Early Armchair theatre on videotape

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ArchiveTvfan43
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Early Armchair theatre on videotape

Post by ArchiveTvfan43 »

Recently bought the volume 4 dvd and was surprised to see the play "lord arthur savile's crime" 3 January 1960 survives on videotape. It appears to be the earliest armchair theatre to survive on tape. The second earliest play on videotape seems to be "after the funeral" 3 April 1960 as the BFI hold the original 2 inch videotape of it. Sadly it hasn't been released yet.

ArchiveTvfan43
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Re: Early Armchair theatre on videotape

Post by ArchiveTvfan43 »

I haven't bought the armchair theatre archive releases yet but it would appear judging by the clips on youtu.be that network accessed the original telerecording negatives for much of the plays as they are very good quality

fatcat
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Re: Early Armchair theatre on videotape

Post by fatcat »

In the IMDB 'unknown season' section it contains a few of the plays that were never transmitted in the first place, obviously not the mid 50s ones but a few of the later ones rather curiously still survive on tape apparently including The Blood Knot which may have strayed too far into S.African politics?..or one-time producer Leonard White did imply once that such was the production rate of AT that the schedule sometimes didn't have the slots to show all of them.

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0161126/episodes?season=-1

ATV's rival the very neglected 'Drama 61-66' looks just that little bit more exciting and glamorous compared to AT.

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0969924/episodes?season=2


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ArchiveTvfan43
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Re: Early Armchair theatre on videotape

Post by ArchiveTvfan43 »

I may be wrong but old man's fancy I think is the only unbroadcast play to be released on dvd? It's included as a extra on the volume 3 dvd set

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Re: Early Armchair theatre on videotape

Post by ArchiveTvfan43 »

I'm glad we have the Magnum for schneider "Callan" pilot but a shame the pilot of "never mind the quality feel the width" is missing. Thames kept all plays from 1970-74 but wiped all of their 1969 plays. Only the play "Edward the confessor" has been recovered on a 16mm telerecording.

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Re: Early Armchair theatre on videotape

Post by fatcat »

The 1969 season had a few plays I would have liked to have seen,
but the 1970 on, ones that were shown on TPTV I found a mixed bag of not bad - to creaky and dull.

They did not show 1970's The Others which I reckon would have been a good un.

ian b
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Re: Early Armchair theatre on videotape

Post by ian b »

ArchiveTvfan43 wrote:
Tue Apr 13, 2021 9:37 am
I'm glad we have the Magnum for schneider "Callan" pilot but a shame the pilot of "never mind the quality feel the width" is missing. Thames kept all plays from 1970-74 but wiped all of their 1969 plays. Only the play "Edward the confessor" has been recovered on a 16mm telerecording.
Which Studio Canal seems to own - there's no credit to Fremantle on Network's Archive release. Was EDWARD a re-branded ABC production?

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Re: Early Armchair theatre on videotape

Post by ian b »

ArchiveTvfan43 wrote:
Mon Apr 12, 2021 2:14 pm
I haven't bought the armchair theatre archive releases yet but it would appear judging by the clips on youtu.be that network accessed the original telerecording negatives for much of the plays as they are very good quality
Not all are great quality, being returned sales prints - THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST is one that is ident-less, ad-break hacked, scratchy, tramlined and dirty. And AFTERNOON OF A NYMPH is, alas, a camera copy of the original 405-line tape which has long-since been junked. Better than nowt, mind.

ian b
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Re: Early Armchair theatre on videotape

Post by ian b »

fatcat wrote:
Mon Apr 12, 2021 10:20 pm
In the IMDB 'unknown season' section it contains a few of the plays that were never transmitted in the first place, obviously not the mid 50s ones but a few of the later ones rather curiously still survive on tape apparently including The Blood Knot which may have strayed too far into S.African politics?..or one-time producer Leonard White did imply once that such was the production rate of AT that the schedule sometimes didn't have the slots to show all of them.
I make it seven finished productions that never made it to air, all of which survive:

A) 1959 - Three On A Gas Ring (writer: David Osborn/director: Philip Saville)
B) recorded May 1963 - The Blood Knot (Athol Fugard/ Charles Jarrott)
C) recorded April 1964 - The Bandstand (Guy Compton/Philip Saville)
D) recorded December 1964 - Unexpected Summer (Gwendolyn Gazeley/?)
E) recorded December 1964 - Old Man’s Fancy (Evan Jones/Toby Robertson)
F) 1965 - And There It Stops - (Alan Seymour/Raymond Menmuir)
G) 1967/8 (?) - Two On A Tightrope

UNEXPECTED SUMMER was included on the third volume of Network's releases, and TWO ON A TIGHTROPE is available to view at a BFI Mediatheque.

THREE ON A GAS RING deals with abortion, and seems to have been pulled on the advice of the ITA, Leonard White says in his ARMCHAIR THEATRE THE LOST YEARS book that THE BLOOD KNOT kept being pencilled in to the schedules before slipping out again and eventually the rights to the script ran out. But he gives no clues as to why the later plays were never shown, other than the "too many plays, not enough slots" one.

TWO ON A TIGHTROPE appears to be the production that White forgets the name of, but thinks never completed recording. Which doesn't seem to be the case!

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Re: Early Armchair theatre on videotape

Post by fatcat »

ian b wrote:
Sun May 09, 2021 4:48 pm


I make it seven finished productions that never made it to air, all of which survive:

A) 1959 - Three On A Gas Ring (writer: David Osborn/director: Philip Saville)
B) recorded May 1963 - The Blood Knot (Athol Fugard/ Charles Jarrott)
C) recorded April 1964 - The Bandstand (Guy Compton/Philip Saville)
D) recorded December 1964 - Unexpected Summer (Gwendolyn Gazeley/?)
E) recorded December 1964 - Old Man’s Fancy (Evan Jones/Toby Robertson)
F) 1965 - And There It Stops - (Alan Seymour/Raymond Menmuir)
G) 1967/8 (?) - Two On A Tightrope

UNEXPECTED SUMMER was included on the third volume of Network's releases, and TWO ON A TIGHTROPE is available to view at a BFI Mediatheque.

THREE ON A GAS RING deals with abortion, and seems to have been pulled on the advice of the ITA, Leonard White says in his ARMCHAIR THEATRE THE LOST YEARS book that THE BLOOD KNOT kept being pencilled in to the schedules before slipping out again and eventually the rights to the script ran out. But he gives no clues as to why the later plays were never shown, other than the "too many plays, not enough slots" one.

TWO ON A TIGHTROPE appears to be the production that White forgets the name of, but thinks never completed recording. Which doesn't seem to be the case!
Thanks for that Ian.
I am pleasantly surprised that GAS RING and UNEXPECTED SUMMER survive.

I had this image of an old dear (Gwen Gazeley) writing one play in her life, getting disappointed over Christmas, then spent the rest of her life waiting for it to appear.

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Re: Early Armchair theatre on videotape

Post by fatcat »

fatcat wrote:
Sun May 09, 2021 7:03 pm
ian b wrote:
Sun May 09, 2021 4:48 pm


I make it seven finished productions that never made it to air, all of which survive:

A) 1959 - Three On A Gas Ring (writer: David Osborn/director: Philip Saville)
B) recorded May 1963 - The Blood Knot (Athol Fugard/ Charles Jarrott)
C) recorded April 1964 - The Bandstand (Guy Compton/Philip Saville)
D) recorded December 1964 - Unexpected Summer (Gwendolyn Gazeley/?)
E) recorded December 1964 - Old Man’s Fancy (Evan Jones/Toby Robertson)
F) 1965 - And There It Stops - (Alan Seymour/Raymond Menmuir)
G) 1967/8 (?) - Two On A Tightrope

UNEXPECTED SUMMER was included on the third volume of Network's releases, and TWO ON A TIGHTROPE is available to view at a BFI Mediatheque.

THREE ON A GAS RING deals with abortion, and seems to have been pulled on the advice of the ITA, Leonard White says in his ARMCHAIR THEATRE THE LOST YEARS book that THE BLOOD KNOT kept being pencilled in to the schedules before slipping out again and eventually the rights to the script ran out. But he gives no clues as to why the later plays were never shown, other than the "too many plays, not enough slots" one.

TWO ON A TIGHTROPE appears to be the production that White forgets the name of, but thinks never completed recording. Which doesn't seem to be the case!
Thanks for that Ian.
I am pleasantly surprised that GAS RING and UNEXPECTED SUMMER survive.

I had this sad image of an old dear (Gwen Gazeley) writing one play in her life, getting disappointed over Christmas, then spent the rest of her life waiting for it to appear.

ArchiveTvfan43
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Re: Early Armchair theatre on videotape

Post by ArchiveTvfan43 »

I thought "Three on a gas ring" is missing? It is listed as such on Kaleidoscopes TVBrain

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