Trevor Evans, a.k.a. Kiddo the Clown
As "Kiddo the Clown," Trevor Evans was the biggest star on TV when I was five. His daily series (1962-65) was produced in what was then the brand new CFTO studios in Agincourt right off the 401 in Toronto. It was the kind of bizarre local kiddie show that would one day inspire the likes of Pee-wee's Playhouse.
Kiddo was the landlord of a zany apartment where laundry came down a shute (onto his head), mice typed notes under the stairs and a general sent his boots down a dumb waiter to be polished. The name of then Prime Minister John Diefenbaker was frequently invoked. The strange way the series ended always haunted me.
Evans, who turns 85 in April, went on to be a top TV director. He worked with a Who's Who of Canadian TV talent including Wayne & Shuster and The Royal Canadian Air Farce. He gave future comedy icons John Candy, Dan Aykroyd and Catherine O'Hara their starts before SCTV. He also directed specials for Rich Little, Stiller & Meara, Carol Burnett and Robert Kline as well as his hero, Red Skelton. He even once worked with Buster Keaton!
Evans is a one-man TV time capsule. The sound quality is less than stellar, recorded over the phone, but lean in and you'll hear stories you will never forget.