chapter  7
27 Pages

Brian Hill: The musical documentary

If you had known Brian Hill as a student, nothing in his background would have led you to believe that, one day, he would develop into an influential figure in the world of television documentary. He says himself that he was ‘not meant for television’. Born in Rochdale in Lancashire, he grew up wanting to be a community activist. After reading Sociology at Leicester University he became a social worker, very much involved in grass-roots local activity. As a result of this experience, he gained a reputation for himself and, eventually, a BBC producer asked him to act as a consultant/expert on a people’s rights programme. This experience ignited an interest which eventually took him into television production, at first still pursuing his interest in community affairs.

Then, in 1992, he was approached by Paul Watson, who was setting up a new project to be made in Australia, a documentary serial about the daily life of a ‘typical’ Australian family. Watson wanted two directors to film over several months while he executive produced. Brian Hill accepted the challenge and was teamed