Australia’s media and entertainment industries are in mourning after the death of colourful TV and radio personality Bert Newton, aged 83.
Newton died in his hometown of Melbourne on Saturday evening while undergoing palliative care, according to media reports, with entertainment reporter and longtime friend Peter Ford breaking the news on Twitter last night.
I have very sad news ….
Showbiz icon Bert Newton has died at age 83.
It was remarkable career on TV, stage & radio. Sadly he didn’t get the last chapter he deserved. He was a great mentor & friend to me.
Condolences to Patti,Lauren,Matthew & extended family.
— Peter Ford (@mrpford) October 30, 2021
Newton entertained audiences on TV screens, stages and radio waves for more than 60 years.
He began his media career in the 1950s as a radio announcer in Melbourne, before going on to make a name for himself in the Aussie TV industry as a presenter and entertainer.
Newton was best known for his stints with Nine and Network 10, where he was involved in shows such as Melbourne Tonight, New Faces, Good Morning Australia, 20 to 1 and Bert’s Family Feud.
His collaborations with fellow TV personalities Graham Kennedy and Don Lane, along with his wife, singer Patti Newton, are forever etched in Australia’s entertainment archives.
Newton hosted the Logie Awards ceremony on 17 occasions and won four Gold Logies of his own, as well as being inducted into the Logie Hall of Fame.
He is survived by wife Patti, and his two children, Lauren and Matthew.
Tributes continue to flow from all corners of Australia’s media and entertainment industry on social media following Newton’s death.
Bert Newton was the best.Years ago when my friend&comedy colleague Lynda Gibson was dying of cancer we had a fundraising comedy ‘roast’ for her.Bert turned up @ HiFi bar in Melb&paid homage by removing his ‘rumoured’ toupee & revealing his total baldness. It meant the world to us
— Denise Scott (@_denisescott) October 30, 2021
What a loss. There was no one quite like the great Bert Newton. To have lost him at 83 is still too soon, because he’s truly irreplaceable. Brilliant, cheeky, generous, kind. Sending deepest condolences to his beloved Patti, Lauren, Matthew and his treasured grandkids. Vale. 💔
— Angela Bishop (@AngelaBishop) October 30, 2021
Sorry to hear of the death of Bert Newton. We were work colleagues on Network Ten mornings for years. I was often the fall guy , his quick wit amazing. What a legend. My deepest sympathy to Patty and the family.
— Paul Bongiorno (@PaulBongiorno) October 30, 2021
I don’t know that I’m ready to accept this yet. Today I lost a mentor and friend, our country lost an icon, but most importantly a family has lost their hero and soul mate. Sending love to all the Newtons, especially Patti. My heart is broken. Rest In Power, Albert Watson Newton. pic.twitter.com/lzp3AaG51T
— Rove McManus (@Rove) October 30, 2021
I am sobbing and absolutely heartbroken that my darling friend Bert has passed. He was a loyal, wonderful & kind man who supported me my entire career through good and bad times. He was an absolute icon . There will never be another Bert. Rest In Peace darling man – I love you xx pic.twitter.com/WKk7SKh960
— Rhonda Burchmore (@rhondaburchmore) October 30, 2021
If you've never seen this Bert Newton clip of a yard glass drinking competition going exactly where a yard glass drinking competition is likely to go, well, you're welcome. What a total pro. Plus bonus @mrtonymartin. pic.twitter.com/Fv5KOJdAe3
— Mark Humphries (@markhumphries) October 30, 2021
This is such sad news for any Australian. Bert Newton was the ultimate entertainer. Australian TV wouldn’t be what it is without Bert. It’s up to us all to take what he taught us, and keep his spirit alive. Enormous love to his family. Take a bow, Bert. You deserve the applause. https://t.co/FyE10m1Jdy
— Adam Hills (@adamhillscomedy) October 30, 2021
Noo Bert Newton. He was always so friendly & hilarious. One day at an 11 am media screening of a film he sat next to me & Rove. He pulled out some champagne & handed me two glasses. He said ‘that’s for you, that’s for Rove and fuck the rest of them.’ RIP Bert, champers in heaven!
— Dave O'Neil (@itsdaveoneil) October 30, 2021
This week just gets sadder with the passing of Aust. TV icon Bert Newton.I had the absolute honour of sharing a stage on occasion with Bert & was able to step back& watch a star at work.The void he leaves behind is immeasurable. Our condolences to Patti&family,RIP Bert. Jan&Burgo
— John Burgess (@thejohnburgess) October 30, 2021
In a world full of change, Patti and Bert remain one of Australia’s enduring love stories ❤️
Bert Newton was the kindest and most nurturing person that I’ve come across in my career.
— Marcia Hines (@TheMarciaHines) October 30, 2021
Bert Newton was so brilliant, so wickedly funny and so lovely – we were lucky to have him on our screens for so long in so many incarnations. Perhaps we should rename the Logies “the Berts” after him so they mean more than they do now – they were, after all, very much his night.
— Dom Knight (@domknight) October 30, 2021
Never got to meet #BertNewton but he was generous enough to offer me a reply when I was a kid seeking advice on how to break into TV and journalism. A simple acknowledgment, that went a long way, and made me feel seen #Bert pic.twitter.com/9q8i5GnUnD
— Ricardo Gonçalves (@BUSINESSricardo) October 30, 2021
Bert Newton would do anything to get a laugh, and bring joy to TV audiences.
This wonderful collection of some of his best moments was compiled by my @3AW693 colleague @SimonOMelb #RIPBert https://t.co/AQ1CEp2QWt
— Dee Dee Dunleavy (@DeeDeeDunleavy) October 30, 2021
So very sad to hear of the legend Bert Newtown passing away. Bert thank you for all you did to entertain Australia! A genuinely talented all rounder, you did it all . End of an era. pic.twitter.com/dBYtGOCVYw
— Anthony Field (@Anthony_Wiggle) October 30, 2021
Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Victorian Premier Dan Andrews also paid tribute to Newton on social media, with the latter confirming that a state funeral will be held “to honour his memory, his talent and his achievements”.
— Scott Morrison (@ScottMorrisonMP) October 30, 2021
Bert was an icon.
He lived his life on the silver screen and we welcomed his wit and humour into our homes for decades.
Our thoughts and prayers are with Patti, Bert's children and grandchildren.
Vale Bert Newton. pic.twitter.com/A3tFrJ8Bc5
— Dan Andrews (@DanielAndrewsMP) October 30, 2021
Featured image source: Wikimedia Commons/Eva Rinaldi