Friday, April 25, 2014
When ABC-TV was viewed as less than a network, in the 1960's, the then third-placed web had but one glittering, crowning jewel on its prime time schedule.
Amid an ocean of winsome sitcoms, urbane spies, world weary cops and wholesome cowboys.
It was a throwback to a simpler, but perhaps more elegant, time in show business: a star-studded vaudeville revue.
Produced in modest studio that was a retro-fitted theater, ABC-TV engaged two of the brightest producers in commercial television to mount a bombastic variety show , replete with comedy, music and novelty acts that would be in league with legends like Sullivan and Caesar.
There would be rotating hosts who ran the gamut from Fred Astaire to Bing Crosby to Adam West in his Batman persona.
Bill Harbach and Nick Vanoff, both veterans of Steve Allen's landmark TONIGHT SHOW on NBC-TV, were charged shaping a show that would embody classic showbiz values ,while attracting viewers from the Baby-Boom generation,.
What they created was THE HOLLYWOOD PALACE.