1979: March 24-30

tvtimes_240379Cover: Tom Baker (Doctor Who

Who will play Dame Nellie?
Several Australian actresses are hoping for the lead role in the Grundy Organisation’s proposed eight-part mini-series on the life of Australia’s first great opera singer, Dame Nellie Melba.  The mini-series, to be made on location in Australia, United States, United Kingdom and Europe, will be directed by Bruce Beresford.  With a budget of $2 million for eight episodes, it is set to become Australia’s most expensive TV drama to date.

Two more stars to quit
Following the announcement that Lorraine Bayly is planning to leave The Sullivans, two more TV actresses have also quit their respective roles.  Cop Shop’s Rowena Wallace is due to finish up in the series in the next four months but will continue to be seen on screen until the end of the year.  Carol Burns, who plays lesbian bikie Franky Doyle in the new hit series Prisoner, will appear in the series until around August.  While Bayly is leaving her role to travel overseas, the other two are leaving to avoid typecasting.  “It’s up to the actress to extend her horizons,” Burns told TV Times.

ytt_1979 Having a wonderful time
Before Young Talent Time returned to screens earlier this year, host Johnny Young and the team were busy taping an outdoor special for the 0-10 Network.  The one-off special features the Young Talent Team performing songs on location at various tourist spots around Melbourne including St Kilda Beach, Royal Melbourne Zoo, Captain Cook’s Cottage and the Yarra River.  Following the Melbourne-based special, the team hope to do similar programs based in Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide, the Gold Coast, Hobart and Perth.

The cast of the stage play Bedroom Farce – including Belinda Giblin, Pat McDonald, Willie Fennell and Barry Creyton – have agreed to appear on HSV7’s upcoming Royal Children’s Hospital Good Friday Appeal.

Former Division Four actor Ted Hamilton is now a restaurateur with an establishment in Los Angeles that is becoming popular with the stars.

Singer Judy Jacques, a long-time favourite on TV in shows including In Melbourne Tonight, Dig We Must and Sounds Like Us, has returned to television after six years with a guest appearance on ATV0’s Peter Couchman Tonight, and more appearances are planned.

darylossieViewpoint: Letters to the Editor
“It’s great to see good entertainment back on TV with Hey Hey It’s Saturday. Daryl Somers and Ossie Ostrich (pictured) are a wonderful comedy team and they are funny with adults and children.  I wish they did not have what few cartoons they have on their three-hour show and have time filled with their beaut comedy.” G. Barnard, NSW

”Regarding ABC’s classic movies.  Cheers!  It’s high time we had something worth watching.  But not at the ridiculous time of 10pm and later – 8.30 or 9pm is quite late enough to start.” M Swan and G Slade, NSW.

“What a wonderful program The Curiosity Show is.   My friend and I (16 and 15 respectively) never fail to watch, as there is always at least one segment which appeals to all ages.  On the whole it’s far better, to my mind, than This Week Has Seven Days, What In The World or similar shows.” G. Coleman, TAS.

TCN9 Sydney should bring back Bobby Limb’s Sound Of Music.  When Bobby had his Sound Of Music at St George League’s Club in Sydney it was the most successful season that club had had for a long time.  People are still talking about the show.” B. Denniss.  NSW.

What’s On (March 24-30):
Weekend sport includes Australia versus Pakistan in the cricket Second Test, live from Perth on ABCATV0 has highlights of the Grand Master’s Tennis Championship from Sydney’s Hordern Pavilion.  And HSV7 on Sunday afternoon has Claremont versus Melbourne in the Australian Football Championships.

HSV7’s Penthouse is now Saturday Night Live with Ernie Sigley and new co-host Belinda Leigh.  This week’s guests include Betty Cuthbert, Bob Maumill and Sid Paterson.  Also direct coverage of harness racing from Moonee Valley and Tattslotto draw 340.

Maggie Millar and Peter Finlay are guest stars in Cop Shop (HSV7, Monday and Thursday) where a receptionist pleads confusion in an attempt to cover-up a $37,000 theft.  While Valerie (Joanna Lockwood) finds that getting a permanent job involves a lot more than she had expected.

The Paul Hogan Show (GTV9, Thursday) investigates the strange Australian ritual of BYO barbeques, while Paul Hogan takes a look at World Series Bowls.  Guest stars include the Little River Band, Karen Pini and Sue McIntosh.

Friday night sees GTV9 cross to Perth for live coverage of the 1979 Australian Pacing Derby, hosted by Garry Carvolth.

Sunday night movies: No Sex Please, We’re British (HSV7), The Legend Of Hell House (GTV9).  ATV0 presents the mini-series The Pirate on Sunday and Monday nights.

Source: TV Times (Melbourne edition), 24 March 1979.  ABC/ACP

Permanent link to this article: https://televisionau.com/2009/03/1979-march-24-30.html


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  1. I don’t remember the mini series on Dame Nellie. Did it get made?

    One that was promoted and never made was about Neil Davis, photographer, who was killed in a Bangkok coup. Better that is was not made than badly made.

  2. I don’t think this one ever got made, though there was a mini-series Melba some years later in 1987.

  3. Was racking my brain trying to remember that mini-series, could only remember the late 80’s one, thank goodness I’m not going mad lol.

    Hmmm complaints about cartoons on Hey Hey It’s Saturday?
    Someone obviously forgot the show was originally titled Cartoon Corner and hosted by another chap (former footballer I think?) whom Daryl replaced when he had a mild illness !

  4. Hi Jayne, I’m not sure about Cartoon Corner but the original Hey Hey It’s Saturday started in 1971 with Daryl Somers and Peter McKenna, a Collingwood footballer who was later replaced by Ossie Ostrich.

  5. Yep, it was called Cartoon Corner with both Daryl and Peter hosting, then it changed titles and hosts.
    I’ve got a reply to my (very young) fan mail floating around the house here somewhere.
    Actually I have the vague impression Cartoon Corner was more Peter McKenna’s vehicle with Daryl the co-host.

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