CTVA US Anthology - "Producers' Showcase" (NBC) Season 3 (1956-57)

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 Season 3 (NBC) (1956-57)
Episode Guide compiled by The Classic TV Archive
with contributions by:  Rina Fox
references:
TV Guide / Library of Congress (telnet://locis.loc.gov)
Internet Movie Database (http://us.imdb.com)
UCLA Film and Television Archive


############# Producers' Showcase ############
############## season 3 1956-57 ##############
############### (final season) ###############
NBC Mondays (every 4th week) 

Ep 3.01 Producers' Showcase: THE LORD DON'T PLAY FAVORITES

17Sep1956 NBC Mon

written by Jo Swerling & Hal Stanley

story by Patrick Malloy

directed by Clark Jones

starring

Robert Stack

Louis Armstrong

Dick Haymes

Buster Keaton

Kay Starr

Synopsis:

The story of small-time traveling circus stranded in a drought-stricken small Kansas town,

subjected to huge fine by city fathers as a way of raising money to pay for a professional

rain-maker, when the circus needed money to enter its trick horse in the county races, with

circus duping yokels into paying the race fee to the circus ringmaster posing as the rain-maker.

*Note: an original musical play, with Jo Swerling and Hal Stanley adapting book from

Patrick Malloy's short story, with music by Hal Stanley and lyrics by Irving Taylor.

 

Ep 3.02 Producers' Showcase: THE LETTER

15Oct1956 NBC Mon

written by Joseph Schrank

story by W. Somerset Maugham

directed by William Wyler (his television debut)(backed up by Kirk Browning)

starring

Michael Rennie ....... Howard Joyce

Siobhan McKenna ....... Leslie Crosbie

John Mills ....... Robert Crosbie

Cathleen Cordell ....... Mrs. Joyce

Aki Aleong ....... Ong Chi Seng

Anna May Wong ....... Chinese Woman

John Irving ....... John Withers

Synopsis:

British southeast Asia plantation wife having an affair kills her lover before he can leave her

for a Chinese woman, claiming self-defense, but the Chinese woman has the letter which the

murderess wrote to her lover to set up the meeting; she steals her still-unaware husband's

savings so that her lawyer can buy the letter back to protect the reputation of the husband,

who is his friend; the wife is acquitted at the trial for lack of evidence, but when the husband

learns the truth, he rejects her.

 

Ep 3.03 Producers' Showcase: JACK AND THE BEANSTALK

12Nov1956 NBC Mon

Produced by Alvin Cooperman

Written by Helen Deutsch

Directed by Clark Jones

Original musical version of the classic children's tale

Music by Jerry Livingston and lyrics by Helen Deutsch

Sets and costumes by Reuben Ter-Arutunian

With vocal arrangements by Ray Charles

starring

Joel Grey ....... Jack

Celeste Holm ....... Mad Meggie

Leora Dana ....... Mother

Peggy King ....... Tillie the Girl Next Door

Cyril Ritchard ....... the Peddler

Dennis King ....... Narrator

Arnold Stang ....... Mr. Fum

Billy Gilbert ....... Mr. Poopledoop/The Giant

Synopsis 1:

As the Peddler who exchanges the magic beans for Jack's cow,

Cyril sang THERE ONCE WAS A BOY AND HIS NAME WAS JACK

and THIS IS THE ONE about the cow.

Later in the plot, Cyril and Celeste Holm, revealed as having plotted to

bring Jack to the Giant's land in order for him to slay the giant,

sing THE BIGGER THEY ARE THE HARDER THEY FALL

This production seemed heavily influenced by the 1939 WIZARD OF OZ,

in that everything turned out to be a dream, and the characters Jack met in the

Giant's land were played mainly by the same actors he knew in his hometown,

Billy Gilbert appearing as both the town bully and the giant.

Synopsis 2:

Psychological twist is added: Jack not only conquers the giant,

but also conquers his own fears and insecurity and grows up.

Synopsis 3:

Jack is a teenage ne'er-do-well who lives on a farm with his

nagging mother. The story tells how, with others' help, he

redeems himself and those around him.

Songs:

"Ballad of Jack and the Beanstalk" .... Chorus
"This is the One" ..................... Ritchard, Grey
"He Never Looks My Way" ............... King
"Where Are the White Birds Flying"..... Holm
"People Should Listen to Me" .......... Gilbert
"Sweet World" ......................... Grey
"The March of the Ill-Assorted Guards.. Chorus
"Twelve Feet Tall" .................... Ritchard, Holm, Grey
"Looka Me" ............................ Grey
"I'll Go Along With You" .............. King

 

Ep 3.04 Producers' Showcase: FESTIVAL OF MUSIC (Second Edition)

10Dec1956 NBC Mon

directed by Kirk Browning

produced by Sol Hurok

hosted by Josť Ferrer

starring

Victoria De Los Angeles

Barry Morrell

Elizabeth Doubleday

Virginio Assandri

Boris Christoff

Nicola Moscona

Michael Pollock

Arthur Newman (in opening scene of Verdi's "La Traviata")

Marian Anderson ("Heav'n, Heav'n," "My Lord, What a Mornin'," "Roll, Jord'n Roll")

pianist Artur Rubenstein (Rachmaninoff's "Rhapsodie on a Theme by Paganini,")

Alfred Wallenstein conducting the Symphony of the Air Orchestra

guitarist Andres Segovia (Gavotte by J.S. Bach, Allegretto by M. Torroba)

Kirk Jordan (Last Act Death Scene from Mussorgsky's "Boris Gudonov")

As well as a large supporting cast.

Program:
Act 1 "La Traviata" ....... Verdi
Victoria de los Angeles, soprano
Richard Tucker, tenor
Death Scene "Boris Godunoff" ...... Moussorgsky
Boris Christoff, bass
Nicola Moscona, bass
Selected Spirituals ............... Traditional
Marian Anderson, contralto
Guitar Selections ................. Various
Andres Segovia
"Variations on a Theme of Paganini" .... Rachmaninoff

Artur Rubinstein, pianist

Synopsis:

Once again impresario S. Hurok brings to the television screen 90 minutes of

music performed by outstanding artists. The singers and instrumentalists

will be accompanied by the Symphony of the Air under the baton of

Alfred Wallenstein. A large chorus and corps de ballet are featured.

This concert offers fewer performers than the previous Festival. [RF]

 

Ep 3.05 Producers' Showcase: WIDE, WIDE WORLD II

06Jan1957  NBC Mon

directed by Delbert Mann

produced by Herbert Sussan

starring

Helen Keller

Polly Thomson

Katharine Cornell

David Garroway

 

Ep 3.06 Producers' Showcase: RUGGLES OF RED GAP

03Feb1957 NBC Mon

Adapted by David Shaw

Based on the novel by Harry Leon Wilson

Directed by Clark Jones

Assistant director Dominick Dunne

Music by Jule Styne,

Lyrics by Leo Robin

Music arranged and conducted by Buddy Bregman

hosted by Garry Moore

starring

Michael Redgrave

David Wayne

Imogene Coca

Jane Powell

Peter Lawford

Paul Lynde

Musical version of classic tale of English butler who is "lost" in a poker game by

his noble English employer to a nouveau riche couple from out West,

who charms the community and resigns from service to open a restaurant.

 

Ep 3.07 Producers' Showcase: MAYERLING

24Feb1957  NBC Mon (Jan 9, 1956)

written by Irmgard von Cube & Andrew McCullough

story by Jean Scholpfer (under pseudonym Claude Anet)

directed by Anatole Litvak

starring

Audrey Hepburn ....... Maria Vetsera

Mel Ferrer ....... Prince Rudolph of Habsburg

Raymond Massey ....... The Prime Minister

Diana Wynyard ....... The Empress

Lorne Greene

Nehemiah Persoff

Nancy Marchand

David Opatoshu

Michael Evans

Basil Sydney

Pippa Scott

Monique van Vooren

Barry Kroeger

Charles Mendick

John Irving

Peter Donat

Suzy Parker

Lilia Skala
Synopsis:

Based on the true story set in the Austro-Hungarian capital in which married Crown Prince

Rudolph of Habsburg meets and falls in love with the beautiful Countess Maria Vetsera,

only to join her in a murder/suicide pact after his father Emperor Franz Josef ordered

him to break off the romance.
*Note: Television version of classic movie, in turn based on novel "Idyl's End"

by Jean Scholpfer, writing under pseudonym Claude Anet, adapted by Irmgard von Cube

and Andrew McCullough, produced, directed and staged by Anatole Litvak in

his television debut, directed for television by Kirk Browning,

Ep 3.08 Producers' Showcase: ROMEO AND JULIET

04Mar1957 NBC Mon

Adapted by Joseph Schrank

Based on the play by William Shakespeare

Directed by Clark Jones
Supervised directing by Michael Benthall (for the Old Vic)
Incidental music composed by Brian Easdale
produced by Sol Hurok
starring
Claire Bloom .......... Juliet
John Neville .......... Romeo
Paul Rogers ........... Mercutio
Jeremy Brett .......... Paris
Richard Wordsworth .... Tybalt
Jack Gwillim .......... Friar Laurence
Margaret Courtenay .... Lady Capulet
Ernest Hare ........... Capulet
Denis Holmes .......... Montague
Charles Gray .......... Escalus, Prince of Verona
Wynne Clark ........... Nurse
Job Stewart ........... Peter
Ronald Allen .......... Benvolio
Jennifer Wilson ....... Lady in waiting
Synopsis:
Two families of Verona, Italy, the Montagues and the Capulets, are involved in a deadly feud.

 When the son of the Montagues, Romeo, falls rapturously in love with the Capulet's

 daughter Juliet, the two overcome a dozen obstacles to meet and in secret to marry.

But a street brawl brings about Romeo's exile; Juliet is to be forced into another marriage.

 Their romance ends in death for both. [RF]
*Note: This marks the U.S. television debut of the Old Vic Company,

the most distinguished in England.
 

Ep 3.09 Producers' Showcase: THE GREAT SEBASTIANS

01Apr1957 NBC Mon

written by Howard Lindsay & Russel Crouse

directed by Franklin Schaffner

starring

Lynn Fontanne ........ Essie Sebastian

Alfred Lunt ......... Rudi Sebastian

Akim Tamiroff ......... General Otakar Zandek

Lisa Ferraday ......... Vlasta Habova

Simon Oakland ........... Sergeant Javorsky

Anne Francine ......... Colonel Bradacova

Arny Freeman ........... Josef

Eugenia Rawls ........... Sophie Cerny

Martin Brandt .......... 1st Security Policeman
Peter Gumeny ....... 2nd Security Policeman

with

Stefan Schnabel, Boris Tumarin

Alan Furlan, Rebecca Sand

Synopsis 1:
On the day in 1948 when Jan Masaryk dies, Essie and Rudi Sebastian, a second-rate

mind-reading act, are winding up their appearance at a theater in Prague, Czechoslovakia, and

preparing to return to England. Backstage they receive two visitors. One is a lady colonel of the

Czech Army who suggests that they donate a substantial portion of their earnings to a government

welfare fund. The second is General Otakar Zandek who invites them to perform that night at a party

for Communist officials. In very short order the Great Sebastians are snarled in political intrigue.
Synopsis 2:
Show: television version of comedy-melodrama Broadway play set in Communist Prague in 1948,

by Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse, adapted by them, directed by Franklin Schaffner; set in

Prague in 1948, comedy-melodrama of vaudeville mind-reading team commanded by Communist

general to entertain at a private party to use their talents to ferret out traitors; they are asked to falsely

swear that the patriot Masaryk was depressed, thus excusing his apparent murder; they refuse,

and escape by using their stage tricks.

 

Ep 3.10 Producers' Showcase: CINDERELLA

29Apr1957 NBC Mon

written by Frederick Ashton

directed by Clark Jones

produced by Sol Hurok

starring

Margot Fonteyn

Michael Somes

Frederick Ashton

Kenneth MacMillan

Svetlana Beriosova

Philip Chatfield

Show: Sol Hurok presentation of Sadler's Wells Ballet Company (n/k/a The Royal Ballet)

of ballet set to music by Sergei Prokofiev; directed by Clark Jones; choreographed and

adapted for television by Frederick Ashton; featuring Margot Fonteyn, Michael Somes,

Frederick Ashton, Kenneth MacMillan, Svetlana Beriosova, Philip Chatfield,

 and the entire corps de ballet.

 

Ep 3.11 Producers' Showcase: MR. BROADWAY

11May1957 NBC Mon

written by Sam & Bella Spewack

directed by Sidney Lumet

starring

Mickey Rooney .......... George M. Cohan

Eddie Foy Jr.

Teresa Brewer

Garry Moore

Gloria DeHaven

June Havoc

Roberta Sherwood

Show: Musical version of rags-to-Vaudeville-riches life of George M. Cohan, written for

television by Sam and Bella Spewack, with music and lyrics by George M. Cohan; directed

by Sidney Lumet; musical numbers and choreography staged by Peter Gennaro; songs include

 "Give My Regards to Broadway," "Harrigan," "Over There," "Yankee Doodle Dandy," and

 "You're a Grand Old Flag;"

 

Ep 3.12 Producers' Showcase: FESTIVAL OF MAGIC  [Final Episode]

27May1957 NBC Mon

written by Ernie Kovacs

based on an idea by David Jacobson & Hal Friedman

directed by Charles S. Dubin

musical director George Bassman

magic co-ordinator, Milburne Christopher

produced by Mort Abrahams

starring

Ernie Kovacs

Peter Hanley

Henry Lascoe

Dean Almquist

Jimmy Yohan

 Sid Raymond

Joe Callaway
Synopsis:

Hosted by Ernie Kovacs (who doubles as amateur magician whose acts fail miserably),

features world famous magicians from seven countries performing their best-known acts:

Milbourne Christopher (American who catches bullet in his teeth), Richard Cardini

(British, performing sleight-of-hand), Robert Harbin (South African escape artist who

gets out of strait jacket while suspended upside down in mid-air), June Merlin (Irish animal

 specialist who works with white mice and rabbits), Sorcar (India, buzz-sawing woman in half),

Rene Septembre (France animal specialist), Mr. and Mrs. Li King Si (Chinese sword jugglers)

############# Producers' Showcase ############
################### the end ##################
##############################################

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