Todd Newton is a Daytime Emmy Award winning game show host (Whammy!, Family Game Night, Monopoly Millionaires’ Club), author, and founder of Newton Luxury Realty in Scottsdale, Arizona. Learn more about Todd…
Hometown: St. Louis, MO
First job: From a very early age, I knew I was meant to speak into a microphone. I didn’t know how or when I was going to make that happen, but I can recall watching Johnny Carson on television and admiring the way he entertained millions of people just by being himself. He never tried to be someone else or went out of his way to find a punchline, he just allowed great moments to happen on their own. That is what led me to be a host. But the first step on that journey was answering an ad in a local St. Louis entertainment rag that was calling for an emcee. As fate would have it, the the job was for a male dance revue and I took it! At 17 years old I was working in smokey bars filled with screaming women. But it allowed me to develop my on stage persona which has led me to some pretty exciting places later on in my career.
Favorite AZ restaurant: Tough question because my culinary mood shifts every time the wind blows, but I love the omelettes at Eggstacy, having fish tacos and a drinks while sitting at the bar at SOL Cocina in the Scottsdale Quarter, and dripping BBQ sauce on my favorite t-shirt while feasting at Hole In The Wall at the Hilton. For me, a meal isn’t “great” unless I’m enjoying the company I’m keeping, and I’ve had some great times and some great food at all three of these spots.
Person who has impacted your life the most: I wrote my first book in 2012. It’s called Life in the Bonus Round: A Game Show Host’s Road to Success and Fulfillment. Chapter Three of that book was one of the most emotional pieces I’ve ever written because it is all about my grandmother, Nana. Nana was a comedienne during WWII and one of the most genuine souls I’ve ever encountered. Her love for my and for my brother is unparalleled. I don’t think I’ll ever meet another person who brings so much joy to so many and manages to do it effortlessly.
After she passed in the early nineties, I began to learn more about her from friends and family. I discovered how she struggled with diabetes for most of her life. I learned of her father who was a railroad detective and would often bring the hobos he found stowed away in empty freight cars home to have a hot meal with his family. But most importantly, I learned the value of family from Nana. I saw how nothing else mattered in her life but the people she loved and that is something I hope I am passing on to my own two kids.
Your biggest accomplishment in your eyes: Without question, my greatest achievement in life is becoming a father. I have two incredible children: Mason who is 15 and Kiki who is 11. They are my world and the reason I was dropped onto this planet. Professionally, I can’t think of anything more rewarding that being presented with the Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Game Show Host in 2012. To be recognized by my peers for work that I love doing was a thrill like no other.
The biggest obstacle you have overcome: Well, divorce is never easy. I’m sure many of your readers are nodding in agreement. Add to that the fact that mine occurred during the recession of 2008 and one can well understand why that may seem like a bit of a setback. But the way to deal with any setback is to amp up your game. Increase your focus and be diligent. Open communication, mutual respect, and understanding where the other was coming from got us through it relatively unscathed. Now my ex-wfe and I are great friends and the other’s biggest cheerleader. On top of all that I learned so much about myself throughout the process and I came out the other side stronger and wiser.
Someone who inspires you: Legendary game show host Bob Barker. When I realized that being a game show host was what I wanted to focus my professional energy on, I sought out the very best to teach me how to do it. I believe in mentorships and learning from those who are at the top of their game and no one relates to an audience better than Bob. Now that I host the touring version of The Price Is Right, Bob’s advice has helped me entertain tens of thousands across North America for more than thirteen years. He is a class act and there will never be another host like him.
Favorite quote: My favorite quote is actually and old African proverb that reads, “When you pray, move your feet.” We can dream the biggest dream and shoot for the stars in all we do but none of means a thing unless you add some good old fashioned hustle and muscle. Anything that is worth anything takes hard work and sacrifice. And it is always worth it!
Advice to someone pursuing a career path in what you do: I receive a lot of emails from young hosts looking for a way to break into the entertainment business and the best advice I can give them is to get out there and do it! Hosting is not something that is taught in school. There are no books on establishing rapport with a live audience or maximizing a pause on television. When I began my career on E! Entertainment Television in 1995, there were only four on-air hosts and we were allowed to experiment with our delivery to see what worked and what didn’t. Today the Internet offers the same freedom to fail and to grow. There are so many outlets through which an aspiring host can share his/her content and style with the world. My advice is to tackle it all head on and make no apologies for who you are or what you do.
What makes someone fabulous: ‘Fabulous’ is such an extraordinary work and, I will admit, a word that I have been incorporating into my day-to-day vocabulary since I have become a fan of your website. I think it is much like the elusive “It Factor” that we often here about someone having. It’s difficult to describe, but when you meet someone who is truly fabulous you just know it. You feel them enter a room. They command attention They make everyone around them feel as if they’ve just won the lottery. And when they leave, you can’t help but wish they’d come back for just a little longer. Those are the fabulous ones.
For more about Todd Newton, visit toddnewtononline.com.