Michaela Strachan - a familiar face
Michaela Strachan was born in Ewell, Surrey, in 1961 and was apparently named after a nurse in the 1960s TV drama Emergency Ward 10. When eight years old, she went to the Christian Science school Claremont Fan Court, after her primary school burnt down!
Then came a complete change of direction when she presented a music and clubbing programme called The Hit Man and Her alongside pop producer Pete Waterman. The show ran for four years. Michaela's guest appearances around this time are too numerous to mention, but include Visions (a religious programme) and Naruhodo - The World, which she filmed in Japan as part of Channel 4's Japanese season. She has both introduced and also guest-starred in the Children's Royal Variety Show.
From the age of three she went to dance school after ordinary school, did loads of competitions and exams in tap, ballet, singing & drama and so decided quite young that she wanted to be a performer of some kind. Later she went into The Arts Educational school (ArtsEd) at sixteen, to study dance, drama & singing.
She was 'spotted' whilst performing in this production and it led to her featuring in several Saturday morning Children's TV programmes in the 1980s such as Wide Awake Club and Wacaday with Timmy Mallett. subsequently led to her own Saturday and Sunday morning programmes, Hey Hey It's Saturday and Michaela.
During the 1990s, Michaela Strachan became familiar for presenting many other wildlife programmes too, and these included Owl TV for Channel 4, along with The Really Wild Guide (two series), The Web and The Animal Zone, all for the BBC's Natural History Unit, and also Wildlife Rescue II for Anglia TV.
In 1993, Michaela Strachan became one of the presenters for the award-winning children's wildlife programme The Really Wild Show. She also fronted many award winning RWS Specials including one on the state of the South China Sea and another on Tiger conservation. She remained with this production
She gave a very interesting talk about making TV programmes about wildlife, and showed clips from some of them. She was especially interested in sharks, and we saw excerpts from her documentary, Shark Encounters, which she filmed in California and South Africa.
on TV during the 1980s & 90s
In 1997 Michaela co-hosted Wildscreen, the wildlife film festival awards, screened on BBC2. In 1998 she co-presented BBC2's The Fossil Roadshow with Peter Snow, and Orang-utan Rescue, a BBC1 wildlife special focusing on the plight of the orang-utans.
Michaela Strachan married film-maker Duncan Chard in 1996 but they divorced after five years. She now lives with her new partner, widowed TV producer Nick Chevalier, and their son Oliver (born in 2005). They now live in Cape Town, South Africa with Chevalier's three children.
Michaela regularly does pantomime and has appeared in Cinderella, Goldilocks, Aladdin and Jack & The Beanstalk. She has played Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz and Peter in Peter Pan several times.
In 2004-5, Michaela embarked on a year long project filming Elephant Diaries, a series which followed the rescue of orphaned elephants, and later, their hazardous reintroduction to the wild.
She was extremely friendly, and signed my book, Animal, which she thought was an excellent one on the subject.
I met Michaela Strachan when I visited The Outdoors Show at the NEC in Birmingham in March 2006.
In 2005, she won a Children's BAFTA award for 'Best Presenter'. Since then, she has also been a regular contributor to the long running BBC1 series about farming & the environment called Countryfile with John Craven.
Between 2003 and 2006 Strachan made 25 programmes called Michaela's Wild Challenge which won 2 BAFTAs. These were wildlife documentaries, intended to be both educational & entertaining.
She left college early to take part in pantomime in Colchester, then immediately landed an 18 month part playing Liza on a tour of Seven Brides for Seven Brothers which included the West End and Canada.
for thirteen years, until it finally came to an end in 2006.
In each episode she undertakes a wildlife-related dare, such as bottle-feeding a baby dolphin, microchipping a crocodile, or releasing a tiger shark in the Caribbean.
Wacaday with Timmy Mallett & Michaela Strachan
Michaela Strachan is vegetarian and was featured on the cover of the magazine Vegetarian Living (September 1993 issue).
She also had a brief music career as Michaela with two singles H.A.P.P.Y. Radio (1989) and Take Good Care Of My Heart (1990).
Record sleeves of Michaela's two singles
Nick Baker & Michaela Strachan
in The Really Wild Show
The Hit Man and Her
With Timmy Mallett in Wide Awake Club
Michaela Strachan could be seen in
countless childrens programmes
in the 80s & 90s
Michaela Strachan filming
The Really Wild Show
Michaela Strachan loves the outdoor life
Michaela Strachan with a
Michaela Strachan during filming
for Elephant Diaries
for presenter of Michaela's Wild Challenge
Theatre Poster for Peter Pan in Brighton 2002
Michaela Strachan in 2005 with her Children's BAFTA
of Vegetarian Living in 1993
Michaela Strachan on the cover
my book called
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