31 January 1971|
Dundrum, County Down, Northern Ireland
|Occupation||Comedian, television and radio presenter|
Patrick Kielty Almost Live|
Live at the Apollo
|Height||1.78 m (5 ft 10 in)|
|Spouse(s)||Cat Deeley (m. 2012)|
Patrick Kielty (born 31 January 1971) is a comedian and television personality from Northern Ireland.
Kielty was born in Downpatrick, Co Down, Northern Ireland, and grew up in the neighbouring village of Dundrum. He is one of three sons born to the businessman John "Jack" Kielty, who was shot dead on 25 January 1988 by the Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF), a cover name used by loyalist paramilitary group the Ulster Defence Association (UDA). John Kielty was to have been a key witness in Central Television's defence of a libel action brought by Jim Craig, who was suing the television company over a broadcast of The Cook Report which connected him to racketeering, and is said to have ordered John Kielty's murder.
Kielty began performing regularly while a pupil at St Patrick's Grammar School, Downpatrick, which holds an annual holiday concert. Kielty was persuaded to take part by a Games master who spotted his impersonations of local politicians, celebrities, and sportsmen. His professional career started while he was still a psychology student at Queen's University of Belfast called "The Empire Laughs Back", started by him and fellow student Jackie Hamilton, who went on to become a BBC producer. One routine performed a local gigs involved donning a balaclava and making spoof paramilitary pronouncements. In the early 1990s, Kielty won the Guinness Entertainer of the Year in INF Warrenpoint, an event fronted by Sean Mallon.[who?]
In 1993, Kielty presented the show SUS on UTV. He later became the warm-up act for a BBC Northern Ireland programme, Anderson on the Box, presented by local personality Gerry Anderson. When this show was axed, he presented its replacement, PK Tonight. Although this ran for only a year and was only shown in Northern Ireland, it did attract the attention of London-based broadcasters, winning him the "Best Newcomer" Award at the 1996 Royal Television Society Awards. In 1997, he set up the Belfast-based TV production company Green Inc with TV director Stephen Stewart, making shows such as The Afternoon Show, Patrick Kielty Almost Live, and Ask Rhod Gilbert. It was reported in 2010 that Kielty had sold his share in the company. Kielty graduated to presenting programmes such as Last Chance Lottery and Patrick Kielty Almost Live, broadcast throughout the UK. Alcoholic former football star George Best later gave his first TV interview following his liver transplant to Kielty on the same show.
From 2001 to 2003, Kielty hosted 14 episodes of the comedy game show Stupid Punts. He also presented a series of After The Break. He did an impersonation of Martin McGuinness (who bore some superficial visual resemblance to Art Garfunkel) singing the Simon and Garfunkel song, "Bridge over Troubled Water". Kielty continued to appear on national television, mostly light-entertainment shows such as the BBC's Fame Academy, Comic Relief Does Fame Academy and Love Island for ITV in both 2005 and 2006. On June 21, 2003 Kielty hosted the Opening Ceremony of the Special Olympics in Croke Park, Dublin, to a reported global audience of 800 million viewers. Other participants included Nelson Mandela, Mohammed Ali, and U2. In 2006, he hosted a segment on ITV's coverage of The Prince's Trust 30th Birthday LIVE alongside Kate Thornton. He hosted the original pilot series of the American version of Deal or No Deal for ABC in early 2004. However, ABC decided against airing the series, which ended up on NBC, with Canadian comedian Howie Mandel as host.
In 2006, Kielty returned to the stand-up scene with a new UK tour. A DVD, filmed at Belfast's Grand Opera House, was later released. In 2007, he began work at the Trafalgar Theatre in London’s West End on the UK production of A Night in November, written by Northern Irish dramatist Marie Jones (Stones in His Pockets). He debuted in the play at the Grand Opera House in Belfast.
In 2007, he also guested on the BBC's third series of Live at the Apollo. On 18 May 2007, Kielty was invited to conduct a joint in-depth TV interview at 10 Downing Street in London with UK Prime Minister Tony Blair and Irish Taoiseach Bertie Ahearn to discuss the Northern Ireland peace process. He hosted the Saturday morning show on BBC Radio 2 which started on 24 July 2010 and it ran for 10 weeks. Kielty presented Sport Relief in 2010 and 2012 alongside Fearne Cotton.
In 2012, he co-presented This Morning, alongside Kate Thornton for one episode and Emma Willis for three episodes. In 2014 and 2015, Patrick guest hosted a few episodes of The One Show alongside Alex Jones.
In 2016 Kielty returned to BBC Northern Ireland to present programmes, including the comedy panel game show Bad Language alongside Susan Calman and Paul Sinha. He then hosted television documentary Patrick Kielty's Mulholland Drive which focused on the life of William Mullholland and the California Water Wars. Kielty also reflected on his relatives' work in the Northern Irish water industry. In March 2016 he began hosting a chat show for BBC NI called Delete, Delete, Delete looking at celebrities' internet history.
In 2018, Kielty presented a documentary, My Dad, the Peace Deal and Me for BBC Two. The programme, coinciding with the 20th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement explored the state of Northern Ireland two decades on from the Agreement. Kielty discussed the killing of his father and the effect it had on him, as well as his decision to vote Yes to the Agreement in a referendum, even though it would result in the release from jail of his father's killers. He also interviewed former paramilitary activists from both sides of the struggle, DUP leader Arlene Foster, school students at an integrated (non-denominational) school and a man who was blinded as a small boy by a rubber bullet fired by a British soldier, whom he later befriended.
In January 2015, US Country star Garth Brooks gave his first UK interview to Kielty for a BBC Radio 2 special from Boston, Massachusetts.
Kielty performed in the play A Night in November in August 2007 in the Grand Opera House, Belfast, and also in productions in London and in 2008 in the Olympia Theatre, Dublin. A Documentary about the production of the play starring Kielty was released in 2008.
Kielty has participated in every incarnation of Soccer Aid so far. He plays for the 'Rest of The World' team as a goalkeeper and is typically substituted onto the field at the beginning of the second half.
After co-presenting Sport Relief on two occasions in 2010 and 2012, Kielty's participation in 2015's Comic Relief telethon was confirmed when British boy band One Direction tweeted a short clip announcing who would be playing them in a 'No Direction' tribute for Red Nose Day. Kielty, who impersonated Niall Horan, directed the skit in which comedians Jack Dee played Louis Tomlinson, Nick Helm became Zayn Malik, Vic Reeves took on Harry Styles and Johnny Vegas transformed into Liam Payne.