The Wiggles are Leading the Way in Edutainment — Feature Interview with Luke Field

The Wiggles have entertained and educated young children worldwide for over thirty years with their distinctive blend of music, song, and dance. The group still features its signature colours of blue, red, yellow, and purple. However, there are now eight performers who wear the iconic skivvies, and they are more diverse and gender-balanced than ever before, reflecting a more accurate representation of modern-day Australia.

In 2022, the children’s supergroup had another outstanding year, which included two arena tours in Australia. This impressive feat made The Wiggles the first band in Australian history to perform two arena tours within a single year. Additionally, they attained a #1 ranking Aria album for ReWiggled, adorned the cover of the prestigious Rolling Stone magazine, and earned two ARIA Awards for Best Children’s Act and Best Australian Live Act.

2023 shows no sign of the group slowing down, with a feature-length documentary launching worldwide on Prime Video, more touring, new TV shows and a new 50-track album released in April.

Despite all this success, General Manager Luke Field tells The Bugg Report why it’s important that children remain their foremost priority, as the group aims to become the leading brand for pre-schoolers worldwide.

We began by asking Luke about the incredible success of 2022.

Luke, 2022 was a huge year for The Wiggles on so many levels, from incredible collaborations to your first ARIA #1 album and appearing on the cover of Rolling Stone. Did it feel like the year of The Wiggles?

2022 really was ‘the year of The Wiggles!’ but it has become a launching pad for so much more to come in 2023. Our priority is always about creating engaging content for children. We’re pleased that we have our new TV show, featuring all eight Wiggles, in the market, along with a new 50-track album, and we plan to return to the studio very soon. We were also grateful to be able to hit the road again and tour Australia, New Zealand, the US & Canada. There’s never a dull day in Wiggle Town, but I have to say that the Rolling Stone cover was also a real highlight.

The Wiggles are known for being one of the busiest bands in the world. What is touring life like?

Performing live for audiences is what we love doing the most. The Wiggles have already performed over 180 shows this year alone! Next, we’re off to Victoria, New Zealand, the US and Canada. Then we’ll return to Australia for the annual Big Show arena tour. It’s been particularly fun on the road with the new cast putting on an incredible show, and the audiences love having more Wiggles on stage. We’ve got the Wiggly dancers with Tsehay, Caterina, Evie and Lucia; John loves his fitness, and Lucia also plays the drums. We’ve also noticed that the children in our audiences are becoming more and more creative in their costumes, with some dressing up as their favourite Wiggles and even incorporating homemade props. It’s always amazing to see the sea of colours in the audience.

What are the new live shows, and how have audiences received them?

The Wiggles have been touring as the eight for over a year. The first sell-out arena tour was the Fruit Salad TV Wiggles Big Show, followed by the regional tours and Holiday Party Big Show. Again, another historic moment in music history being the first band to ever do two Arena Tours in Australia, in the same year.

The shows are incredible and feature all the old hits, along with new ones like Hey Tsehay and Big Strong John, along with all the Wiggly characters like Dorothy the Dinosaur, Wags the Dog, and Captain Feathersword. One of the best parts of having more Wiggles on stage is that they each have unique skills and talents that children can relate to, so there’s something for everyone.

What is the current makeup of your broadcast and streaming partners?

We can be viewed across various platforms, including Netflix worldwide, ABC Kids and Stan in Australia, TVNZ in New Zealand, Treehouse in Canada, and Sky Kids in the UK. Parents can also view hundreds of hours of Wiggles content on demand on YouTube. We also have The Wiggles documentary on Prime Video worldwide later this year.

One of the best parts of having more Wiggles on stage is that they each have unique skills and talents that children can relate to, so there’s something for everyone.

Luke Field

What can people expect from the new TV series by The Wiggles?

Our upcoming series boasts an exceptional collection of songs with an even greater emphasis on education. We’re particularly excited about introducing the new dance and movement segments. In addition, we had the privilege of recording a special rendition of ‘Crocodile Hunter’ at Australia Zoo, featuring Robert Irwin in tribute to his father, Steve. And filming several songs in Uluru was an absolute honour for us.

Why are The Wiggles still as popular today as they were 32 years ago?

I think it’s because our audience is at the core of everything we do. The Wiggles may have evolved regarding representation and diversity, but they still put the children at the forefront. We create memorable songs that children remember for a lifetime, we create TV shows that parents know they can trust, and we help to educate through entertainment. Anthony has a background in early childhood teaching. He continues to learn, which also sets us apart from other children’s brands.

Plus, The Wiggles are real people; we can take our show on the road and create content that many children’s brands can’t do.

Can you update us on your latest commercial partnerships?

The Wiggles always seek to align with brand partners that share our values. Our current partners include Dreamworld, Browne’s Dairy, St John WA, Transport for NSW and Queensland Government, who we partnered with to promote electrical safety. We’re always open to new collaborations and have a unique way of speaking directly to children and their parents.

Finally Luke, what can people expect from The Wiggles in 2023 and beyond?

When we’re not touring, we’ll either be in the recording studio or filming new content. Anthony is keen to incorporate animated elements into the content we create to allow us to expand creatively. We also have a new documentary launching on Prime Video globally at the end of the year. It will tell the story of The Wiggles from the start to where they are today. But the core of what we do is make entertaining and educational content for pre-schoolers, which will continue to be our priority.

Given The Wiggles’ tremendous success for over three decades, it’s only natural that they would be a top choice for retailers worldwide regarding commercial ventures. Through their extensive touring and incredible engagement with audiences globally, The Wiggles have established themselves as an evergreen trusted brand and a household name.

This article originally appeared in The Bugg Report Magazine Edition 44