Barry Dye Entertainments was formed in Ipswich in February 1972|
I started playing drums in 1960 and after being made redundant from my day job in 1970, I became a professional drummer. In 1972 I formed the agency, running alongside my playing career. I booked acts and groups into pubs & clubs. As the office gradually became more established we started booking venues and bigger functions further afield. In 1975 I was approached by Chris North the Illusionist, to be his Manager. He wanted to pursue his career as far as possible, and in early 1976 he appeared on the ‘New Faces’ TV programme (1st series) where he was the winner for the week. This led to other TV appearances and in early ‘77 he won the award for ‘Top speciality Act in Britain’.
I continued to build the Management side of the business, and also started booking into the holiday circuits. In February 1983 whilst on holiday at Pontins in Torremolinos, I discovered a young bluecoat called Shane Roche. I thought he had enormous potential, amazing confidence and a personality I had never witnessed before with someone so young (he was 19). He was naturally funny, he could sing and he could dance. I fully believed even then, back in 1983, that here was a young artiste who with the right breaks could become a major star.
Shane was very keen to progress through the business and had great ambitions. He asked me if I would manage him and I agreed, and when his contract with Pontins finished at the end of ’83 he signed with me. We changed his name to Shane Richie and the rest as they say is history. His first summer season in’84 was in Jersey, and his first TV show Summertime Special in 86. Within four years of leaving Pontins he was on TV from the London Palladium. I decided he needed a top London office behind him to push him as hard and fast as possible into the success I felt he could achieve, so we did a deal with International Artistes. Shane became a part of our family, and no one is more proud than I am of the success he has now achieved, - starring in ‘Grease’ in the West End, - as Alfie Moon in ‘Eastenders’ - a number 2 record in the charts in November, - a film premiered in London in November, - and his autobiography released at the same time!!
Phil Dale is currently working wonders with his career.
In 1990 I was asked to find a major artiste to appear at Ipswich Town Football Club. I succeeded in booking Tina Turner, taking a date on her ‘Foreign Affair’ tour. This was by far the biggest event I had ever been involved with, and was certainly a learning curve spanning a period of six months preparation. I also organised the Status Quo concert at Norwich City FC in 1997.
Nowadays most of the work through the office is providing entertainers for corporate events, hotels, cruising etc., but we have branched out into the hire business, and hire out bouncy castles, inflatables, marquees, lighting and sound equipment, and also other equipment for the leisure industry. We also organise complete events for corporate clients.