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The Life of Palin: From Monty Python to Brazil


Sydney Opera House presents

The Life of Palin
From Monty Python to Brazil
Saturday 10th November 5pm, 60 mins, Concert Hall Sydney Opera House

Sydney Opera House will present one of the most popular figures of our time, Michael Palin, live, in conversation in the Concert Hall on Saturday 10th November as part of Ideas at the House.

Michael Palin’s comic exploits with the Monty Python team and subsequent films such as A Fish Called Wanda are now the stuff of legend. More recently, it is as the adventurous traveller of his major television series that has acquired a vast and loyal following. Michael Palin will take us from his early career with Monty Python through to his current passion, traversing the globe for his latest BBC TV series, Brazil. Michael Palin will share in his inimitable way, his experiences in this vast and disparate nation.

Michael Palin was born in Sheffield, went to Shrewsbury School and then to Oxford where he read history, performed in many comedy shows, and started working with fellow writer and performer Terry Jones.

After Oxford, Michael and Terry went on to write for various BBC comedy shows, notably The Frost Report and The Two Ronnies. In 1967, they teamed up with Eric Idle to write and perform the children’s comedy series, Do Not Adjust Your Set.

In 1969 came Monty Python’s Flying Circus, which firmly established Michael’s comic reputation along with his five collaborators Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle and Terry Jones. This team made forty-five Python episodes and five feature films including Monty Python and The Holy Grail, Monty Python’s Life of Brian and The Meaning of Life. At BAFTA, in 1987, the Monty Python team received the Michael Balcon Award for outstanding contribution to Cinema.

Michael’s other feature film acting credits include Terry Gilliam’s cult feature Brazil, Jabberwocky, The Missionary, which he wrote, Time Bandits, written with Terry Gilliam, American Friends, which he also co-wrote, A Private Function, A Fish Called Wanda, which won him a BAFTA Award for best supporting actor, and Fierce Creatures.

A self-confessed dromomaniac (travel addict), Michael contributed to two BBC series of Great Railway Journeys of the World, in 1980 and 1994. He also indulged his wanderlust in seven huge adventures for the BBC, Around the World in 80 Days, Pole to Pole, Full Circle, Hemingway Adventure, Sahara, Himalaya and New Europe which were enormously successful award-winning television series, books and audios. In 2008 he filmed Around the World in 20 Years a programme celebrating his first travel series, Around the World in 80 Days. An updated 20th anniversary edition of the book was also published.  

In 2006 the first volume of his diaries, 1969-1979: The Python Years, spent many weeks on the bestseller lists and in 2009 the second volume 1980-1988: Halfway to Hollywood was published.

In July 2012 Michael’s second novel The Truth was published.  He is currently completing work on a new four-part BBC1 travel series Brazil, to be broadcast in Australia in November.

Michael was made a CBE in the 2000 New Year’s Honours List for services to television drama & travel. In 2002 he received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the British Comedy Awards and in 2005 Michael was given a BAFTA Special Award. Between 2009 and 2012 Michael was President of the Royal Geographical Society. 


Life of Palin: from Monty Python to Brazil
When: Saturday 10th November, 5pm. 60 minutes
Where: Sydney Opera House, Concert Hall
Tickets: $39 - $69 / 9250 7777

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View past Ideas at the House talks at Sydney Opera House PLAY

SYDNEY MEDIA CONTACT: Alexandra Barlow / / 02 9250 7825               

View past Ideas at the House talks at Sydney Opera House PLAY


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