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Melvyn Hayes

by: Caroline Westbrook - Last updated: 2003-09-10

Melvyn Hayes

Melvyn Hayes today

Back in the 70s, it seemed that Melvyn Hayes was barely off TV screens, thanks to his role in It Ain’t Half Hot Mum, the BBC sitcom that followed the fortunes of a concert party entertaining the troops in Burma during the Second World War.

As Bombardier ‘Gloria’ Beaumont, he seemed to spend most of his screen time in drag – creating one of the more memorable TV characters of the decade.
 
After the show finished in 1981 Hayes, who made his acting debut in 1950, continued to work steadily in TV, film and theatre, appearing on the likes of Ben Elton’s sitcom the Thin Blue Line, newspaper satire Drop The Dead Donkey and Channel 4 quiz show Countdown.

He’s also been in demand as a voiceover artist, providing vocals for such small screen cartoons as Superted and Budgie (based on the books by Sarah Ferguson), and is a regular in pantomime, donning the drag once again for Aladdin and Jack And The Beanstalk, among others.
 
But what’s Hayes, who’s now 68, up to these days? Well, he’s combining the voiceover work with the odd TV appearance (most notably, the short lived BBC Choice sketch show Revolver), as well as trying his hand at stand-up comedy with touring show It Ain’t Half Fun Mum (“it was a lifetime ambition realised,” he admits).

You can find out even more at his website: www.melvynhayes.co.uk