Ted Roberts began his career in television in the 1960s, writing early episodes of Skippy the Bush Kangaroo. The series was screened in over eighty countries and its theme tune, composed by Eric Jupp, is one of the best known and most recognisable Australian tunes. The long version (the B side on the record) has lyrics by Ted Roberts.
Ted Roberts' other television credits include Homicide (Seven Network - 1964-1976), Certain Women (ABC - 1973-1976), Rush (ABC - 1974-1976), Patrol Boat (ABC 1979-80), Water Rats (Nine Network - 1996-2001), A Country Practice, Blue Heelers, Mission Impossible, Star Trek.
His film credits include "Bush Christmas", which starred Nicole Kidman in her first film, playing "one of three children searching for a stolen racehorse... The 1983 film, directed by Henri Safran, gives us a skinny, pink-cheeked, abundantly plainted Nicole, many moments of good humour, some fine location shots filmed in Queensland's Lamington Plateau, and music from band the Bushwackers." (Weekend Australian, 26-27 Dec 09)
He has won four Australian Awgies and a Henry Lawson Festival Award for his writing, and received AFI and Logie nominations. He won the 1974 Australian Writers' Guild in the Original Television Drama Category for Three Men of the City. He is also Winner of the Henry Lawson prize (for the TV miniseries Lindsay's Boy (ABC - 1974) ). In 2003 he was awarded the prestigious Richard Lane Award by the Australian Writers' Guild for Services to the Australian Writers' Guild.
One of his first songs (1965) was "Bound for Hobart Town" with music by S.E. Libaek. Recorded by Leonard Teale and Andy Sundstrom on CBS. The song celebrates the annual Sydney to Hobart yacht race for the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia.
A later commission was for the Decimal Currency Board. An advertising jingle for the introduction of decimal currency on 14 February 1966, the tune is to "Click Go the Shears".
'In come the dollars and in come the cents / To replace the pounds and the shillings and the pence / Be prepared for change when the coins begin to mix/ On the fourteenth of February 1966.
Chorus: Clink go the coins, clink, clink, clink Change over day is closer than you think Learn the value of the coins and the way that they appear And things will be much smoother when the decimal point is here.
In 1968, he composed My Pal Skippy to music by Eric Jupp.
- The Amorous Dentist (1983)
- Ann Atkinson, Linsay Knight, Margaret McPhee (Ed.) (1996). The dictionary of performing arts in Australia. St Leonards, N.S.W. : Allen & Unwin. ISBN 1-86448-005-X.
- Albert Moran ; with additional research by Peter Pinne (1993). Moran's guide to Australian TV series. North Ryde, N.S.W. : Australian Film Television & Radio School : distributed in Australia and New Zealand by Allen & Unwin. ISBN 0-642-18462-3.
- Lindsay's boy by Ted Roberts in Alrene Sykes (Ed.) (1977). Five plays for stage, radio and television. St. Lucia, Qld. : University of Queensland Press. ISBN 0-7022-1444-2.
- National Library of Australia
- Music Australia
- Australian Government Royal Australian Mint