You may recognise some of these celebrities, others you may not but what I want to achieve in this article is to familiarise people with the celebrities whose work and personalities inspire me and who I think deserve the adoration I have for them.
Most, if not all, of us, know who Stephen Fry is but the reason I’m including him in this article is because there is a lot more to him than just the clever man on the TV we all see. Fry has lived one of the most interesting, crazy and inspiring lives of most of the celebrities I know of. He has been to prison, tackled with cocaine addiction and has dealt with manic depression for most of his life. These details about him, articulated through his masterfully poetic speaking manner and sharp wit are available to anyone who wants to know and take interest in him. He once said ‘I say yes to everything’ and that is evidently clear. You can learn about him or immerse yourself in his work in the form of so many mediums. I’ve read his books, listened to him on radio and podcasts, watched his documentaries and seen him in debates. Yet, there is still more to learn about him. That is the beauty of having him as a celebrity, he provides the world with interesting, varied and top quality work and if you delve into it, you’ll love him as much as I do.
Victoria Wood is a national treasure and rightly so, yet I think far more people, especially young people should be familiar with her. An extremely talented and hilarious stand-up comedian and comedy writer, Wood is responsible for some of the best classic sketches and shows in British comedy. Her sketch show ‘Victoria Wood As Seen On TV’ and sitcom ‘Dinnerladies’ are home to some of the best, silly yet masterfully written jokes and gags I’ve ever seen. But it is also Wood as a person that makes me admire her. If you see her do interviews or hear her on the radio, she comes across as such a modest, down to earth and laid back individual. Rare traits in the show business industry and the world of celebrities. Her early death in 2016 meant Britain lost one of its finest comedians. I will always admire and be inspired by the fact that any show of hers I watch, she would have created it, written it and directed it; an impressive feat for a woman in the 80s. So look her up, I’m sure you’ll see where my admiration is coming from.
Another, of course, familiar name, Nigella has reached the status of celebrity where only her first name has to be uttered to know it’s her. Yet I think her reputation, brand and image as the sultry and articulate TV cook somewhat underestimates her. I love her TV shows obviously but first and foremost I see Nigella as a cookery writer and an extremely talented one at that. I have many of her books that not only illustrate her vast knowledge of food and cookery but also interesting and engaging to read bits of writing alongside her recipes. Nigella talks about food in a way unlike any of my other cookbooks do. Her approach is laid back, confident and advisory rather than instructional. This makes her books very good reading as well as recipe guides. Everyone should be as familiar with her work I am. Her books and TV shows aren’t just about cooking and recipes, but the importance and joy of good food, outlooks we should all be familiar with. She’s part of the reason I love cooking so much and for that, I will always be thankful for and inspired by her.
One of the finest documentary filmmakers on TV, Louis Theroux has engaged with some of the most niche areas of life imaginable. Regardless of the topic of his documentaries, be it Scientology, gambling addiction or Ann Widdecombe, once you sit down to watch it, you’ll find it interesting. What he does with such masterful ease is that he engages with his subjects with a laid back and subtle intrigue and inquisitiveness that enables him to ask the most personal and revealing questions. That’s what makes his documentaries such good quality, he asks the questions and gets the answers that we all want to know. He also seems such a lovely and charming man. If you follow him on Twitter or see him on interviews he comes across as being such a genuine and modestly intellectual character, which is always so refreshing to see in celebrities. This personality shines through his documentaries and everyone should love him just for them alone.
The only thing that is nearly ridiculous enough as my obsession with Ms Channing, is the woman herself. Ridiculous, however, it the most wonderful and fabulous way. A Broadway star from the 60s and a TV regular for decades after, Carol Channing is a household name in the US and one of its classic celebrities. Yet her charm, wit and infectious personality never quite made its way over to the UK. I cannot understand why. Ms Channing represents everything right about show business; infectious personality, sheer talent, uniqueness and adoration for her fans. Few people know her name yet everyone seems to know the song ‘Diamonds Are A Girls Best Friend’, a song mostly attributed to Marilyn Monroe. But the song was first sung by Carol Channing on stage in ‘Gentlemen Prefer Blondes’, which just shows the impact and affect Channing and her career had on the world. I can’t really put into words what she does or why I love her so because if I’m completely truthful she is extremely eccentric and unlike any other celebrity. What I do know though is that she inspires me so much that I have her on a mug, so her name is worth a google because she should be a celebrity we are all familiar with. I promise she won’t disappoint.