Chris Howland

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Chris Howland in 2009
Born John Christopher Howland
(1928-07-30)30 July 1928
Died 29 November 2013(2013-11-29) (aged 85)
Occupation Radio- and TV presenter, actor, singer, author
Years active 1948–2013

Chris Howland (30 July 1928 – 29 November 2013[1]) was a British radio and TV presenter.[2][3] For most of his career he worked in (Western) Germany, where he started a few years after World War II at BFBS. He became a popular disc jockey and presenter also at German networks. He also was a prolific Schlager-singer[4] and starred in films.

Youth in England[edit]

Chris Howland was born in London and brought up in Southern England and became a professional beekeeper.[5]

Radio career[edit]

In 1948 he started working for the British Forces Broadcasting Service in Germany.[6][7]

The British programmes were popular among German youths who would rather listen to British music than to the comparatively slow contemporary German music. So his popularity subsequently soon exceeded his actual target audience.[8] Howland also got acquainted with the German language. In 1952, when he already spoke German fluently, he was hired by the Nordwestdeutscher Rundfunk broadcaster.[9] Still, when he debuted six years later as a singer[10] , he did it in German and had two hits. But in 1959 he stopped doing radio shows and returned to Britain.

TV career[edit]

On British TV Howland had a show called Peoples and Places but he was not as popular as in Germany where the audiences loved his British accent.[11] So after two years he continued his career in Germany.[12] Here he got a show called Studio B .[13] which featured pop stars in a new way that included a lot of humour. The show was broadcast more than sixty times. Howland's next coup was a version of Candid Camera for German TV.[14]

Cinema career[edit]

From 1954 Howland acted in more than twenty films, including six European Karl May films. In 2007 he appeared in a parody on German Edgar Wallace feature films.[15] He acted mainly in comedies which were carried out in a style quite like the British Carry On films.

Accent as trademark[edit]

Like the Dutch TV presenter, singer and actor Rudi Carrell and the American musician, actor and journalist Bill Ramsey (who also appeared as guest in Howland's show "Studio B"[16]) he made his accent his trademark.[17]

Recent activities[edit]

Until his death Howland lived outside Cologne and worked again as a radio presenter[18] and appeared occasionally as an actor or talker on TV. In 2009 he published his memoirs Yes, Sir.[19] The book was well received.[20]

Howland died on 29 November 2013.[1]


External links[edit]