Vicki Gabereau is one of Canada’s
best interviewers. With her sharp intellect, quick wit and genuine interest in
people, Vicki has turned her television series, VICKI GABEREAU, into something
more than just a “talk” show – it’s a daytime conversation show.
Now in it’s 8th season, CTV’s VICKI
GABEREAU is a Canadian standard for quality and Vicki herself is a national
celebrity. With two Leo awards in 2004 for Best Talk Show and Best Host In A Talk Series, added to her list of accomplishments,
awards and recognition that include four previous Leo awards, three Actra awards and multiple Gemini nominations, Vicki and her
show are at the top of their class. Each day, across the country, her audience
tunes in to spend time with Vicki and her high profile, entertaining and
background is so filled with adventure, intrigue and risk-taking that she’d
make a great guest for her own show! Growing up in Vancouver,
Vicki Filion had become a neighbourhood
character by the age of 8. At age 18, Vicki moved to Toronto
to go to school and moved in with the family of her father’s best friend,
Pierre Berton. In Toronto,
she met and married a French magician named Michel Gabereau,
and had two children by the time she was 23.
enthusiasm and inquisitiveness led her through a series of jobs which included
driving a cab, delivering elephants to Ohio
and working as a professional clown. In fact, it was her role as “Rosie
Sunrise,” a member of a clown troupe called Puck-Rent-A-Fool that lead to her
minor celebrity status as a mayoralty candidate in Toronto’s
1974 municipal election. She lost to David Crombie by
177,000 votes but the campaign had raised her profile. She turned that
awareness into her first job in radio broadcasting as a fill in for a talk show
at a small radio station in Brampton, Ontario.
Then she set her
sights on a position at CBC, gaining entry with a job in archives. Vicki
received her own show as host of CBC Radio’s Variety Tonight in 1981, starting
in Toronto and moving to Vancouver.
In 1985, the format was changed and the 2 hour long afternoon interview program
Gabereau was born. The show lasted 12 years (1986 –
1997) and established Vicki as the master of the long-format interview. Her
guests liked being on the show and her audience loved her. She had achieved
what she set out to do. More than 15,000 interviews later, it was time for a
In September 1997,
she made the leap to television as host of Gabereau
Live! - a live variety/talk show broadcast from Vancouver.
The move was a challenge for the veteran radio broadcaster and scared her, which, she says, is exactly what she wanted. Guests on the
show range from Hollywood stars to Nobel Prize winners,
from cookbook authors to one of Vicki’s ‘pet’ segments - “Dog of the Week. The
risk paid off – CTV’s VICKI GABEREAU is now entering
its 8th season.
Vicki currently lives
in West Vancouver with her
companion Tom Rowe. She is the author of This Won’t Hurt A Bit - her
autobiography, as well as Cooking Without Looking - a
smorgasbord of recipes by her CBC listeners. For ten years she has been a board
member of the Governor General Performing Arts Awards Foundation. She holds Honourary Doctorates from Athabasca University
She is the Honourary Fundraising Chair for the
Parkinson Society and a board member of the Raymon
John Hnatyshyn Foundation. But on March
24, 2003, she gained the most important title to her – grandmother,
to baby Lucas Arthur Corin Burnett.
The Life and Times of
"I don't know
what I'm doing. I really don't."
- Vicki Gabereau
motor mouth", "the chat Queen," "the Princess of gab,"
"the Grand Dame of foot-in-mouth" - she's none other than Vicki Gabereau! She spent
more than 20 years on CBC Radio - interviewing everyone who was anyone, she's
written two books, has her own national television show, and recently made an
unexpected trip into the Jungles of the Peruvian Amazon. Life and Times takes a look at the
irrepressible person behind the mouth.
Not one to take the
easy path in life, she dropped out of high school two credits short, got
married before she was 20, had two kids by the time she was 23, drove a cab,
slung beer, and ran for Mayor of Toronto - all before she turned 30.
grew up in Vancouver in the 1950's
surrounded by media personalities. Her
father worked as a photographer for the Vancouver
Sun and often complimented the words of his best friend Pierre Berton with his photographs. Although she was very bright, school for Gabereau was a challenge.
Her inability to concentrate mystified her teachers and her
parents. It was her first husband Michel
Gabereau, a lion tamer with the circus when they
first met, who encouraged Vicki towards a career in the media.
"I sort of had
it in my mind that I'd like to be an announcer on the radio. Once, I read the
news at CBC Edmonton, and the guy called me in and said, "never again are you reading the news. I don't care if we have to drag someone in
off the street or I do it. You are never
doing it again, you were awful!,"" says Gabereau. It didn't
take long before she was the backfill host for Don Harron
on CBC Radio's Morningside.
apoplectic, I was looking for a bus to run me over on my way to work that
day," said Gabereau, recalling her first day on
Morningside. After 22 years with CBC
Radio, three Actra awards and more than 5,000
interviews, Gabereau's new home is in front of a live
television audience on her very own hour-long interview/talk show for CTV.
Vicki Frances Gabereau (born 1946) is a Canadian radio and television
personality. Most recently she hosted an eponmously
titled afternoon talk show on CTV Television Network, which wrapped up
production on April 8th, 2005.
Born Vicki Filion in Vancouver, British
Columbia, Gabereau moved to
Toronto at age 18 for university.
In Toronto, she married Michel Gabereau and worked a variety of jobs, including as a
professional clown. In that capacity, she ran for Mayor of Toronto in 1974
under the pseudonym Rosie Sunrise.
She then worked in
radio, hosting her first talk show for a station in Brampton,
Ontario. She later joined the CBC as an
archivist, and became host of that network's Variety Tonight in 1981.
In 1985, she became
host of Gabereau, a two-hour daily interview show on
CBC Radio. She stayed with the CBC until 1997, when she moved to CTV. Her radio
program was replaced by Richardson's
Roundup, hosted by Bill Richardson.
has also published an autobiography, This Won't Hurt a Bit, and a cookbook
collecting some of her favourite recipes sent in by
her CBC radio listeners.
BC Radio History