Adams speaking at the
2010 Global Atheist Convention
Phillip Andrew Hedley Adams
12 July 1939
|Residence||Hunter Valley, New South Wales|
|Occupation||Film producer; journalist; broadcaster; former advertising executive|
|Known for||Revival of Australian cinema; |
|Spouse(s)||Rosemary Fawcett (div.)|
Phillip Andrew Hedley Adams AO FAHA FRSA (born 12 July 1939) is an Australian humanist,social commentator, broadcaster, public intellectual and farmer. He hosts Late Night Live , an Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) program on Radio National four nights a week. He also writes a weekly column for The Weekend Australian .
The Order of Australia is an order of chivalry established on 14 February 1975 by Elizabeth II, Queen of Australia, to recognise Australian citizens and other persons for achievement or meritorious service. Before the establishment of the order, Australian citizens received British honours.
The Australian Academy of the Humanities was established by Royal Charter in 1969 to advance scholarship and public interest in the humanities in Australia. It operates as an independent not-for-profit organisation partly funded by the Australian government.
The Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA) is a London-based, British organisation committed to finding practical solutions to social challenges. Founded in 1754 by William Shipley as the Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce, it was granted a Royal Charter in 1847, and the right to use the term Royal in its name by King Edward VII in 1908. The shorter version, The Royal Society of Arts and the related RSA acronym, are used more frequently than the full name.
Adams has had careers in advertising and film production and has served on many non-profit boards including Wikileaks,Greenpeace Australia, Ausflag, Care Australia, Film Victoria, National Museum of Australia, both the Adelaide and Brisbane festivals of ideas, the Montsalvat Arts Society and the Don Dunstan Foundation.
Ausflag is an organization that was established to promote a new flag of Australia.
Film Victoria is a statutory authority of the State Government of Victoria, Australia that provides strategic leadership and assistance for film, television, and digital media production in the Australian state of Victoria.
The National Museum of Australia, in the national capital Canberra, preserves and interprets Australia's social history, exploring the key issues, people and events that have shaped the nation. It was formally established by the National Museum of Australia Act 1980.
Adams has been appointed both a member and subsequently an officer of the Order of Australia; and he has received numerous awards including six honorary doctorates from Australian universities; Republican of the Year 2005; the Senior ANZAC Fellowship; the Australian Humanist of the Year, the Golden Lion at Cannes; the Longford Award; a Walkley Award; and the Henry Lawson Australian Arts Award. In 1997 the International Astronomical Union named a minor planet orbiting the sun between Mars and Jupiter after him.A National Trust poll elected him one of Australia's 100 national living treasures.
The Golden Lion is the highest prize given to a film at the Venice Film Festival. The prize was introduced in 1949 by the organizing committee and is now regarded as one of the film industry's most prestigious and distinguished prizes. In 1970, a second Golden Lion was introduced; this is an honorary award for people who have made an important contribution to cinema.
The International Astronomical Union is an international association of professional astronomers, at the PhD level and beyond, active in professional research and education in astronomy. Among other activities, it acts as the internationally recognized authority for assigning designations and names to celestial bodies and any surface features on them.
The National Trust of Australia, officially the Australian Council of National Trusts (ACNT), is the Australian national peak body for community-based, non-government non-profit organisations committed to promoting and conserving Australia's indigenous, natural and historic heritage.
Adams was born in Maryborough, Victoria, the only child of Congregational Church minister, the Reverend Charles Adams. His childhood was anything but idyllic and his parents separated when he was young. Interviewed in 2006, Adams said that:
Maryborough is a small town in Victoria, Australia, located on the Pyrenees Highway, 58 kilometres (36 mi) north of Ballarat, 168 kilometres (104 mi) north-west of Melbourne, in the Shire of Central Goldfields. At the 2016 census, Maryborough had a population of 7,921.
My first memories were my mother... absolutely dependent on the begging bowl – that little round dish with a piece of cloth at the bottom where parishioners would put a couple of bob. When dad went off to the war, I was taken up by my grandparents... and lived on a dirt-poor farm... I lived in penury for the first 10, 15 years of my life. ... Mother dumped [my father] in favour of a rather sleazy businessman ... a sociopath who tried to murder me ... I spent my latter part of my childhood trying to protect my mother from this psycho.
Of his education he has said: "I was forced to leave school before completing my secondary education and the only job I could get was working in advertising."
Adams joined the Australian Communist Party [ citation needed ]at age 16, whilst employed in advertising, but left at age 19. He has often compared dogmatic belief in communism to dogmatic belief in Roman Catholicism.
The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with approximately 1.3 billion baptised Catholics worldwide as of 2017. As the world's oldest continuously functioning international institution, it has played a prominent role in the history and development of Western civilisation. The church is headed by the Bishop of Rome, known as the pope. Its central administration, the Holy See, is in the Vatican City, an enclave within the city of Rome in Italy.
Adams began his advertising career with Briggs & James and, later, with Brian Monahan and Lyle Dayman, became a partner in the agency Monahan Dayman Adams. They took that company to a successful public listing and Adams became a millionaire in the process.[ citation needed ] He developed successful campaigns such as Life. Be in it. , Slip, Slop, Slap , Break down the Barriers' for the International Year of the Disabled Person and Care for Kids for the International Year of the Child, working with talent such as Fred Schepisi, Alex Stitt, Peter Best, Robyn Archer and Mimmo Cozzolino. Adams left the advertising industry in the 1980s. Monahan Dayman Adams purchased the successful Sydney agency MoJo in 1987 and carried on as MojoMDA. Its lineage can today be traced to Publicis Mojo, an Australian subsidiary of the French multinational advertising and communications company holding Publicis Groupe.[ citation needed ]
He wrote regular columns for The Age , The Australian, the Sydney Morning Herald, the National Times, Nation Review, the Courier Mail, the Adelaide Advertiser, the Launceston Examiner, Australian Business, The Bulletin and was a contributor to the New York Times, the Financial Times and The Times of London. He currently writes a weekly column for The Australian.
Adams played a key role in the revival of the Australian film industry during the 1970s.He was the author of a 1969 report which led to legislation by Prime Minister John Gorton in 1970 for an Australian Film and Television Development Corporation (later the Australian Film Commission) and the Experimental Film Fund.
Together with Barry Jones, Adams was a motivating force behind the Australian Film Television and Radio School which was established under the Whitlam government. [ citation needed ]Adams played a key role in the development of the South Australian Film Corporation, which was created in 1972 and became a model for similar bodies in other Australian states; and in the establishment of the Australia Council and the Australian Film Development Corporation, later known as the Australian Film Commission, the Film Finance Corporation Australia, and Screen Australia. As head of delegation to the Cannes Film Festival, Adams signed Australia's first co-production agreements with France and the UK. He was Chairman of the Australian Film Institute, the Film and Television Board of the Australia Council, the Australian Film Commission, and Film Australia. He helped establish the Australian Caption Service, which provides services for hearing-impaired television viewers – and the Travelling Film Festival to take quality films into rural areas.
In the 1960s Adams co-wrote, co-produced and co-directed (as well as serving as cinematographer for) his first feature film Jack and Jill: A Postscript (1969); the first feature to win the AFI Award,and the first Australian film to win the Grand Prix at an international festival.
Adams produced or co-produced other features including the critically panned but hugely popular film adaptation of Barry Humphries' The Adventures of Barry McKenzie , directed by Bruce Beresford, which became the most successful Australian film ever made up to that time. Other films include The Naked Bunyip , Don's Party , The Getting of Wisdom , Lonely Hearts, We of the Never Never , Grendel Grendel Grendel , Fighting Back, Hearts and Minds and Abra Cadabra .
Adams initially presented a late-night program on Sydney commercial radio station 2UE during the late 1980s and early 1990s before succeeding Virginia Bell in 1991 as presenter of ABC Radio National's Late Night Live, interviewing guests on a wide range of topics including politics, science, philosophy, history and culture. Late Night Live is broadcast across Australia on ABC Radio National, as well as on Radio Australia and the Internet. The program is broadcast live from 22:00 AEST/ADST and is repeated the following day at 16:00 AEST/ADST.A serious discussion of world issues, the program is tempered with Adams' gentle and ironic humour. Regular contributors include Bruce Shapiro and Beatrix Campbell.
At times, Adams refers tongue-in-cheek to his listeners as "the listener" or "Gladys", as though he had only one listener; he also refers to listeners collectively as "Gladdies". In more recent years, Adams has begun introducing the show saying "Good evening Gladdies and Poddies", in reference to the show's growing podcast listener base.
The current theme music is the first movement of Brescianello's violin concerto no. 4 in e-minor, Op. 1. Until March 2016 the theme was a short extract from the Eliza Aria from the Wild Swans ballet by Elena Kats-Chernin Wild Swans Concert Suite , performed by the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra with soprano Jane Sheldon, chosen in 2010. From 2007 to 2010, the theme music was Kats-Chernin's "Russian Rag", which Adams humorously refers to as "The Waltz of the Wombat". The previous music was Bach's Concerto for oboe, violin and orchestra in C minor, BWV 1060: III. Allegro.
In 2007, a claim Adams had made on Late Night Live was questioned by the ABC's Media Watch program following an interview with filmmaker Anna Broinowski.During the interview with Broinowski, Adams had described a previous interview he had done with author Helen Dale as one of his "most chilling experiences" which had made his "blood freeze". Following Adams' claim, Dale lodged a complaint with the ABC to advise them she had never been on Late Night Live nor had she ever been interviewed by Adams. After the validity of his claim was questioned, Adams admitted he had been mistaken but insisted he had met Dale at some point in time, but had seemingly made no impression on her. Media Watch presenter Monica Attard questioned why Adams escalated a vague chance encounter to a "chilling" interview.
In 2010, in a broad and lengthy criticism of the ABC's handling of live breaking news following the 2010 Labor leadership spill, Media Watch presenter Jonathan Holmes accused Adams of "sheer insouciance".Holmes criticised Adams for largely ignoring the overthrow of an Australian prime minister on his program, despite it being broadcast live as events unfolded. Apart from two brief mentions of the spill, Adams ignored the story preferring to have a 20-minute discussion about Kyrgyzstan, following by a conversation with a guest about cooking. Holmes accused Adams of being blithe and asked why Adams would bother hosting a live radio program if live breaking news of major events was to be ignored.
Adams was the foundation chairman of the Commission for the Future, [ citation needed ] He chaired the National Australia Day Council; whose principal task was to choose the Australian of the Year.established by the Hawke government to build bridges between science and the community. In 1988 the Commission won a major United Nations award for educating Australia on the issue of greenhouse and climate change.
Adams was the inaugural chair for the Australian Centre for Social Innovation, established by the South Australian government, and chaired the advisory board for the Centre for the Mind at the University of Sydney and the Australian National University. He has been a board member of Greenpeace, CARE Australia, the National Museum of Australia, The Australian Centre for Social Innovation, the Adelaide Festival of Ideas and Brisbane's Ideas Festival. He was co-founder of the Australian Skeptics.
Adams is the author or editor of more than 20 books, including The Unspeakable Adams, Adams Versus God, The Penguin Book of Australian Jokes, Retreat from Tolerance, Talkback and A Billion Voices, Adams Ark, and, with Lee Burton, Emperors of the Air.
Robert Manne has described Adams as "the emblematic figurehead of the pro-Labor left intelligentsia".Adams had a close relationship with every Labor leader from Gough Whitlam to Kevin Rudd, advising on public relations, advertising and policy issues. In 2010, Adams resigned from the Labor Party after Rudd was defeated as the Leader of the Labor Party at the 2010 Labor leadership spill.
In 1995 Adams argued against Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act 1975, saying that a better response to expressions of racial hatred was "public debate, not legal censure".
Australia's security intelligence organisation kept an extensive ASIO File on Adams. The file began at about the time he turned 16 years of age.
Adams is married to Patrice Newell. He has four daughters: three with his first wife, Rosemary Fawcett, and one with Newell. He lives on "Elmswood", a large property near Gundy in the Hunter Region in mid-northern New South Wales. He and his wife grow garlic and olives, and farm organically fed cattle. He has a home in Paddington, an inner suburb of Sydney. Prior to this, Adams lived for some time in "Stoneleigh", a heritage-listed housein Darlinghurst. Adams is a collector of rare antiquities, including Egyptian, Roman and Greek sculptures and artifacts.
He has written "I'd been an atheist since I was five."
In 1979 a portrait of Adams by artist Wes Walters won the Archibald Prize.
Peter Joshua Sculthorpe was an Australian composer. Much of his music resulted from an interest in the music of Australia's neighbours as well as from the impulse to bring together aspects of native Australian music with that of the heritage of the West. He was known primarily for his orchestral and chamber music, such as Kakadu (1988) and Earth Cry (1986), which evoke the sounds and feeling of the Australian bushland and outback. He also wrote 18 string quartets, using unusual timbral effects, works for piano, and two operas. He stated that he wanted his music to make people feel better and happier for having listened to it. He typically avoided the dense, atonal techniques of many of his contemporary composers. His work was often distinguished by its distinctive use of percussion.
Bruce Beresford is an Australian film director who has made more than 30 feature films over a 50-year career. Notable films he has directed include Breaker Morant (1980), Tender Mercies (1983), Crimes of the Heart (1986) and Driving Miss Daisy (1989).
David James Stratton AM is an English-Australian award-winning film critic, as both a journalist and interviewer, film historian and lecturer and television personality and producer.
Karl Kruszelnicki ; often referred to as "Dr Karl", is an Australian science communicator and populariser, who is known as an author, and as a science commentator on Australian radio and television.
Robert James Ellis was an Australian writer, journalist, filmmaker, and political commentator. He was a student at the University of Sydney at the same time as other notable Australians including Clive James, Germaine Greer, Les Murray, John Bell, Ken Horler, Robert Hughes and Mungo McCallum. He lived in Sydney with the author and screenwriter Anne Brooksbank; they had three children.
Andrew Christopher Denton is an Australian television producer, comedian, Gold Logie-nominated television presenter and former radio host, and was the host of the ABC's weekly television interview program Enough Rope and the ABC game show Randling. He is known for his comedy and interviewing technique. He is also responsible for introducing the troupe of The Chaser to Australian audiences.
The Doug Anthony All Stars were an Australian musical comedy, alternative rock and vocal group who initially performed together between 1984 and 1994. The group were an acoustic trio, originally comprising Paul McDermott and Tim Ferguson on main vocals and Richard Fidler on guitar and backing vocals. The group reformed in 2014, with Paul Livingston replacing Fidler on guitar.
Stan Grant is an Australian television news and political journalist, and television presenter for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. He is currently the ABC's indigenous and international affairs analyst and professor of global affairs at Griffith University in Queensland, Australia.
Donald Vernon Burrows AO MBE is an Australian jazz and swing musician, a multi-instrumentalist who is best known for playing the clarinet, but also plays the saxophone and flute. For his contribution to the arts he had a supper club named for him at The Regent Hotel in Sydney, Australia.
Catherine Elizabeth Grenville is an Australian author. She has published fifteen books, including fiction, non-fiction, biography, and books about the writing process. In 2001, she won the Orange Prize for The Idea of Perfection, and in 2006 she won the Commonwealth Writers' Prize for The Secret River. The Secret River was also shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize.
Richard Fidler is an Australian radio presenter and writer, best known for his hour-long interview program, Conversations with Richard Fidler on the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC). The program is ABC Radio's most popular podcast, downloaded more than three million times per month. It features local and international guests from all walks of life, engaging in in-depth interviews.
Christopher John Koch AO was an Australian novelist, known for his 1978 novel The Year of Living Dangerously, which was adapted into an award-winning film. He twice won the Miles Franklin Award. In 1995, he was made an Officer of the Order of Australia for his contribution to Australian literature, and was awarded an honorary Doctor of Letters from his alma mater, the University of Tasmania, in 1990.
Reginald Dawson Livermore is an Australian actor, singer, theatrical performer and former television presenter.
Angela Catterns, is an Australian media personality and broadcaster. Mostly known for her work on Australian radio, she has presented Mornings on Triple J, the National Evening Show on ABC Local Radio, and Breakfast on 702 ABC Sydney. She is also a podcaster, writer, interviewer, MC, facilitator, narrator & voice over artist. She presented with Australian humourist and broadcaster Wendy Harmer a holiday season version of the Breakfast Show on 702 ABC Sydney.
Anne Barbara Deveson was an Australian writer, broadcaster, filmmaker and social commentator, who also worked in England.
Late Night Live is a radio program broadcast by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation's Radio National and podcast and streamed over the World Wide Web.
Philip Sutton Cox is an Australian architect. Cox is the founding partner of COX Architects, one of the largest architectural practices in Australia.
Caroline Jones AO is an Australian radio and television journalist and television and media personality and social commentator, with a career in the industry spanning over 50 years.
Norman Swan is a Scottish Australian physician, journalist and broadcaster.
The 24th Australian Film Institute Awards were held at the Regent Theatre, in Sydney, New South Wales on 16 September 1981. Presented by the Australian Film Institute (AFI), the awards celebrated the best in Australian feature film, documentary and short film productions of 1981. The ceremony was televised in Australia on ABC for the third year running, with John Bluthal presiding over the event.