Comedian Mick Miller got his big break on ITV’s New Faces, which was the talent show of its day. He became a household name when he was a regular on ITV’s The Comedians, and co-starred with Johnny Vegas in the cult BBC comedy show, Ideal.
Often referred to as “The bald guy with the long hair”, this has been his trademark since he started comedy in the mid-1970s. We caught up with him for a chat…
What has been your career highlight?
My Royal Command performance for the Royal Variety Performance in 2011, alongside the likes of Barry Manilow and Tony Bennett. Performing at the London Palladium that day was amazing and was my big break. My part wasn’t even meant to be on TV, and it was Peter Kay who had asked me to stand in for six minutes between performances. However, I went down really well with the audience, and when I got a call to say that my part had made it to TV I was so pleased. The only thing is that I didn’t get to meet the Royals that day. I have also performed in Las Vegas, Australia, Hong Kong and Dubai, so feel incredibly lucky.
What comedy sketch do you think you are best known for?
Probably Noddy, so I do that wherever I go. It’s a sketch about an alcoholic radio host who presents a morning children's show, and gradually drinks more! As the routine goes on, the announcer slurs his words and gets increasingly more drunk!
How often do you work on new material?
I’m thinking about new material every day and new ideas, and I still do comedy clubs too, which can be tough, but you find out quickly if a joke is funny.
What can we expect from your appearance at Potters?
I’ll be seeing what is happening on the news, so I can perform some new material, as well as things I am known for. I am looking forward to seeing all the Potters gang, like Mark Brewer and Buzby, who I have worked with for over 25 years! I even went with Potters Abroad to Cyprus with the Potter family.
Who makes you laugh?
Peter Kay and I was even in an episode of Car Share. I like Sean Lock too and Jason Manford, and Johnny Vegas calls me his TV Dad. I’m lucky to have been a personal friend of Ken Dodd and Les Dawson.
Anything you’d still love to do?
I would love to have a go at Live from the Apollo.
What do you think that people would be surprised to know about you?
Before I did the comedy I was a pro-footballer and before that was a Pontins blue coat.
What do you do to warm up before a performance?
I do lots of walking around and have a glimpse of the audience to gage them so I can possibly adapt my material. It’s important to be able to do that and know what the audience will like!
Here’s some facts on Mick…
- After seeing an advert, Mick and one of his friends applied for a place at soccer trials for Port Vale Football Club. They were accepted and at just 15 years old, the legendary Stanley Matthews signed him to Port Vale. In 1966 he was called up for an England youth team trial, but lost out to Peter Shilton OBE
- Mick worked in holiday parks and eventually appeared in the Blue Coat shows, and became interested in comedy, taking every opportunity to learn from the visiting comedians. Later he became the main comedy host
- In 1976 he applied to go on the popular TV talent show, New Faces and won his heat. As a result he was signed up for a national tour supporting Chuck Berry
- He got offered a regular spot on the TV show, The Comedians, with household names such as Roy Walker, Stan Boardman and Jim Bowen
- He was also given his own half hour TV special called Success
- Mick also co presented a series called The Funny Side, along with Mike Smith and Cheryl Baker
- When he appeared in Last Laugh in Vegas, an ITV show in 2018, the producer told him to get his hair cut, which started the Twitter #SaveMickMillersHair campaign
- In 2011, Peter Kay asked Mick to appear on the Royal Variety Performance and when it was televised, Mick was trending worldwide at number one on Twitter
- He appeared as Johnny Vegas’ father in BBC sitcom, Ideal, and featured in an episode of Peter Kay’s Car Share.