Alistair McGowan is probably best known to British audiences for The Big Impression which was, for four years, one of BBC1’s top-rating comedy programmes – winning numerous awards, including a BAFTA in 2003.
After graduation from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 1989, Alistair began working as a stand-up comic and was soon a regular at London’s Comedy Store and appeared at The Edinburgh Festival and on the 1996 Royal Variety Show. 2009 saw him return to stand-up and embark on his first solo National tour. He then went on to appear on Live At The Apollo.
From 1992 – 1996, he provided the voices for many of the characters on Spitting Image. He was a regular feature on Radio 4 shows including: Weekending, The Harpoon and he co-wrote and starred in four series of The Game’s Up (a satirical sports show) on Radio Five. He returned to Radio 4 in 2009 to play the Lord of Darkness in Elvin Quest.
In 2010 he appeared on radio in Goldfinger with Ian McKellen, Final Demands with Tom Conti, The Alex Lowe Double Act, The Sharp End, Look Away Now, Continuty and at the Radio Five Live World Cup Launch.
His interest in sport saw him release two football comedy videos which became cult-viewing in the nineties: Football Backchat and The Second Leg.
As an actor, on television, he played Spock in Tim Firth’s Preston Front, Mr Kenge in Bleak House and the title role in the quirky detective show Mayo (co-writing several later episodes). He can be seen in E4’s teenage drama Skins as a South African rugby teacher and as the villain in new CBBC drama Young Leonardo.
He has hosted Have I Got News For You? appeared as one of the grumpy old men in Grumpy Guides, presented features on The One Show, sat in Dictionary Corner on Countdown and has been featured on the hugely popular Who Do You Think You Are?
In 2012 Alistair hosted You Cannot Be Serious a new comedy series for ITV.