Sonia Kruger (right) with Daniel MacPherson at the 2011 Logie Awards, in Melbourne
Sonia Melissa Kruger
28 August 1965
|Television||Big Brother |
Australia's Got Talent
The Voice Australia
Dancing with the Stars
Sonia Melissa Kruger (born 28 August 1965) is an Australian television presenter and media personality, who has been a prominent figure in the media for over 20 years. Kruger is currently the host of Big Brother Australia and a judge on Australia's Got Talent.
She is best known for co-hosting the popular Australian version of Dancing with the Stars and for the role of Tina Sparkle in the 1992 film Strictly Ballroom, Sonia has also been a co-host of Today Extra and hosted The Voice Australia.
Born in Toowoomba, Queensland, she attended Beenleigh State High School, completing Year 12 in 1982. Kruger has also completed an Arts Degree at the University of Technology, Sydney and taught dance at the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA) in Sydney.
In 1992 Kruger came to prominence in her acting debut as "Tina Sparkle" in the AFI Award-Winning film Strictly Ballroom. She also served as a ballroom adviser for the film. This remains as Kruger's only acting role to date. Following Kruger's film debut she hosted the Children's Variety Show Wonder World on the Nine Network. Kruger has been an Entertainment Reporter for both Seven Network shows Today Tonight, Sunrise and 11AM. Kruger previously hosted the Morning Program on the Sydney-based radio station Mix 106.5 with Dancing with the Stars Judges Todd McKenney and Andy Grace.
In 2004 Kruger joined the Seven Network reality dance competition television series Dancing with the Stars, the Australian version of the UK BBC television series Strictly Come Dancing. She co-hosted the series with both Daryl Somers and Daniel MacPherson over the course of the eleven seasons in which she appeared. In September 2008 Kruger was confirmed to host the Seven Network makeover reality show 10 Years Younger in 10 Days. Despite high ratings for its series premiere, Seven Network did not renew the series for a second season.
In November 2011 Kruger announced she was leaving both Dancing with the Stars and Seven Network to pursue other opportunities. Kruger then signed a development deal with the Nine Network in November 2011. Kruger was confirmed to host her own daytime talk show Mornings with singer/actor David Campbell. The series was designed to replace Kerri-Anne which ended that same month. This new series premiered on 6 February 2012(and continues into 2016 rebranded as Today Extra). Kruger was also announced to host Nine Network's reboot of the competition reality television series Big Brother Australia. Kruger replaced Kyle Sandilands and Jackie O, who hosted the series on Network Ten in its eighth season, after which the show was cancelled in 2008. Big Brother Australia 9 premiered on 13 August 2012 to 1.6 million viewers, the franchise's highest ratings since the series' third season. On 22 February 2015, it was announced that Kruger would be joining the fourth series of The Voice Australia as a co-host with Darren McMullen.
In November 2017, Kruger was announced as a co-host of Vision Australia's Carols by Candlelight alongside David Campbell. She replaced Lisa Wilkinson who resigned from the Nine Network. Kruger was replaced by Allison Langdon after defecting to the Seven Network.
In August 2018, Kruger was announced as a presenter on the Nine Network's new travel series Helloworld, which aired on 7 October 2018. But she, Lauren Phillips, Denis Walter and Steven Jacobs was replaced by Giaan Rooney as a presenter now on the Seven Network from series 2.
In November 2019, Kruger announced her resignation from the Nine Network, she hosted Today Extra for the last time on Friday 15 November. Seven Network CEO James Warburton confirmed her joining the network and announced that her roles will include hosting their upcoming reality show Mega Mini Golf, also will become a judge replacing Nicole Scherzinger on Australia's Got Talent. She also became a judge on the spinoff Australia's Got Talent: Challengers & Champions.
In February 2020, the Seven Network announced that Kruger would host a revival of Big Brother, but due to filming commitments will no longer be hosting the upcoming series Mega Mini Golf. In 2021, Kruger will again host The Voice, after Seven picked up the rights to the franchise following the Nine Network's failure to renew its contract with the show.
Kruger was married for six years (2002-2008) to James Davies, a British-born banker.
After the marriage ended in September 2008, she began seeing her current partner Craig McPherson, executive producer of Today Tonight. She and McPherson had been trying for a child for years, through both IVF and natural methods. She became pregnant several times, but all ended in miscarriages. In August 2014, she announced she was pregnant, having conceived via in-vitro fertilisation (IVF). In January 2015, Kruger gave birth to a daughter, Maggie.
In 2008, during an episode of Dancing with Stars, Kruger made a comment about a "sweat shop of illegal immigrants" working on her wardrobe for the Melbourne Cup carnival before referring to the show's musical director Chong Lim, the show's Malaysian-born musical director with the words "How's the family, Chong? All right?" Channel 7 later issued an apology for her statement.
On 18 July 2016, during an appearance on the morning show Today, Kruger called for a complete ban on Muslims entering Australia, in agreement with an opinion piece by commentator Andrew Bolt. Kruger defended her comments saying "I believe it's vital in a democratic society to be able to discuss these issues without being labelled racist." The firebombing of a Perth radio station initially linked by media reports to the presenters disagreeing with Kruger's views was later determined by police to be coincidental and to have "nothing to do with the Islam discussion".
A racial vilification complaint against Kruger was made to the Civil and Administrative Tribunal over her statement about Muslim immigration. Nine Network applied to have the complaint dismissed without a hearing, but this was refused. The complaint was made by Sam Ekermawi, who was described by the Daily Telegraph as a "serial offence-taker." . The tribunal heard that Ekermawi had been involved in thirty-two hearings before courts and tribunals. The matter would proceed for directions in June 2018.
Sonia Kruger "...vilified Muslims in comments about banning them from immigrating to Australia, a New South Wales tribunal says."
The article went on to state "...While the comments were not found to be racially vilification, they "would likely encourage hatred towards, or serious contempt for, Australian Muslims by ordinary members of the Australian population", the tribunal said."
- "Sonia Kruger". IMDb. Retrieved 11 October 2014.
- "Kyle's career lives on (including additional news)". Smh.com.au. Retrieved 11 October 2014.
- "Daryl Somers quits Dancing". Smh.com.au. Retrieved 11 October 2014.
- "DANIEL MACPHERSON TO HOST DANCING WITH THE STARS" (PDF). Sevenwestmedia.com.au. Archived from the original (PDF) on 17 October 2014. Retrieved 11 October 2014.
- "Twosomes needed for nip/tuck". www.dailytelegraph.com.au. 21 September 2008. Retrieved 15 July 2019.
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-  Archived 17 October 2012 at the Wayback Machine
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- "MORNINGS with Sonia and David". today. Archived from the original on 8 October 2014. Retrieved 11 October 2014.
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- "Ten Network drops Australian Big Brother after Pamela Anderson fails to save show - Television & radio - theguardian.com". the Guardian. Retrieved 11 October 2014.
- "Big Brother and Underbelly prove a hit with viewers". NewsComAu. Retrieved 11 October 2014.
- Knox, David (22 February 2015). "Sonia Kruger to co-host The Voice". TV Tonight. Retrieved 22 February 2015.
- "IT'S SHOWTIME! Helloworld The TV Show: Coming soon to Channel Nine". karryon.com.au. Retrieved 11 October 2018.
- Lallo, Michael (14 November 2019). "Sonia Kruger resigns on-air from Nine Network". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 14 November 2019.
- Knox, David (24 November 2019). "Sonia Kruger to join AGT panel". TV Tonight. Retrieved 24 November 2019.
- Knox, David (24 November 2019). "SEVEN confirms TV Blackbox exclusive re Sonia Kruger's new roles". TV Black Box. Retrieved 24 November 2019.
- Kelly, Vivienne. "Sonia Kruger and Kyle Sandilands join Seven's Australia's Got Talent judging panel". mumbrella.com.au. Retrieved 10 July 2020.
- "Sonia Kruger will host Big Brother on Channel 7 in 2020". NewsComAu. 5 February 2020. Retrieved 5 February 2020.
- "Big Brother 2020 host revealed". 7NEWS.com.au. 5 February 2020. Retrieved 5 February 2020.
- "The Voice Australia to return in 2021 on Channel 7". Seven News. 31 August 2020. Retrieved 7 September 2020.
- "Sonia Kruger: the Truth Behind My Marriage Split". New Idea. 24 February 2009. Archived from the original on 13 January 2016. Retrieved 25 August 2014.
- "Mornings host Sonia Kruger loved up with Today Tonight Producer Craig McPherson". news.com.au. 2 February 2012. Retrieved 25 August 2014.
- "'I couldn't let myself feel happy'". www.couriermail.com.au. 23 August 2014. Retrieved 15 July 2019.
- "Sonia Kruger: I'm struggling with IVF at 47". The Australian Women's Weekly. 26 September 2012. Archived from the original on 26 August 2014. Retrieved 25 August 2014.
- "Sonia Kruger gives birth to baby daughter". The Daily Telegraph. 24 January 2015. Retrieved 24 January 2015.
- Sonia's foot in her mouth again – couriermail.com.au. Retrieved 23 November 2011.
- Gavin Fernando (2016) "Television personality Sonia Kruger calls for Australia to ban Muslims" News.com.au, 18 July 2016. Retrieved 18 July 2016.
- "Five facts to fight Sonia Kruger's fear of Muslims". Retrieved 1 January 2017.
- Foster, Brendan (29 July 2016). "Man charged over fires at WAtoday and Radio 6PR". Retrieved 1 January 2017.
- Daily Telegraph, 2018-5-30, p.7
- "Sonia Kruger vilified Muslim people in Australia but her comments were not 'racist'". ABC News. 15 February 2019. Retrieved 15 July 2019.
| Today Extra
Co-host with David Campbell
February 2012 - November 2019
Darren McMullen (Solo)
Darren McMullen & Renee Bargh
| The Voice Australia
2015 – 2019
2021 – present
Darren McMullen & Renee Bargh
Kyle Sandilands and Jackie O
| Big Brother Australia
2020 - present
2012 - 2014
| Dancing with the Stars
2004 - 2011
| Carols by Candlelight
2017 - 2018