Greater Manchester Television, Film & Broadcasting
(Born 1974) Maxine Peake was born on the 14 July 1974 in Bolton. A celebrated stage, film and television actress best known for her role as and Twinkle in Victoria Wood’s situation comedy “Dinnerladies” , as well as Veronica in Channel 4’s Manchester-based drama series “Shameless” . She had attended Westhoughton High School, and at the age of 13 joined the Bolton Octagon Youth Theatre and later the youth theatre of the Royal Exchange in Manchester. At the age of 21, after a time at Salford College of Technology, she went to London to join the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts. Other appearances have included “Early Doors” and then the role of Moors Murder Myra Hindley in “See No Evil: the Moors Murders ” in 2006. Also in that year she appeared in Channel 4’s “The Third Day” , “Confessions of a Diary Secretary” in 2007; the role of Cinderella in BBC TV’s “Fairy Tales” in 2008 as well as “Hancock and Joan” for BBC 4 in that same year. Her first major feature film role came as Angela in the film “Clubbed” . The appeared in the Channel 4 series “Red Riding” and the leading role in “Criminal Justice” both in 2009. Maxine has appeared extensively in stage productions for the Royal Exchange Theatre, the Royal National Theatre, the Royal Court and at Bolton Octagon Theatre, as well as television roles in “Little Dorrit”, “Coronation Street”, “Hetty Wainthrop Investigates”, “Dialzel & Pascoe”, “Jonathan Creek”, “Silk” among many others.. Recently she moved back to live in Salford to be near to her family.
(1931-2009) Keith Macklin was a popular sports broadcaster and one-time North-West Evening Mail journalist, who commentated on football and rugby league for Yorkshire Television, as well as presenting regional television shows in the 1960s. He did his first Rugby League Challenge Cup Final commentary from Wembley in 1955, when Barrow beat Workington Town, though his media career really took off when, in 1956, he was asked to commentate on a rugby league game between Leeds and Oldham for the BBC, which was so well received that he was given the job on a permanent basis. He worked in Barrow in the 1950s as a reporter but also covered Barrow Rugby League Club affairs. In 1962, he wrote The History of Rugby League Football . Later, he was a reporter on the ITV sports programme, “Football First” , which, when ITV took over the Premiership Highlights contract, was later renamed “The Goalrush” . Macklin was a presenter on the forerunner to ‘Look North’ from 1960 until 1965. He was also a commentator on the Indoor League in the 1970s. With Border TV he was a presenter on “Lookaround” , and host of their local quiz series “Brain of the Border”. In 1982, he was instrumental in the setting up of Red Rose Radio (now “Rock FM” ) and became its first Programme Controller. Macklin was also Methodist lay preacher, who started the Layman Church Notes column in the Daily Mail . Keith’s autobiography ‘A Two Horse Town’ was published in December 2007. Following a long illness, Keith Macklin died in hospital in Blackburn on Saturday 1st August 2009 at the age of 78.
Arlene Phillips OBE
(Born 1943) Arlene Phillips was born on the 22 May 1943 in Prestwich of Jewish parents. She originally wanted to be a ballet dancer and began classes at the Muriel Tweedy School in Manchester when she was just 3 years old. Arlene was to become an internationally renowned choreographer and director of West End and Broadway musicals, but also has been a theatre director, talent scout and dancer, having worked throughout a long career in many fields of entertainment. But she was to come to a wider audience attention e as a judge on television talent shows including BBC 1 Television’s “Strictly Come Dancing” and “So You Think You Can Dance” .
From her mid-teens she began teaching her distinctive jazz style of dance in several prominent London dance studios – first at The Dance Centre and later at Pineapple Dance Studios in Covent Garden, and the Italia Conti Stage School. She quickly established herself as a successful teacher and choreographer. She also choreographed the 1982 film, “Annie” , and the Duran Duran song “The Wild Boys” , which was proclaimed the Best British Video at the 1985 BRIT Awards. She has worked on some of the biggest West End musicals, including “Grease”, “Starlight Express”, “Saturday Night Fever” and “Flashdance” , as well as in the Broadway theatre in the USA. She s is a multiple Olivier Award winner and Tony Award award nominee. She was chief choreographer to Hot Gossip , a British dance troupe which she formed in 1974 using students she was teaching at the time. In 2001 she was awarded the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours. In 2006 she was made an honorary member of the International Dance Teachers Association and in 2010 she released a range of clothing with plus size retailer Marisota. In 2011 she began work on the judging panel of ITV’s “So You Think You Can Dance”.
(1928-2009) British comedy scriptwriter Vincent Powell was born Vince Smith on the 6th of August 1928 to a working class Catholic family in the Manchester suburb of Miles Platting. Vince exhibited an early interest in comedy and the stage, to the extent that he was actually expelled from St Bede’s Catholic College after playing truant in order to visit a local theatre to enjoy comedy and variety acts – Jewell & Warriss, George Formby and Gracie Fields numbered among them. After leaving full-time education, he worked for a time at a gentleman’s tailors in Albert Square in Manchester city centre, while still writing and submitting scripts to ITV and the BBC. He went on to form a very successful partnership with Harry Driver, and the two wrote many popular television comedy series in the 1960s and 1970s including scripts for the hitherto unknown comedian Harry Worth. However, when Harry Driver died in 1973, Vince continued his solo writing career with equal success and he was able to buy a villa in the South of France where he lived for many years. His solo work included “The Wackers”, “Mind Your Language”, “Bottle Boys”, “A Sharp Intake of Breath” , as well as collaborating on scripts in John Mortimer’s sitcom “Never The Twain” , which ran successfully until 1991. A prolific creator of situation comedies from the early days of mass-audience television right through to the early 1990s, Vince Powell’s extensive career saw an impressive list of comedy credits including controversial shows like “Love Thy Neighbour”, which, though branded by many as promoting racism, drew a regular audience of some 18 million viewers. Powell always denied that the show was racist. Rather, he maintained, it showed up racial bigotry as pathetic and somewhat stupid, and was actually anti-racist, (though by today’s standards it would be thought distinctly politically incorrect). As well as writing many scripts for “Coronation Street”, he had o ther hits with shows like “Bless This House” and “Nearest & Dearest”, “Pardon The Expression”, “Adam Adamant Lives!” , “George and the Dragon”, “Two In Clover”, “For the Love Of Ada” and “Never Mind The Quality, Feel The Width” , drawing extensively on his own early experience working as a tailor. After a short illness, Vince Powell died on Monday 13th July 2009 at the Royal Surrey Hospital at the age of 80.
(Born 1973) Born Paddy Joseph McGuinness in Farnworth, Bolton on the 14th August 1973, his distinctive Bolton accent marks him out immediately as a local Lancashire man. He went to school with his future comedy partner Peter Kay. McGuinness was educated at Mount St Joseph’s Secondary School in Farnworth, and later a BTEC 1st Diploma in Science course with the intention of becoming a laboratory technician. However, that never materialised and a succession of jobs followed, including being a waiter, a warehouse worker for Morrisons Supermarket, a buillder’s labourer, a lifeguard at Horwich Leisure Centre, a machine cleaner at Warburtons bakery and a holiday representative in Corfu, before returning to live in Bolton. It was while working at Horwich, that he filmed in two episodes of Peter Kay’s “That Peter Kay Thing” and its follow-up “Phoenix Nights” in 2000, which brought him to a wider public attention. In 2005 he began working in comedy shows and toured as a stand-up comedian. Other television work soon followed, which included his own “Chuck Stryker: The Unknown Stuntman” on E4 which he wrote and starred in. His DVD, “Paddy McGuinness: The Dark Side Tour” was released in 2006 and sold over 30,000 copies in its first week. In late 2008 McGuinness was involved in a second tour of 76 scheduled dates in the UK – known as the “Paddy McGuinness Plus You! Live” . In January 2010 he hosted a successful dating programme on ITV called “Take Me Out”. A second series of “Rory and Paddy’s Great British Adventure” was broadcast in September of that year. McGuinness also regularly appears in and does voiceovers for television adverts, (notably Greggs the Bakers), as well as appearing in pantomime at the Manchester Opera House.