Peter Kay is an English comedian from
Inspired by Chris Morris, and contemporary with Ricky
Gervais, his television comedy is characterised by
a social realist documentary style, with an influence
from music hall, and the surrealism of Vic and Bob.
After a fluke entry into the So You Think You're Funny
contest which he won in 1997, he took his hour long
show to the Edinburgh Fringe where he was nominated
for the Perrier Award.
His TV series include a one-off episode of The Comedy
Lab called The Services, the spoof-documentary series
That Peter Kay Thing, Max and Paddy's Road to Nowhere
and two series of Phoenix Nights (co-written with Dave
Spikey and Neil Fitzmaurice). Kay appears as three
characters in the show, a wheelchair-bound club owner
Brian Potter, a bouncer Max and as a fire officer Keith
Lard. He also appeared with Alan Partridge (played
by Steve Coogan) on BBC's Comic Relief.
In 2002, Kay featured in television advertisements
for John Smith's beer, through which his catchphrase
- "'Ave it!" or "Just 'ave it!" -
gained popular notoriety.
In 2003, he was listed in The Observer as one of
the 50 funniest acts in British comedy. In a 2005 poll
to find The Comedian's Comedian, he was voted amongst
the top 50 greatest comedy acts ever by fellow comedians
and comedy insiders. In March 2005 he also came top
in a survey of 10,000 people by the Jongleurs comedy
club to find Britain's favourite comedian.
He had a cameo role in Coronation Street in January
2004. November 2004 saw the launch of the spin-off
series Max and Paddy's Road to Nowhere in which Kay
reprised his role as Phoenix Nights' bouncer Max.
He has also released several live DVDs including
Live at The Top of the Tower and Live At The Bolton
Kay's film appearances have included roles in 24
Hour Party People (2002) and The League of Gentlemen's
Kay promoted the re-release of Tony Christie's 1971
hit Is This the Way to Amarillo on 14 March 2005, for
the charity Comic Relief. The song was made famous
after Max and Paddy did a sing-along in a scene in
Phoenix Nights. They made appearances in a new promotional
video, along with Brian Potter and Kay himself. On
Sunday, 20 March 2005, the single reached number one
in the UK Singles Charts, and stayed there for 7 consecutive
At the British Academy of Film and Television tribute
to comedian and actor Ronnie Barker in December 2004,
Kay spoke of the influence he had drawn from Barker
in his own work.
Kay's childhood ambition was to be a bin man. He
married Susan in 2001 and has one son, Charlie, who
was born in 2004.