According to the Royal Variety Charity, comedian and impersonator Mike Yarwood died at the age of 82. His effective impersonations of politicians and other important figures in the 1960s and 1970s, which garnered a big television audience, helped him gain notoriety.
His death was confirmed by the Royal Variety Charity in a tweet, “We are deeply saddened to announce the passing of the legendary comedian and impersonator, #MikeYarwood, OBE. Mike leaves behind an immeasurable void in the entertainment industry. We send our deepest condolences to Mike’s family, his many friends and fans. RIP 🙏”
Mike Yarwood was a well-known British comedian and impersonator who excelled at portraying public people such as politicians, actors, and celebrities. Millions of people watched his performances since he was one of the top TV stars of the 1970s.
His most well-known impersonations include:
- Harold Wilson, the former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
- Ted Heath, Wilson’s Conservative Party rival
- Prince Charles
- Denis Healey, the Chancellor of the Exchequer
- Hughie Green, the presenter of the TV talent show Opportunity Knocks
- Magnus Pyke, the TV science presenter
- Alf Garnett, the character from the sitcom Till Death Us Do Part
- Columbo, the American detective from the TV series of the same name
- Frank Spencer, the comic creation of sitcom actor Michael Crawford
Yarwood was renowned for his witty and accurate impersonations. He was able to accurately impersonate his subjects’ mannerisms and voices, and he frequently used these impressions to make political or social comments.
He had his first great breakthrough when he impersonated Harold Wilson on the BBC variety show Sunday Night at the London Palladium in 1964. In the early 1960s, he started out as an impressionist.
Yarwood received numerous honors for his work, including two BAFTAs, and his television programs enjoyed tremendous popularity. In 1981, he was also given an OBE. In 1992, Yarwood left the entertainment industry, but he kept appearing in public on occasion.