Alfred Hawthorne "Benny" Hill - biography
Alfred Hawthorne "Benny" Hill (21 January 1924 – 20 April 1992) was an English comedian and actor, best remembered for his television programme The Benny Hill Show, an amalgam of slapstick, burlesque and double entendre in a format that included live comedy and filmed segments, with him at the focus of almost every segment.
A prominent figure in British culture for nearly four decades, his show proved to be one of the great success stories of television comedy. Among the most watched programmes in the UK, the audience peaked at over 21 million in 1971. The show generated impressive revenues for Thames Television, and retains a following in much of the world decades after Hill's death.
Inspired by the "star comedians" of British music hall shows, Hill set out to make his mark in show business. He changed his name to "Benny" in homage to his favourite comedian, Jack Benny.
Films and recordings
Hill's audio recordings include "Gather in the Mushrooms" (1961), "Pepys' Diary" (1961), "Transistor Radio" (1961), "Harvest of Love" (1963) and "Ernie (The Fastest Milkman in the West)", which was the UK Singles Chart Christmas number one single in 1971. He also appeared in the 1986 video of the song "Anything She Does" by the band Genesis.