Jane Kennedy has quit the national Triple M drive program she co-hosts with Mick Molloy just two days before the 2021 radio ratings season begins.
The surprise move was announced by Triple M on Friday afternoon, shortly after the show's staff were informed.
Jane Kennedy has stepped down from her national Triple M drive program.Credit:Kristoffer Paulsen
Kennedy, 56, has five teenaged children with 58-year-old husband Rob Sitch. The pair are among the founding members of the successful Australian film and television production company, Working Dog.
In a statement, the popular presenter said the demands of her daily Kennedy Molloy program, which launched in October 2017, proved too difficult to balance with the needs of her family.
"When I first accepted this amazing job, I joked about leaving my kids at home to go and have a bit of fun for a couple of hours a day at work," Kennedy said.
If she says she's got too much on her plate then that's the end of the argument.
"The truth is [that] doing a show like Kennedy Molloy is so much more than that. It's a show I cared about 24/7. This year marks my third VCE/HSC student in a row and I think most parents will understand what that means, particularly during a COVID lockdown bubble. I tried to make both work but it's just become too hard to keep that balance in check so I'm waving the white flag."
To comply with lockdown restrictions, Kennedy spent much of 2020 co-hosting the show from her Melbourne home.
In April, she was hospitalised after falling off a ladder while trying to strap a wildlife camera to a tree in her backyard. In October, she took a break from broadcasting while one of her children completed their secondary school studies.
"Mick Molloy is the funniest person in Australia and it has been a joy and privilege to work with him," Kennedy said. "We are great friends … I am so sad to leave but I will listen everyday."
Starting Monday, Molloy will host the program – to be renamed Molloy – by himself.
Molloy and Kennedy began hosting Triple M’s drive show in October 2017.
"Jane Kennedy is the funniest, smartest, toughest chick I know," Molloy said, describing her as "irreplaceable".
"If she says she's got too much on her plate then that's the end of the argument. Jane will be missed by me, our team and anyone who enjoys listening to cracking radio. I guess I will have to chalk this up as yet another significant relationship with a woman that didn't last as long as I would have liked."
Mike Fitzpatrick, head of the Triple M network, said: "The past year has created an opportunity for many of us to reassess our lifestyle priorities and I think there's a lot of people going into 2021 with a renewed focus on what's most important in our lives.
"As for Mick punching on with his own show, he's got more than a few runs on the board."
A Triple M spokeswoman said Kennedy, Molloy and the station's bosses would provide no further comment.
In the final ratings survey of 2020, Triple M attracted an audience share of 6.5 per cent in the 4pm to 7pm slot in Melbourne and 6.7 per cent in Sydney. These figures reflect the performance of both the Kennedy Molloy program, which aired for two hours from 4pm, and The Rush Hour show at 6pm.
Kennedy Molloy often exceeded 1 million listeners each week across Australia.
Molloy will air nationally on Triple M from 4pm this Monday.
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