Andrew Hansen to host Strictly Speaking

ahFormer Chaser comedian Andrew Hansen will front the new ABC TV public speaking series, Strictly Speaking.

Hansen is known for his satirical songs and character pieces on the The Chaser, sometimes attracting controversy, including for his Eulogy Song.

The 13 x half-hour show is a competition that searches for ‘Australia’s Best Public Speaker.’ Following its contestant call 1500 applications are being whittled down to 27 spots via 320 auditions.

“As the performing monkey of my family, I’ve been wheeled out at every wedding since infancy,” said Hansen.

“By some cosmic error I was made school captain. Very soon the staff realised what a mistake had been made, as I exploited my weekly speeches to air controversial opinions and make woeful jokes.

“Later I went to uni and dabbled in the debating scene there. I escaped quickly as it was a bit daunting and pretentious! For me, the best speeches are hugely entertaining and funny and moving – they’re the kinds of speeches you’ll see on Strictly Speaking.”

Amanda Duthie, ABC TV Head of Arts and Entertainment, said, “There is absolutely room for meaningful rhetoric and speech writing in the era of the sound-byte and that is what this show celebrates.”

Hansen’s post-Chaser hosting of the show follows from Chris Taylor’s presenting Australia’s Heritage: National Treasures.

The co-production between ABC TV and Southern Star Entertainment will begin shooting in Sydney in September to air in early 2010.


  1. Hey, don’t knock it before you see it!

    I think that getting a good comedian such as Andrew Hansen to host a show about public speaking would probably be good for the show itself.

    Hansen will undoubtedly bring colour to the what would probably be an otherwise dull show.

    I look forward to it.

  2. The show sounds fantastic at least it is original. And Hansen is a great choice. He can put some edge into what may first be perceived as a dull show- but I am actually really looking forward to seeing every day people who have written and will be presenting their speeches in their own manner and humour.

    As for the guy who said they ‘throw andrew the old crumb’ its called work. you would be surprised how many people in the tv industry overlap into different shows – networks and who produce as well as present.

  3. Andre Hanson is a most suitable host IMO – he has a highly unusual speaking manner himself, and a quick wit, which I’m sure this show will need…

  4. Great. We need a public speaking show brought to us by an old boy school captain from Sydney Grammar!

    Way to go with the diversity factor, ABC!

    This show is going to be full of painful salespeople, auctioneers and toastmasters from the local RSL who have all been told: ‘you’re a great public speaker’….shudder

  5. He left debating because it was pretentious? Coming from one of the most pretentious people on TV, this seems to be a shocking insight into the debating world.

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