The very last Collectors

Next week's episode of Collectors will end a seven year run on the ABC.

Next week’s episode of Collectors will end its seven year run on the ABC.

The show was not renewed for 2012 and will be replaced by Auction Room hosted by William McInnes.

Rhonda Burchmore appears in the final episode, but hosts Claudia, Adrian and Gordon will also look back on the year’s  array of collections.

Tonight on Collectors we bring on the brass and blow the trumpet for the last program of the year. We sing and dance with musical theatre queen Rhonda Burchmore, who comes out of the closet as a Barbie collector, start the ignition on some practical but pretty tractors and revere the work of a National Living Treasure.

John Foster has been playing this high class plumbing since he was twelve and now has a mellifluous and brassy collection that ranges from 19th century cornets, a cornopean, an 1830 bugle and any number of trumpets. Whether it’s big band, classical, baroque or swing there is always the versatile trumpet to be heard, and John loves nothing more than to draw a good breath and blow on the brass.

From London’s West End to Australia’s Mamma Mia, glamorous Rhonda Burchmore has been on the stage since she was two, and now her secret is out! Showbiz Barbies are her weakness, whether it’s Cher, Elizabeth Taylor or Elvis. It’s the glitz and glamour of limited-edition designer costumed Barbies that she loves to collect and they have even been the inspiration for her own costumes! Not everyone can claim to be a Barbie doll, but Rhonda can. Yes, Mattel made a special edition ‘Rhonda’ Mamma Mia doll just for her. It takes pride of place in her growing and OTT collection.

It’s not a lycra jumpsuit but overalls that Bill Shanley wears, and it is a tractor key that turns him on. Although he drives them on his farm all week, it doesn’t stop him from wanting to play with his machines again at the weekend! When it comes to tinkering with his Chamberlain 60 DA, 55KA, Nuffield or John Deere, Bill reckons it’s time well spent. He’ll light up the shed at night when the days aren’t long enough just to spend a few more hours breathing life back into his sleeping work-horses. These mechanical farm hands don’t have to be smartly restored machines to be collectable. Bill says a tractor can be just as valuable with its well-worn working clothes on!

Adrian is a serious collector of contemporary Australian ceramics and didn’t want to miss the opportunity of meeting one of Australia’s great potters before he leaves Hobart. Les Blakebrough is a master of the potter’s wheel and is one of Australian craft’s National Living Treasures. He has been working in the ceramic studios of the Tasmanian School of Art since 1973, and now he is moving on. Japanese craftsmen and nature have been his teachers and ceramic collectors look out for the calligraphic decoration of his early domestic ware. His trademark has become the stunning fine translucent white ‘Southern Ice’ porcelain that he developed in recent years. His elegant and refined one-off studio pieces are sought after by connoisseurs through galleries around the country.

Find out which of our three is the auction big spender this year, and from fabulous MONA to wooden boats and Kelly country to specialised scissors, gliders, gilt frames, watches, wallpaper and games, Claudia, Adrian and Gordon wave the flag with nostalgia to some of the best from 2011.

8pm Friday September 23rd on ABC1.

8 Responses

  1. Terrific show, very sad to see it go — I used to go pubs in Melbourne that would have this show on, with a barroom full of people watching, and then go straight into the Ch. 7 AFL game of that night — it was almost a tradition as for every segment on ceramics or antique furniture, there would be some story on a collector with “Star Wars” memorabilia or some guy who collected hammers or weird farm machinery — those stories always set the crowds off, as did the ‘mystery object’ and the auction room competition they had.

    I hope this auction spinoff show will be a success — if they had the ‘Collectors’ cast on hand, it might do well.

  2. My 12yo son and I will miss it too. We rarely miss an episode and just about every week the show finishes and he says “I think I want to start a collection of …”

    I’m fearful of the ABC’s recent axings. A lot of really good intelligent shows are going to be replaced with what?

  3. Sad to see it go. When the ABC is so strapped that it can’t afford to fund a relatively cheap show like ‘Collectors’ something’s seriously amiss. My parents are pretty cheesed off about the lawn bowls, as well.

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