In 1967, Eric Idle suggested to Garden that he should collaborate with Tim Brooke-Taylor on a TV sketch show. Broaden Your Mind (1968-69) was the result and ran for 2 series.
Graeme Garden was born in Aberdeen, Scotland in 1943. His father was an orthopedic surgeon and his mother was a nurse. The family moved to Preston in 1947 and Graeme was educated Repton, the Public School in Derbyshire. From there, he went to Cambridge University's Emmanuel College to study natural science.
Graeme Garden is married to his second wife Emma, and they now live in Oxfordshire.
The Goodies and I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue have tended to dominate Garden's career, but he has been involved as both a writer or performer in many other productions. During the 1980s he could be seen presenting the history series A Sense of the Past for Yorkshire TV, the health programme Body Matters for the BBC and the quiz game Tell The Truth for London Weekend Television.
The Goodies was a slapstick comedy show featuring three men offering to do "anything, anytime", and performing all sorts of silly tasks. The three characters were a mad scientist (Garden), an upper-class type (Brooke-Taylor) and a scruffy, left-wing anarchist (Oddie).
The 75 episodes of The Goodies were mostly written by Garden and Oddie, with the spin-off of three best-selling books to do with the show. They won the 'Silver Rose of Montreux' award twice, along with a 'chart success', with the song Funky Gibbon reaching No. 4.
After Cambridge, Garden began his clinical training at King's College Hospital in London. He was also working on his radio show I'm Sorry I'll Read That Again with Tim Brooke-Taylor and John Cleese. Three years later when he qualified in medicine, he was faced with a choice after he was asked to take a part in a TV comedy Twice
Whilst at Cambridge in 1962, Garden joined the prestigious 'Footlights Club' after an audition by its President, Tim Brooke-Taylor. Garden was to become 'Footlights' President the following year. It was at this time that he formed friendships with future comedy partners Bill Oddie, John Cleese, Eric Idle and Graham Chapman.
I met the comedy writer Graeme Garden at the G-Mex Centre in Manchester in November 2006. He signed my 'Goodies' photograph for me.
Garden has also been involved in a great deal of theatre work, appearing in many plays and tours with the Cambridge Theatre Company. He later acted in productions with the National Theatre, and in London's West End. His TV dramas have included Peak Practice (2002) and with occasional appearances as Mr Lofthouse in Holby City.
As a writer, Graeme Garden had a lot to do with the 'Doctor' TV series beginning with Doctor in the House (9 episodes), Doctor at Large (8 episodes) and Doctor in Charge (8 episodes).
a Fortnight. He chose entertainment and has not practised medicine since.
a third series, the two writers wanted a change. The result was The Goodies, a show that would run from 1970 to 1982 and bring great fame to Garden, Brooke-Taylor and Bill Oddie.
When the BBC wanted
I'm Sorry I'll Read That Again
The cast of
In 1972, Garden revised his University-days idea of I'm Sorry I'll Read That Again and the new BBC radio show I'm
Sorry I haven't a Clue was born. Thirty five years later, the show is still running on Radio 4 and has even been on tour, with more tours planned for the future. The show consists of four comedians split into two teams and "given silly things to do" by its long-standing chairman, jazz trumpeter Humphrey Lyttleton. The show has regular features like the fictional letter (with its double-entendres) from 'Mrs Trelllis' of North Wales and 'Mornington Crescent' a nonsensical game about London's landmarks.
The ADC (Amateur Dramatics Club)
Theatre in Cambridge, used by the
Graeme Garden in
Graeme Garden, Humphrey Lyttleton,
The Goodies performing the Funky Gibbon
Twice A Fortnight
Barry Cryer & Tim Brooke-Taylor from
Bill Oddie, Tim Brooke-Taylor &
I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue
Bill Oddie, Tim Brooke-Taylor & Graeme Garden
Graeme Garden signed my photo of The Goodies
Graeme Garden as they are today
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