- Category : Entertainment-Radio-D.J.-Announcer
- Type : GP
- Profile : 4/6 - Opportunistic / Role Model
- Definition : Split - Small (10,14,44)
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Service 1
English-born Australian radio and television personality, a game show host and singer. Barber is best known in Australia as the showbiz stalwart who hosted Channel Nine's "Sale of the Century" for eleven record-breaking years. He was awarded the Order of Australia in 1991.
Born in 1940 to a working-class family, Tony was a kid during dreary and frightening war years when a loving Irish grand mom and a local environment of relatives kept up jolly good spirits. He was seven when the family moved to Australia where he survived the rigors of Catholic school and seven years training to be a Royal Australian Naval Officer. Tony played rugger at Twickenham for the Navy and got his first taste of show biz as a cadet announcer at Radio 6GE in Geraldton, West Australia, in 1961. By the end of 1962 he was Perth's leading DJ as well as the star of the Charles Hotel floor Show and two nights a week at the Lido Coral Room doing Johnny Mathis and Paul Anka impressions.
Through the mid-‘60s Tony sharpened his talent and wit in talent shows, host gigs and club vocalist while keeping up his day job as an ad executive. Through the latter, he cast himself in an ad that gained national attention, the "Cambridge Whistler," the central character in a TV cigarette commercial. TV mogul Bruce Gyngell, directing Network 7 "Revolution" at that time, saw the ad and proposed Tony as Host for the daytime show "Temptation." It was a hit and from this first heady success, he became Australian TV's quiz king for the next two decades.
Barber’s TV credits include hosting "Great Temptation," 1969-74, "Name That Tune," 1971-74, "Family Feud," 1977-80, "Sale of the Century," 1980-91, "Jeopardy," 1992 and "Wheel of Fortune," 1996. He has hosted about 8,500 individual episodes of successful Grundy game shows, received a Gold Logie (Australia's premier television award), made a series of Gold Albums for R.C.A. and performed sell-out concerts all round the country.
During the ‘90s, Barber branched into new approaches to TV entertainment. His show "Who Am I," which made its debut in 1997, is a one-man musical biography, holding box office records in theatres along the eastern seaboard. The show has played in over three hundred venues to over a quarter of a million patrons. As a Corporate Consultant, he has arranged everything from seminars to product knowledge briefings, entertainment, hosting travel groups on overseas holidays and preparing and presenting pitches for advertising agencies and sales corporations.
As of 2001, Tony Barber resides in Malvern, Victoria, has been happily married to Helen for 28 years and has two daughters Kelly (27, an Art Director) & Jacqueline (25, a part time Actress), plus Ben the corgi. His hobbies include golf, swimming, skiing, tennis, and horse-riding. He is an avid reader, cinema and theatergoer and is a "computer semi-literate" host of his own website.
His autobiography, "Who Am I?" - a well-told, charming and often funny account of a full life - was released in April 2001.