From New Zealand TV Weekly, May 16, 1966


Producer Frank Hobson is leaving to join an advertising agency, his Royal Tour chores over ... Scripting for the up-coming junior hand-puppet series Quack and Bimbo is done on a long-range basis. Writer Penelope Joy is sending the scripts from Spain ... No special Festival Report this year. Instead, Festival items will be included in the nightly Town and Around ... Cherry Riaymond may be called in as a special reporter for Festival subjects. What’s the betting the first “live” racing telecast during the Queen Mother’s visit to Auckland will spark off a further demand for regular “live” cover of races? ... The outside broadcast direct from Rotorua during the Queen Mother’s visit was one of the longest yet attempted in NZ... Consensus of opinion on Dinah Lee’s A Swingin’ Safari culotte rig: Erk! ... Auditions are going along steadily for the Revue '66, adult variety show slated for about mid-year ... Odd sight outside AKTV2 studio: Some religious enthusiast’s car bearing a huge placard, Repent for the Day of Judgment Neareth. Could have been a caustic critic... Local Town and Around settling down after a rather shaky start ... Studio executive’s comment on Brian Easte’s busy schedule. It’s the Australian approach. They expect to work like that.


Remember Maurice Smyth, the young Northern Irishman who once featured in an extraordinary interview with Eartha Kitt? Maurice re- turned home, to Belfast eighteen months ago, got married, and is now coming back to New Zealand. He hopes to get a job again with the NZBC in front of the cameras. Most people thought he earned a medal with his Kitt contact ... The half-finished tower on Kau Kau (this column last week) is already having some effect on local screens. It is causing ghosting by irradiating signals sent out from Mt Victoria. NZBC engineers say the ghosting will disappear when the Mt Victoria transmitter is closed down. Quite a long time to wait ... Producer Gordon Bick is on the job still with Compass despite some reports that he had had a run-in with NZBC chiefs over the programme. Cost-conscious officials were said to be unhappy at the way the programme was exceeding the budget; in turn Bick was said to be unhappy at cuts made in one of his programmes. Differences have obviously been sorted out: after a month’s absence, it will be back again in June-but on a fortnightly basis. A victory for someone? ... Longtime Wellington "Evening Post" man, Alan Ewart, has moved to a sub-editorial desk in the NZBC head office newsroom.


David Combridge has made a welcome return to Channel 3 programmes with his highly entertaining and informative In the Garden series. Mr Combridge is a definite TV personality with an easy, friendly informality that inevitably awakens the interest of even the most apathetic gardener. Scope of the series has been widened this year with topics including information on the latest techniques for commercial gardeners, interviews and the scientific aspects of horticulture as well as landscape architecture. These last two topics have been given added interest with the help of Lincoln Agricultural College. Chris Williams produces... Survival, the patchy early-evening series, ended up on CHTV3 screens on April 20 on a morbidly low note, the subject being suicide prevention. Screened from about 6.34 pm. it was right in the middle of the peak juvenile viewing slot. Either some one boobed badly, or those responsible must be lacking in taste and discretion. The series must have been pretty cheap in the first place so the NZBC would not have suffered any great loss if the last programme in the series had been dropped. Some people in the advertising and newspaper business believe that it is more than just coincidence that Christchurch’s Saturday night sports paper has been given a facelift and fresh look. The move is being interpreted in some quarters as an indication that the long-awaited "second channel" is not so far away as some people have been led to believe and competition between the two media is going to be a lot tougher


Raewyn Lamb, who was kissed goodbye weekly on the DNTV2 quiz show, Make Your Mark, has kissed DNTV2 goodbye - in the meantime. She's off to be an announcer at 3XC, Timaru ... Receptionist and sometime make-up assistant Pat Houston is cooking lots of porridge these days-not for herself, but for Nikki, her new Corgi ... According to Supervising Technician, Graeme Burrow, DNTV2 often as not benefits from being the "baby" of the NZBC-TV stations. Usually last to receive technical expansion, this low man on the TV totem cashes in with more advanced equipment and also with planning that benefits from errors in judgement made at the other stations. So it is with DNTV2’s new continuity suite and its control room. For the first time DNTVZ will be able to produce in one studio, while on the air in another. But the long wait for this new freedom has brought the reward of the most flexible and safe equipment in the country - flexible in that the control panel in the continuity studio includes a semi- production-type vision mixer, safe in that up to nine events ahead may be selected, considerably simplifying on air decisions and lessening the possibilities of error ... June Porter of Programmes has had a new drink named for her. Jufre, she says, is a concoction blending whisky, Dutch brandy, Dutch gin, Dutch beer and orange squash. June assures us it is delicious! She adds that she was too busy watching the reactions of others sampling the drink to make the mistake of over-sampling herself.

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