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Stan­ley’s home work

JO STAN­LEY has never looked hap­pier or health­ier as she set­tles back into life as a FOX FM break­fast co-host. Fol­low­ing the birth of her daugh­ter, Wil­low, Stan­ley is get­ting used to work­ing on the show from a stu­dio set up at the home she shares with Wil­low and her hus­band, TV pro­ducer Dar­ren McFar­lane. Stan­ley will work from home un­til June. Stan­ley and McFar­lane wel­comed their 3kg black-haired bun­dle of joy at 11.19pm on Tues­day, Fe­bru­ary 24. Stan­ley had a 15-hour labour and de­liv­ery was by cae­sarean sec­tion. ‘‘I was numb for two days be­cause it was a cae­sar and I found that quite trau­matic,’’ Stan­ley says. Asked how she’d felt about ba­bies be­fore hav­ing one of her own, Stan­ley says: ‘‘I never re­ally liked them that much, I have to say. Un­til I had my own, I had no real con­nec­tion. But I’ve loved my time off, hang­ing out with my lit­tle baby’’.

Mathi­son Idol vote

MEL­BOURNE au­di­tions for the new sea­son of Aus­tralian Idol will be held on May 1 and 2. And James Mathi­son, who re­vealed in the Her­ald Sun he was quit­ting the show af­ter six years as co-host, is cer­tain Idol will pros­per without him. ‘‘The show lives or dies by the kids (con­tes­tants) it gets in and this year will be no dif­fer­ent,’’ Mathi­son says. ‘‘I think of the best and worst years we’ve had and rarely has any­thing I’ve done had any­thing to do with that.’’ Mathi­son con­fesses, how­ever, there are things he’ll miss about Idol. ‘‘I will miss live TV be­cause it’s fun and any­thing can hap­pen,’’ he says. ‘‘It was a hard de­ci­sion be­cause I love work­ing with An­drew (G) and be­cause the show has been such a mas­sive part of my life.’’ Asked if it was dif­fi­cult walk­ing away from the fi­nan­cial se­cu­rity of a reg­u­lar TV gig, the Nova ra­dio star adds: ‘‘It’s not about money. I had as much fun on the show last year as I’ve ever had, but I just feel the need to be con­stantly chal­leng­ing my­self. I never wanted to do TV as such, but I was drawn to it through my love of mu­sic.’’

Hits on pa­rade

RA­DIO’S Take 40 Aus­tralia is cel­e­brat­ing its 25th birth­day with a spe­cial Top 40 trib­ute— a count­down of the big­gest No.1 hits from the past 25 year. The ul­ti­mate Take 40 count­down dates back to the pro­gram’s 1984 launch and is fea­tured on www.take40.com with an im­pres­sive col­lec­tion of the most pop­u­lar re­cent and retro video clips, all free and ready to stream.

Re­al­ity’s dou­ble bites

CHAN­NEL 9 has an­nounced plans for new fac­tual se­ries You Saved My Life and Miss­ing Pieces, both to pre­miere on April 20. You Saved My Life, hosted by Tara Brown and Dr An­drew Rochford, is about peo­ple who have en­dured life-threat­en­ing sit­u­a­tions and been saved by strangers. Miss­ing Pieces, hosted by Peter Over­ton, fol­lows the huge suc­cess of Seven’s Jack Thomp­son-hosted Find My Fam­ily. Miss­ing Pieces looks into the lives of peo­ple who are strug­gling to lo­cate some­one who has had a ma­jor im­pact on them.

Mel­bourne in Gear

SHOOT­ING on the sec­ond sea­son of Top Gear Aus­tralia is in full swing. New ad­di­tion to the team James Mor­ri­son, and Steve Piz­zati, will be in Mel­bourne in late April shoot­ing scenes for the show. Their co-host War­ren Brown won’t be mak­ing the trip down from Syd­ney as he’ll be in Gal­lipoli for an AN­ZAC Day event.

Minchin rock whiz

ROCK + Roll Nerd, three years in the mak­ing, is to pre­miere on ABC1 on April 30. The doco, which tells the story of comedic mu­si­cian Tim Minchin’s rise from the edge of ob­scu­rity to the verge of celebrity, prom­ises to cap­ture ev­ery cru­cial mo­ment of Minchin’s fren­zied com­edy ca­reer.

Bush footy goals

RU­RAL footy fans are set to get their very own footy show. Off the Bench is ded­i­cated en­tirely to re­gional foot­ball and will screen across the WIN TV net­work from 11.15pm (af­ter The Footy Show) from to­mor­row. The pro­gram will fo­cus on leagues across Vic­to­ria and south­ern NSW and be hosted by Craig Hutchi­son, Liam Pick­er­ing and Danny Fraw­ley.

Mum’s the word: Jo Stan­ley is work­ing from home af­ter Wil­low’s birth. Pic­ture: AN­DREW TAUBER

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