|Years active 1986–present||Name John Sparkes|
|Born 9 January 1954 (age 61) (1954-01-09) Swansea, Wales|
Occupation Comedian, actor, voice actor
Movies and TV shows Shaun the Sheep, Shaun the Sheep Movie, Peppa Pig, Absolutely, Barry Welsh is Coming
Similar People Richard Starzak, Mark Burton, Morwenna Banks, Richard Ridings, Lily Snowden‑Fine
Notable work Fireman SamPeppa Pig
Pub quiz thespians vs lesbians frank hovis john sparkes
John Sparkes (born 9 January 1954) is a Welsh comedian, actor, voice actor and former English teacher and is more commonly known on Welsh television as Barry Welsh, in the award-winning (Best Light Entertainment, Welsh Baftas, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2004) series Barry Welsh is Coming. He also had major roles in Naked Video, Absolutely, Pub Quiz, and Jeff Global's Global Probe, and is the narrator of children's TV show Peppa Pig.
- Pub quiz thespians vs lesbians frank hovis john sparkes
- Pub quiz on tour brecon frank hovis john sparkes
- Early years
- Naked Video and Absolutely
- Barry Welsh
- Childrens TV
- Other work
Pub quiz on tour brecon frank hovis john sparkes
Sparkes was born in Swansea, Wales. He began his working life at Lloyds Bank in Mumbles. After a time as an English teacher, in the 1980s, he turned to comedy and moved to London, becoming an established performer in the first years of London’s alternative cabaret circuit alongside Alexi Sayle, Jo Brand, Paul Merton and Rick Mayall.
Naked Video and Absolutely
Sparkes starred in the sketch show Naked Video, where he played Siadwel, the geeky poet who wore an anorak and glasses. The character also appeared when Sparkes was part of the BBC Radio 4 comedy programme Bodgers, Banks & Sparkes. After killing off Siadwel in Naked Video, Sparkes revived the character in 2014 for a new series of radio shows for BBC Radio Wales, which was recommissioned a year later.
He was one of the team behind the Channel 4 sketch show Absolutely, which ran for four years between 1989 and 1993. Following an award-winning radio special, a new series for BBC Radio 4 was commissioned for broadcast in September 2015.
Barry Welsh is Coming was a long-running comedy series for ITV Wales. As well as playing Barry Welsh, the hapless host of a chat show, Sparkes also plays other characters within the programme, such as pub singer Gwyn, Old Mr Ffff and Fishguard news reporter Hugh Pugh. Although the series ended in 2004, it returned in 2007 for a series of one-off specials.
Throughout its original run, the series also won four BAFTA Cymru awards for Best Light Entertainment.
He provides the voice of the narrator and some other characters in the children's animated series Peppa Pig (in which the voice of fellow Absolutely star Morwenna Banks is also featured), in Shaun the Sheep he voices Bitzer the Dog and the Farmer. He also voices Mr. Elf and King Marigold in Ben and Holly's Little Kingdom. He also voices Professor von Proton in The Big Knights, Steven in A Town Called Panic, and Fireman Sam in the 2005 series.
In 2005 he performed at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in Absolutely Presents John Sparkes and Pete Baikie with his colleague from Absolutely.
For Welsh television he starred in Jeff Global's Global Probe (ITV Wales), and he resurrected the character Frank Hovis, originally devised for the Absolutely series, in Pub Quiz (BBC Wales).
Sparkes has written and presented three ongoing television series of Great Pubs of Wales for ITV Wales. He has voiced the unseen character of archivist Goronwy, in a section of Wallace and Gromit's World of Invention for BBC One and has written and presented Ghost Story in which he spent the night alone with a camcorder in haunted houses around Wales. He has also co-written and presented Doug Strong's Special Places, a factual comedy series for ITV Wales and ITV Central.