TV Nites and Dazes

by Jack Keegan


In the early days of TV everything was live, No Video Tape. Many things happened,walls were moved in and out by stagehands who had been given the wrong cues. Having lived through these times, I'll explain them as I was part of the scene.

Martin Kane, Private Eye

In one episode a character was shot and fell to the floor apparently dead. A few seconds later he stands up and walks off.
What happened?
Stage manager was to tap him on foot, to let him know they had gone to close up shot. However in the transition a cameral cable hit his feet, thinking that was his cue he got up in full view of the camera and walked off the set. So much for live TV.

During A Milton Berle rehearsal

Girl Dancers complained that they could not hear the cues in their dressing room for them to report on stage. I was assigned to rectify the problem. Knocking on their door and entering, there were about six girls in all stages of undress mostly naked as they were changing costumes. I called out very loud, "Ladies close you eyes, I'm coming through"
I reset the volume control and all was well. We later wired around the volume control and set the level from the control room. No more problems.

Broadway Open House. With Jerry Lester

Commercials were done live. The announcer on the show was selected to do the beer commercials live, however he hated beer.
When time came he took a sip of beer held it in his mouth, and waited for cameras to go to close ups. Thinking that they had gone to a close up he spit the beer into a pail, in full view of the camera. That ended those commercials for him, it was the last one he did for that beer.

More Broadway Open House

Dagmar, She with the well endowed mammary glands. After one show, she mingled with some members of the audience. One of them pointing to her breasts, asked her if they were real. At that point she unhooked her bra, letting them pop out and said,"Why don't you squeeze them and see for yourself"

Only in America.


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