Award-winning comedian Rod Woodward is the son of eminent Welsh sports writer, Karl Woodward, who recently retired as the longest serving member of the National newspaper of Wales, The Western Mail. He had planned to follow his Dad and take up a career in the media but, when offered a job as a studio audience warm up man at HTV Wales, took a year out from university to pursue his childhood ambition of becoming a professional comedian. The rest is Geography!
The 32-year old from Machen, South Wales, has been in big demand on the corporate circuit for many years and recent successes have gained him much wider public awareness.
Having supported Patrick McGuinness on his 110-night nationwide tour and appeared with Russell Brand at St. David’s Hall, Cardiff last summer, he won the BBC comedy competition Funny Business in February 2008.
The Cardiff-born stand-up comic then performed as his alter ego Mario De Niro at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas before Joe Calzaghe’s super fight with Bernard Hopkins. His song ‘Delilah - the Calzaghe remix’ proved a big hit with Joe’s travelling army of fans.
And to celebrate Cardiff City reaching the FA Cup final, Rod wrote and performed a comedy song ‘Do The Ayatollah,’ backed by more than 100 Bluebirds fans.
Set to the tune of the Macarena and recorded at Shabbey Road Studios, Caerphilly, it was a run-away success with more than 200,000 hits on You Tube and other internet sites. It was featured on network radio and television shows, including Soccer AM and GMTV. The CD, released by Grown Up records, has also proved hugely popular.
Rod’s hobbies include swimming, playing the piano and, until an injury, playing football: he broke his leg and lost his anterior cruciate ligament during a five-a-side tournament.
Since the premature (though some would say not a moment too soon) end of his soccer career he has had to settle for the gentler sport of golf and is a member of Llanishen and Ridgeway Golf Clubs as well as the Variety Club Golf Society.
He is still a keen sports enthusiast and has supported Everton since his father covered the 1984 FA Cup Final and brought him back a Watford hat (which he bought prior the game) before Everton went on to win. By default Rod instantly became a blue nose. Fickle!
Rod enjoys listening to jazz and popular music. His favourite singer is Frank Sinatra, who he believes is the greatest entertainer of all time. Rod performed vocals in an Old Blue Eyes tribute concert to raise money for Welsh charity Bobath Cymru and recently repeated the performance some two years later - clearly they were in no rush to hear his dulcet tones again. He attributes his musical taste to his grandfather who was an aficionado of the Great American Songbook, and is delighted to see the huge renaissance of this genre thanks to the likes of Michael Buble, Jamie Cullum, Rod Stewart, Westlife and Robbie Williams.
His comic heroes include Robin Williams, George Carlin, Jerry Seinfeld, Bob Monkhouse, Dave Allen, Billy Connolly, and Richard Pryor.
Rod is also a member of a pub quiz team and is an expert on Greek mythology as long as the answer is Percius.
His ambition is to play piano like George Shearing.