the first in Australia, then to New Zealand and then back home for just a handful of performances. Whilst in Australia they made two commercials for Ajax.
Much has been made of the complete breakdown of the relationship between the actors at this time. Yet despite the media reports neither the TV show’s writers Galton and Simpson or Corbett’s family had noticed anything whilst they had worked together in the past.
Harold has emigrated to Australia to finally escape the clutches of his manipulative father, only to discover Albert has followed him there and nothing has changed!
The two end up performing a cabaret show in which the audience are treated to jokes, sketches and songs as well as familiar lines from the show.
Harry H. Corbett – Harold Steptoe
Wilfrid Brambell – Albert Steptoe
Characters Created By: Ray Galton and Alan Simpson
Written By: Harry H. Corbett and Wilfrid Brambell
Show Opened: September 1977