15 Apr 2021

NZ Screen History: Billy T James

From Afternoons with Jesse Mulligan, 2:30 pm on 15 April 2021

This audio is not downloadable due to copyright restrictions.

This week in our New Zealand Screen History series, we are looking at the work of the late, William James Te Wehi Taitoko - better known by his stage name Billy T James.

He started in the Maori Volcanics show band in the 70's with Prince Tui Teka, and became a a household name in the 1980's thanks to his sketch show, The Billy T James Show which ran for 7 series.

He died of heart failure in 1991. But his legacy lives on in the form of the Billy T award for up and coming comedians.

To look back on making The Billy T James Jesse speaks to Billy's former co-star and co-writer, Peter Rowley.

He also chats with Maori comedian Jamaine Ross about how to frame his comedy about race in 2021.


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