|Birth Day:||March 28, 1943|
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Stilgoe was born in Camberley, Surrey, on 28 March 1943. He was brought up in Liverpool, where, as lead singer of a group called 'Tony Snow and the Blizzards', he performed at the Cavern Club. He was educated at Liverpool College, Monkton Combe School in Somerset and at Clare College, Cambridge, where he was a member of the Cambridge University Footlights.
In 1966 Stilgoe played Benjamin in the West End musical, Jorrocks. He made his name on the BBC television teatime programme, Nationwide, followed by Esther Rantzen's That's Life!, a light-hearted consumer affairs programme for which he wrote comic songs satirising minor domestic misfortunes, often to the tune of "Oh! Mr Porter". One song was a satire on 'officials' who have, in the name of the song, "Statutory Right of Entry to your Home"; with Stilgoe playing and singing, in barber-shop style, all parts himself using trick photography. His ability to write a song from almost any source material and at speed is part of his cabaret act, which includes singing the instructions from a Swedish payphone; a pastiche of the King's Singers listing the kings and queens of England in which he sings all four parts; and composing a song in the interval from words and musical notes called out by the audience. He has also written and presented BBC radio programmes, including Hamburger Weekend, Used Notes, Stilgoe's Around, Maestro and Richard Stilgoe's Traffic Jam Show on BBC Radio 4.
In 1979 the BBC aired "Decision '79 Breakfast Special" as part of its coverage of the parliamentary elections that brought Margaret Thatcher to power; the show featured Stilgoe singing the election results. In 1981, Southern Television commissioned him to write a satirical song about the company that outbid them for southern England's ITV franchise, Television South; the result was "Portakabin TV," a reference to the portable buildings TVS was forced to use as studios and offices until its own purpose-built complex in Maidstone, Kent could be completed, and also until Southern's contract had expired. The song was aired as part of Southern's final broadcast on 31 December 1981, a retrospective programme titled "And It's Goodbye From Us."
In 1980 he wrote two Christmas songs, "Christmas Bells" and "Imitation Myrrh", which he sang with Broom Leys Junior School choir, from Coalville, Leicestershire. The songs were sold as a record at Christmas throughout Leicestershire to raise money for the Leicestershire Arts and Music Association. These two, with other Christmas pieces of his composition, also appeared in The Truth about Christmas – or Gold, Frankenstein and Merv – a one-off television programme in 1984, performed by Stilgoe and children from the Broom Leys Junior School Choir.
Stilgoe is a fan of anagrams and in 1980 he wrote The Richard Stilgoe Letters; a Jumble of Anagrams, using characters made of anagrams of his own name. These included Chris Dogtailer and Giscard O'Hitler. He has appeared over 200 times on the daytime TV quiz show, Countdown, and hosted quiz shows such as The Year in Question on Radio 4, Finders Keepers (1981–1985), and Scoop (1981–1982). His 45-minute poem, "Who Pays the Piper?", outlined the history of music from Pan to the modern day, interspersing classical music with re-written lyrics. He also appeared on a satirical BBC TV show of the 1980s, A Kick Up the Eighties.
In 1984, Stilgoe founded the Alchemy Foundation, which distributes money to good causes. The foundation is funded from Stilgoe's royalties from American productions of Starlight Express and The Phantom of the Opera.
Stilgoe founded the Orpheus Centre in 1998, in his former family home in Godstone, Surrey, offering performing arts experiences to young people with disabilities; he also started the Stilgoe Family Concerts series at the Royal Festival Hall, which feature young performers and regular commissions of new music.
He was High Sheriff of Surrey in 1998–99, and is a Deputy Lieutenant. He became president of Surrey County Cricket Club in 2005. He has also been president of the Lord's Taverners.
He was knighted in the 2012 Birthday Honours for charitable services through the Alchemy Foundation.
Currently, Richard Stilgoe is 78 years, 1 months and 18 days old. Richard Stilgoe will celebrate 79th birthday on a Monday 28th of March 2022. Below we countdown to Richard Stilgoe upcoming birthday.