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The Boy From Oz Peter Allen Passed Away - 1992

Monday, June 18, 2007

On June 18th 1992 Australian songwriter and singer Peter Allen passed away at the age of 48 in Leucadia, California from complications caused by AIDS.

Born Peter Allen Woolnough in Tenterfield, New South Wales, Allen began his performing career as one of the "Allen Brothers" who were a popular cabaret and television act in the early 1960s. Discovered by Judy Garland while Allen was performing in Hong Kong, she invited him to return with her to the United States where he performed with her and also married her daughter Liza Minnelli in 1967. (They were divorced in 1972)

In 1977 Allen released an album Taught By Experts, which reached number one in Australia, along with the number one singles "I Go To Rio" and "The More I See You". Although his recording career in the US never progressed, he became a popular performer in Las Vegas and had a long engagement at New York City's Radio City Music Hall.

"The More I See You"
(performed live on The Paul Hogan TV Show 1977)

"I Go To Rio"

He achieved most success during his lifetime writing for other performers. He wrote "Don't Cry Out Loud" for Melissa Manchester, and scored his biggest success with the song "I Honestly Love You" recorded by Olivia Newton-John. Her single reached number one in the United States and won two Grammy Awards for Record of the Year and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance for Newton-John.

"Don't Cry Out Loud"
(performed by Melissa Manchester)

This is an incredibly well done collage made up of 25 different film clips of Olivia Newton-John singing this classic song over a 30 year time frame.

"I Honestly Love You"

After his death, one of his older songs I Still Call Australia Home, became popular through its use in television commercials for initially National Panasonic, then after 1988 Qantas tourism, and came to be regarded as an unofficial Australian national anthem.

"I Still Call Australia Home"

A musical based on his life, titled The Boy from Oz, opened in Australia in 1998. Using his largely autobiographical songs to form the soundtrack, the production starred Todd McKenney as Allen, and Christina Amphlett of rock group Divinyls as Garland. The show was an outstanding success. In 2003 it opened on Broadway, becoming the first Australian musical ever to be performed there. In this production Allen was played by Hugh Jackman who won a Tony Award for his portrayal in 2004.

"Boy From Oz at 2004 Tony Awards"

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“The Boy From Oz Peter Allen Passed Away - 1992”

  1. Anonymous E. Willingham Says:

    Melissa, Olivia, Hugh, Liza, Pavarotti, Judy and Peter have given all of us a great gift - from their hearts. No matter how far or how wide they roam remember, forever, there's no place like home!
    E. Willingham
    July 3 2007

  2. Blogger Optional Says:

    Some great pics you have there E. Willingham!

    The Boy From Oz pics

    Thanks for sharing them.

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