Art & Design


A Speck-Tacular Finale

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After six seasons, 277 episodes and over a million viewers, Spicks and Specks is calling it a day. The finale will air on ABC later this month before presenters Adam Hills, Myf Warhurst and Alan Brough hit the road for a national farewell tour.

We caught up with Alan Brough to chat about working on the show that has made him Australia’s best know trivia nerd. In his role as team captain Brough often plays foil to host Hills and opposing captain Warhurst, and he sees this chemistry as essential to the show’s success. “At the start it was all about establishing roles. I’d known Myf through mutual friends and had met Adam through the comic scene, but as we all got to know each other better it became more nuanced.” Any how does Brough see his role in the show? “I suppose it’s being a smartass. ”

Filmed at ABC”s Southbank studios, Brough says shooting Spicks and Specks in front of a live audience means it can go in any direction. While Hills has a basic script the follow, the rest is off-the-cuff as panelists riff of each other. “The audience really eggs us on. When they laugh it pushes you into new places, making you take things further and hopefully funnier.”

For such a well known music buff, Brough doesn’t go to trivia nights anymore. “I was invited once to a charity trivia night at the school of a friend’s child. The kids trash talked me all night and ostracised me when I got questions wrong, so I’ve decided not to do it anymore.”

After nearly 300 shows, what are some of Brough’s highlights? “Dancing the Time Warp with Richard O’Brien was definitely up there, as was sitting next to Robert Forsyth from The Go-Betweens, who was so much more sartorially elegant than I could ever hope to be.” And while Brough can’t give away too much about the final episode, he promises “they’ll be heaps of lights, it’s going to be really loud with lots of dancing and singing, all manner of things. It’s going to be big.”

For 2012 the Kiwi comedian’s plans are more modest. “I’m going to revolutionise supermarket radio. I spend a lot of time in supermarkets and think they should really be doing a better job with the music. After that, I’m going to work on lifts.”

The final Spicks and Specks episode will air November 23 on ABC TV. The live show Speck-tacular will be in Melbourne Jan 12 – 14, 2011. For more info and tickets visit


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