From the New Zealand TV Weekly. May 22 1967
One of the most interesting offerings from Auckland should be the hour-long excerpt from the touring Osipov Russian group. Videotaping this was a major effort, but a sound pre-briefing for all concerned helped tremendously. Bryan Easte controlled production, and was given only six days to tie it up and have it "in the can."-Think that's easy? Try making all the contract arrangements alone and you'll see how much trouble there was, apart from planning it, sitting through four performances to make sure what excerpts were wanted, then recording it on stage. Not to mention the little worry of dealing with people who speak another language. Other centres had a tiny hand in the affair-they rushed up spare zoom lenses on loan to AKTV2 . . . . . From fiction to TV writing, with success all along the way. That's the story of Michael Noonan, one Kiwi who has done well in scriptwriting in Britain. He started in TV writing with the Flying Doctor series for Australian "telly." His visit back to Auckland was to get together with his brother, Steve Noonan, of United Artists . . . . . The ballet shows filmed in Auckland last year are finally on the programme schedules . . . . . Kick off for the afternoon women's programmes with Sonia King is set for June. Plenty of work for her to do before then . . . . . The We Three Show series for the small fry met with a sour reception. Obviously, second thoughts on its format are needed. Producer Michael Devine seems happier in front of the camera rather than behind it if some of his Town and Around appearances are taken into account . . . . . Pirate radio Hauraki now in the news-casting field . . . . . Notice the TV themes being used now for recordings by local vocalists? For example, Have a Shot winner Ann Stott's Coronation Street and Peyton Place theme recordings . . . , . C'mon could be given an overseas flavour if advantage is taken of entertainers being brought in for the Logan Park theatre-restaurant floor shows.
For fans of Mike Minehan who may have been wondering what's happened to him, the news is that the former Town and Around man has just finished editing a film on Antarctica, and is about to start work on a programme on the end of the whaling industry in New Zealand. Mike says the 40-minute programme on Antarctica features some superb photography by Wayne Williams- after editing there was enough left over for another similar programme. Wayne Williams is soon to go abroad to advance his experience. Mike plans a slightly different technique for his historical piece on the whaling industry, delving into the archives to get material of whaling in the early days . . . . . What next in the Ian Cross department? Latest is that the Column Comment man-who has been in devastating form this season-has turned his hand to churning out a pop song as the theme for his recently-completed TV play, Momma's Good Girl. Cross says he
threw some words together. Music was written by Paul Griffin, a lecturer in accountancy at Victoria University. After taping by a Wellington group (Sounds Unlimited), a record company decided to put it out commercially. The word is that it could reach the hit parade . . . . . Incidentally, a Wellington hairdresser did a noble job on the crowning glories of the four actresses in the Cross play. Apparently he was set the task of representing, a different personality in each of the four hairstyles. Should be worth seeing . . . . . Wellington mums, like Auckland's, say afternoon viewing is often better than the so-called glamour shows of the evening. Perhaps they get a bit tired by the evening? . . . . . Fred Barnes' programme Country Calender has had its moments, notably with the piece on facial eczema, but too often it does not have enough "bite." If it is to hold the attention of town viewers, it must present the problems of the countrymen in a manner both challenging and pictorially exciting. So many urban dwellers began life in rural areas that they like to see something of those regions. Too much of Country Calendar comprises static interviews that might pass in a radio programme, but have little place in a television series.
South African-born Peter Neil, who acfter a three-year stint with the NZBC, returned home to join the South African Broadcasting Corporation, apparently finds New Zealand more to his liking. Within weeks of his departure he was back with Channel 3 again. First night on was May 5 as continuity announcer, then the following two nights black to the news . . . . . Wallie Chamberlain now definitely top man in charge of announcing with a deputy yet to be named . . . . . At time of writing a little bird whispered that Stanley Hosgood of Grandstand fame would be filling the seat left vacant when production supervisor Michael Scott went to Wellington. It would be hard to think of a better choice . . . . . Remember London Sun motoring correspondent, Barrie Gill, who appeared several times on Channel 3 during the international motor racing season? Well, Barrie has just taken over a new programme with London's ITV and his first stint included an interview with none other than World Speedway Champion, Barry Briggs, who hails from Christchurch. In a recent letter, Gill described Briggs as a
great bloke and
good interview material and suggested the local Gandstand team should waste no time getting him on the screen next time he is in Christchurch . . . . A lot of people hoping that Michael Scott's Coming into Line will be shown again shortly. Trouble was it was shown on a night when many local owners, trainers, jockeys and racing fans were at Blenheim for the Marlborough Racing Club's three-day meeting, and Blenheim is served by Wellingiton's WNTV1 . . . . . Welcome acquisition to Town and Around is John O'Sullivan, who has seen all sides of the broadcasting business in the past 17 years both in New Zealand and Australia. Since 1965 he has become well-known in Christchurch as an announcer, and more and more as a radio and television interviewer. His English-born wife, Beryl, will probably be better remembered by radio listeners as daughter Jane in Life with Dexter. She finds time for free-lance work in radio plays, serials and commercials between household and motherly duties.
While the NZBC has been conducting its own survey into the affects of afternoon television on radio, the Dunedin City Council has no doubt that television matinee programmes have reduced the number of passengers using the public transport system, During the first week of April the Dunedin City Council found that it had lost £93 in fare revenue and if this keeps up over the rest of the year then the Council could be £4,836 out of pocket. Quite a gloomy prospect and all that the Council can hope for is that viewers will quickly tire of watching the box all afternoon and evening, too. However with winter fast approaching it seems certain that more housewives will prefer to stay at home toasting their feet by the fire instead of enjoying the fresh, cool air of the city transport system. City shop keepers have also noticed that there has been an increase in the number of women shopping in the mornings with a corresponding reduction in numbers during the afternoon . . . . . The opening of Parliament appears to have been a reasonable success so far as DNTV2 is concerned. The telecast was produced from a mobile van at Parliament Buildings, sent to Wellington's new television mast at Mount Kau Kau, and from there to Parnassus. It then went by micro-wave to Sugar Loaf Peak, by normal system to Mount Studholme, and then by microwave on to Dunedin. To get to Mount Studholme in time to receive the Wellington signal a DNTV2 van had to be towed over three inches of snow. Regarded purely as entertainment value a lot of viewers might wonder if the microwave journey of the opening of Parliament was really necessary.