The Day I First Saw 'Humphrey Bear'

It was a straight forward show on an ordinary afternoon in the studios of NWS Channel 9 in Adelaide, where the Children's show The Channel Niners was going to air. I was musical director of The Channel Niners and had just accompanied on the piano a talented youngster in the musical segment of the show.

Ian Fairweather and Pam Western, comperes, were talking to their television audience via the cameras, when suddenly there appeared a rather large furry bear complete with tartan jacket, colourful bow tie and an attractive trilby hat clutching a pot of honey. The bear simply walked onto the set, then walked off.  I assume the producers were testing the reactions of the young viewers.  Little did they know that this loveable looking bear was to become Australia's most popular children's television personality of all time.  'Humphrey' of course went on to become a shining star in his own right through his top rating national series "Here's Humphrey".

It was my great pleasure on many occasions as the 'Music Man' to play music for this talented bear to dance to. I also joined Humphrey in many musical segments of "Here's Humphrey' teaching him how to make music by ringing bells, hitting little chimes with mallets and all sorts of other ways to make music with odds and ends young viewers could find around the kitchen.

Little did I know on that night when Humphrey just 'appeared' that he would joyfully entertain young and not so young viewers over many future decades and even beyond.