Russell Grant

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Russell Grant
Born Russell John Dammerall Grant[1]
(1951-02-05) 5 February 1951 (age 63)
Hillingdon, Middlesex, England
Nationality British
Occupation Media personality, author, astrologer
Years active 1979–present
Religion Christian Spiritualist[2]
Partner(s) Doug Beaumont[3] (1972–)
Website
Official Website

Russell John Dammerall Grant[1] (born 5 February 1951)[1] is a British astrologer and media personality.[3] He has written several books on astrology, provides syndicated newspaper horoscopes and operates premium rate astrology phone lines.[4] In March 2010, he began offering a "Pet Psychic" service.[5] He is also the author of The Real Counties of Britain,[6] and founded the Association of British Counties in 1989.[7]

In recent years, Grant has participated in the ninth series of Strictly Come Dancing in 2011 and Celebrity MasterChef in 2014.

Career

Early career

Grant first appeared on television talking about astrology in 1979, featured in Yorkshire Television programme Extraordinary presented by Valerie Pitts and Melvin Harris.[8] He was the regular astrologer on Granada Television's Live from Two which ran from 1980–81. He is best known for his appearances on breakfast television joining BBC's Breakfast Time to present the Your Stars section from 1983–86.[8] In 1986 he joined TV-am as resident astrologer appearing on Good Morning Britain and After Nine until 1990.[8] Later from 1992–95 he was a regular expert on This Morning with Richard and Judy offering astrological advice.[8]

In 1983 Russell Grant and the Starlettes released cover versions of the songs "No Matter What Sign You Are" and "Where Is Love?".[9]

Grant has also taken the role of presenter on many shows, including Star Choice, a celebrity quiz show based on the zodiac.[8] In 1991 he co-hosted with Miriam Stoppard episodes of daily show People Today[8] and in 1994 Grant had his own six episode series, Russell Grant's All Star Show.[10]

Following the launch of Channel 5, Russell Grant presented Wideworld, a series in which members of the public were encouraged to make historical records for future generations.[8] He also directed and starred in Russell Grant's Postcards from 1998–2002, which was a collection of over 100 five-minute travelogues produced by his own production company, Russell Grant's World Productions.[11]

2003-2005: Television presenting

In 2003 Grant presented a series of eight programmes called Russell Grant's Sporting Scandals for ITV[12] and in 2004 presented The Russell Grant Show for Sky One. On Bingo Night Live, in 2008,[13] pre-recorded videos of Grant were shown, in which he gave opinion on the chances of winning based on his horoscope readings.

2006-2011: Reality television

In January 2006, Grant took part in the fourth series of Celebrity Fit Club, losing over 3 stone.[14] In May 2010, he appeared on Kitchen Burnout on ITV[15] and in January 2011 he visited Turkey as part of Channel 4's Celebrity Five Go to....[16][17]

2011-12: Strictly Come Dancing and theatre

Main article: Strictly Come Dancing

On 6 September 2011, it was announced that Grant would take part in the ninth series series of Strictly Come Dancing.[18] In the launch show, on 10 September, he was partnered with professional dancer Flavia Cacace.[19] He was eliminated from the competition on 20 November 2011 at the show's Wembley Arena weekend.[20]

Grant also appeared in the 2012 series of Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two as 'Stat Man', with a guide to the numbers of winners of Strictly Come Dancing.[21]

It was revealed in October 2012, that the annual Children in Need Appeal Night would feature a Strictly Come Dancing special, it featured Grant alongside Ann Widdecombe.[22]

Beginning performances on 14 February 2012, Grant took over from Michael Crawford in the titular role of The Wizard of Oz. The 2011 revival played at the London Palladium and featured new music by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice. Grant played a limited 12-week engagement through 6 May 2012, starring alongside Sophie Evans as Dorothy.

Week Dance/Song Judges' scores Total Scores Result
1 Cha-cha-cha / "Venus" 4,5,6,6 21 Safe
2 Salsa / "Dancing Queen" 6,6,6,7 25 Safe
3 Foxtrot / "Don't Rain on My Parade" 6,7,7,8 28 Safe
4 Tango / "Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)" 5,6,6,7 24 Safe
5 Samba / "Better the Devil You Know" 4,6,6,6 22 Safe
6 Paso Doble / "Carmen" 4,7,6,7 24 Safe
7 American Smooth / "I Am What I Am" 5,7,7,7 26 Safe
8 Jive / "Reach" 5,6,6,7 24 Eliminated

2014: Celebrity MasterChef

Main article: Celebrity MasterChef

On 24 May 2014 it was announced that Russell would be taking part in the ninth series of Celebrity MasterChef.[23] The series began airing on 10 June 2014 with Russell taking part in the first two episodes of the series until he was eliminated on 12 June, one stage away from reaching the semi-finals.

Episode Original Air Date Episode summary Result
1 10 June 2014
  • The first challenge was the Mystery box task, where Russell made two types of Spring Rolls
  • The outside challenge saw Russell, along with Jodie went to Babbo, a high-end Italian restaurant in Mayfair. Russell had to make a dish in order to impress the head chef.
  • The third and final challenge in the episode saw Russell cook a two-course meal for the judges. The meal had to be inspired by something or someone. Russell made his Aunt's Fish and Chips & Bread and Butter pudding.
Safe
2 12 June 2014
  • Knowledge and skills test. Identifying a variety of ingredients and making Brandy snaps with piped ginger cream
  • The outside challenge was to cook for 120 people at Mount Pleasant in North London
  • Cooking for three previous Celebrity MasterChef finalists. He cooked Three counties sausage toad in the hole and Honey, cinnamond and Apple crumble with custard
Eliminated

Guest appearances

Early and personal life

Grant was raised in a council house in the 1950s, his father working as a sales rep for a car accessory business.[4] Later his parents worked at Pinewood Studios, his mother Jo dealing with contracts, his father a set designer and he spent most of his childhood in the care of his grandparents.[3] After losing both his grandmothers to Alzheimer's disease, Grant suffered clinical depression.[3]

Grant's original career was as an actor and performed in a variety of productions including Tom Brown's Schooldays[24] with Keith Chegwin who shared a similar career path from acting to television. It is through this work he met his partner Doug Beaumont, who worked as a stagehand in a Blackpool theatre.[3]

Grant helped design the badge for Brentford F.C., the team he supports though he has been a keen follower of all non-league clubs in Middlesex since the 1950s, having regularly attended games at various clubs during childhood.[25]

Grant has worked as a Redcoat at Butlin's Holiday Camps.[26]

Grant is gay and has been with his partner Doug Beaumont, who is also his manager, for 40 years.[14][27]

References

  1. ^ a b c "Researcha.co.ukTerms and Conditions". Web.researcha.com. Retrieved 30 July 2010. 
  2. ^ "Secrets and lives — Russell Grant". The Scotsman. 20 February 2006. 
  3. ^ a b c d e Carole Cadwalladr (1 January 2006). "I've played my own role to death". The Observer (London). 
  4. ^ a b Mark Anstead (8 July 2009). "Fame & Fortune: Astrologer Russell Grant". The Daily Telegraph (London). 
  5. ^ "Russell Grant reveals if your Pet is Happy!". Response Source. 23 March 2010. Retrieved 30 July 2010. 
  6. ^ Russell Grant (1996). The Real Counties of Britain. Virgin Books. ISBN 1-85227-479-4. 
  7. ^ "By George! England's traditional counties can return to England’s roads - Press releases". GOV.UK. 23 April 2014. Retrieved 6 June 2014. 
  8. ^ a b c d e f g "Filmography GRANT, Russell". British Film Institute. 
  9. ^ "Russell Grant and the Starlettes". 45cat. 
  10. ^ "Russell Grant's All Star Show". British Film Institute. 
  11. ^ "Russell Grant's Postcards". British Film Institute. 
  12. ^ "Russell Grant's Sporting Scandals". British Film Institute. 
  13. ^ "Bingo Night Live". UK Gameshows. 
  14. ^ a b Mark Anstead (19 May 2009). "Russell Grant: I don't want to move, but then I don't wear the trousers in this relationship". The Daily Mail (London). 
  15. ^ "Kitchen Burnout". UK Gameshows. 
  16. ^ Celebrity Five Go to... at UKGameshows.com
  17. ^ Celebrity Five Go to... at channel4.com
  18. ^ "Strictly Come Dancing signs up Lulu and Edwina Currie". BBC News (British Broadcasting Corporation). 6 September 2011. Retrieved 6 September 2011. 
  19. ^ "Russell Grant". Strictly Come Dancing. BBC. 2011. Retrieved 12 September 2011. 
  20. ^ "Russell Grant leaves Strictly". Strictly Come Dancing. BBC. 20 November 2011. Retrieved 21 November 2011. 
  21. ^ "Strictly It Takes Two Series 10 Episode 19". bbc.co.uk/iplayer. Retrieved 2 November 2012. 
  22. ^ Fletcher, Alex (30 October 2012). "Russell Grant, Widdecombe return to 'Strictly' for Children in Need". digitalspy.co.uk. Retrieved 2 November 2012. 
  23. ^ http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/tv/s127/masterchef/news/a573175/christopher-biggins-jls-jb-jodie-kidd-in-celebrity-masterchef-lineup.html#~oGYzczJ9eB1wcF
  24. ^ "Isle of Man Actors — Russell Grant". 
  25. ^ Grant on Football Forum dicusses the 2012 F A cup first round
  26. ^ Andy McSmith (2 August 2008). "Butlins booms in lean times". The Independent (London). 
  27. ^ "Russell Grant: from suicidal recluse to the star of Strictly". The Daily Telegraph (London). 6 November 2011. 

External links