Beloved Kiwi comedian John Clarke dies


Kiwi entertainer John Clarke, best known for his character Fred Dagg, has died.

The 68-year-old died on Sunday while hiking in a national park in Victoria, Australia, an ABC spokesperson told the Sydney Morning Herald.

Born in Palmerston North, he'd lived in Australia for several decades.

Fred Dagg was his breakthrough character. He made regular appearances on TV and radio as the singlet-wearing farmer, making a number of albums and books.

He provided the voice for Wal Footrot in Murray Ball's 1986 feature film Footrot Flats: The Dog's Tale. Ball only died a month ago.

In Australia Clarke found fame as a political satirist, particularly his mock interviews with collaborater Bryan Dawe.

He wrote a screenplay, The Man Who Sued God, which was turned into a feature film starring Scottish comedian Billy Connolly in 2002.