On This Day — 24 February

24 February 1971: Elspeth Ballantyne and Dennis Miller (Bellbird)

24 February 1973: Tony Barber (Temptation / The Great Temptation)

24 February 1979: John Orcsik and Paula Duncan (Cop Shop)

24 February 1979: Peter Lochran, Chris Orchard, Diana McLean (The Young Doctors)

24 February 1990: Simone Buchanan (Hey Dad!)

24 February 1996: Kimberley Davies (Neighbours)

24 February 1962: BP Super Show presents a special tribute to Australia’s top radio presenter Jack Davey, hosted by his friend and rival Bob Dyer. Davey was incredibly popular and prolific during the ‘golden days’ of radio in the 1930s, ’40s and ’50s but due to ill-health only had a short career in television. He passed away in 1959 at the age of 52.

24 February 1992: ABC debuts sketch comedy series Gillies And Company and arts program Review.

24 February 1998: Georgie Parker leads the cast in Seven‘s new drama All Saints. The series focused on the staff of Ward 17 at the fictional All Saints Western General Hospital. The series also debuted with cast Judith McGrath, Ben Tari, Libby Tanner, Jeremy Cumpston, Kirrily White, Andrew McKaige, Sam Healy and Martin Lynes.

Permanent link to this article: https://televisionau.com/2024/02/on-this-day-24-february.html

On This Day — 23 February

23 February 1966: Graham Kennedy (In Melbourne Tonight)

23 February 1974: Carl Bleazby and Dorothy Bradley (Bellbird)

23 February 1980: Anne Semler and Syd Heylen (Arcade)

23 February 1980: George Negus, Ray Martin, Gerald Stone, Ian Leslie (60 Minutes)

23 February 1991: Tammy MacIntosh (Chances)

23 February 2002: Ada Nicodemou and Max Theoharis (Home And Away)

23 February 2008: Ryan Moloney and Carla Bonner (Neighbours)

23 February 1981: Network Ten revives the breakfast news format with the debut of Good Morning Australia, hosted by Gordon Elliott and Sue Kellaway.

23 February 1993: Hugo Weaving, Heather Mitchell, Andy Anderson and Victoria Longley star in Lust, the opening episode of the ABC anthology series Seven Deadly Sins.

23 February 1995: The daily adventures of vet Peter Trembath are covered in the new six-part documentary series The Flying Vet (ABC).

23 February 1998: James O’Neil hosts Seven‘s new afternoon game show, Hot Streak.

23 February 2000: The Mole, a reality competition based on a Belgian format, debuts on Seven, hosted by Grant Bowler.

23 February 2009: The Cut, a six-part drama exploring the sometimes murky world of sports management, debuts on ABC. Starring John Wood, Matt Passmore, Ben Oxenbould and Julieanne Newbould.

23 February 2012: Network Ten launches its new morning show Breakfast with Paul Henry, Andrew Rochford, Kathryn Robinson and Magdalena Roze (pictured) Breakfast battle takes on an early start [2012]

Permanent link to this article: https://televisionau.com/2024/02/on-this-day-23-february.html

On This Day — 22 February

22 February 1962: Bert Newton (The Channel Nine Show) and Graham Kennedy (In Melbourne Tonight)

22 February 1967: Bobby Limb (Sound Of Music)

22 February 1975: Mike Preston (Bellbird)

22 February 1975: Denise Drysdale (The Ernie Sigley Show)

22 February 1992: Sophie Lee

22 February 1997: Colin Friels and Catherine McClements (Water Rats)

22 February 2003: Erik Thomson and Georgie Parker (All Saints)

22 February 1990: SBS launches a new series, Viva World Cup, hosted by Les Murray and Andy Paschalidis in the lead-up to the 1990 World Cup, including reports on the venues, personalities and the final 24 teams.

22 February 1992: Nine debuts its new Saturday morning show, Saturday At Rick’s, featuring Steven Jacobs with Tania Lacy, featuring cartoons, video clips and interviews.

Permanent link to this article: https://televisionau.com/2024/02/on-this-day-22-february.html

Obituary: John Barton

John Barton, former journalist and TV presenter, has died peacefully at age 73.

He started as a cadet reporter at The Brisbane Telegraph in the late 1960s. In the 1970s he moved to television, to ABC‘s This Day Tonight, working in Perth and then back in Brisbane. When TDT was axed in 1978, Barton and a number of his colleagues moved across to rival QTQ9 to begin the local Brisbane current affairs show Today Tonight.

YouTube: ABCLibrarySales

Today Tonight continued until 1985, along the way winning four TV Week Logie Awards for Most Popular Program In Queensland.

He claimed that he was virtually exiled from Queensland media after he broke two controversial stories. He told TV Week in 1992: “The first story was about how (Queensland Premier Sir Joh Bjelke-Petersen) financed his farm and the second was about (QTQ9 board chairman) Sir Edward Lyons’ betting activities. And later when Lyons was sacked from the board, all of us (Today Tonight) got the axe too.”

YouTube: bashuppark

He was thrown a lifeline by Network Ten in Sydney, as executive producer on Good Morning Australia and host of Business Week. This was followed by a move to co-host Seven‘s short-lived business news program TVAM with Kay McGrath.

By the early 1990s he was working as a freelancer, including a stint as a reporter and relief host on ABC’s Landline.

He later moved to Kuala Lumpur as director of sports at the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union from 2002 to 2013.

John Barton is survived by his three sons, Sam, Fraser and Hugh Barton.

Source: Brisbane Times, Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union. The Sunday Mail / Scene On TV, 1 May 1988. TV Week, 6 December 1992.

Permanent link to this article: https://televisionau.com/2024/02/obituary-john-barton.html

On This Day — 21 February

21 February 1976: Gerard Kennedy (Tandarra)

21 February 1998: Tasma Walton with Lilikoi Olsen, Jared Daperis, Thomas Blackburn (Blue Heelers)

21 February 2004: Rebecca Cartwright and Beau Brady (Home And Away)

21 February 2009: Christie Hayes and Jessica Tovey (Home And Away)

21 February 1974: The first episode of police drama Silent Number airs on GTV9, Melbourne, a week after its airing in Sydney. The series starred Grigor Taylor, Elizabeth Alexander, Ros Spiers, Don Reid and Deryck Barnes. Silent Number was produced for the Nine Network but was in part funded by a consortium of regional stations, utilising studio facilities at regional stations WIN4, Wollongong, and NBN3, Newcastle.

21 February 1997: Garry McDonald hosts Seven‘s new celebrity game show, Ripsnorters.

21 February 1999: Nine debuts two series in the lead up to the new millennium: Ray Martin hosts Our Century, a 26-part series charting the events and people that have shaped Australia from Federation to the present day; and Tracy Grimshaw hosts Our Country, highlighting Australia’s natural countryside.

Permanent link to this article: https://televisionau.com/2024/02/on-this-day-21-february.html

Nine, Tabcorp in new Melbourne Cup deal

The Victoria Racing Club (VRC), Tabcorp and Nine Entertainment have announced a new media deal for coverage of the Melbourne Cup Carnival from 2024 to 2029.

The new deal sees Nine broadcast the Melbourne Cup for the first time since Ten first secured exclusive coverage rights from 1978. Ten held rights until 2001 and again from 2019 to 2023, with Seven from 2002 to 2018.

Nine gains the free-to-air rights after Seven and incumbent Ten both walked away from bidding last year.

As free-to-air broadcast partner, Nine will have audio-visual rights for broadcast, streaming, mobile, digital and social platforms. All four days of the Carnival will be broadcast live on Nine and streamed on 9Now.

Nine CEO, Mike Sneesby said: “The Melbourne Cup is an iconic Australian sporting event and has been part of our nation’s cultural fabric for more than 160 years. It has a rich heritage, synonymous with legendary sporting names such as Phar Lap and Makybe Diva, and Nine is honoured to be able to broadcast this world-renowned event across our platforms from 2024.”

VRC is also extending its partnership with Tabcorp, as the exclusive wagering integration partner for Nine’s broadcast and which will carry the Carnival on all Sky platforms and the TAB app. Tabcorp also has the right to on-sell coverage to wagering providers.

Tabcorp CEO, Adam Rytenskild, said: “Tabcorp’s partnership with the VRC and Nine is the most innovative in Australian sport and we can’t wait to bring our entire digital, broadcast and retail ecosystem together to grow and promote the Melbourne Cup Carnival together. This partnership builds on Tabcorp winning the 20-year Victorian exclusive wagering licence and will be a key pillar of our growth strategy. Together with our Brand and Customer transformation, this partnership gives us a terrific platform to grow in Victoria, throughout Australia and around the world as we beam the Cup to more than 60 different countries through Sky Racing.”

In the transfer of broadcast rights to Nine, VRC Chief Executive Officer Steve Rosich acknowledged Network Ten’s contribution as free-to-air broadcast partner: “The VRC acknowledges and thanks Network Ten for bringing together exceptional coverage of the Melbourne Cup Carnival since 2019. In partnership with Network Ten the VRC has expanded the range and reach of Cup Week across domestic and international audiences, and we were delighted to finish the partnership on a high, with increased viewership on Network Ten and Ten Play.”

Source: Nine For Brands, VRC, Australian Financial Review



Permanent link to this article: https://televisionau.com/2024/02/nine-tabcorp-in-new-melbourne-cup-deal.html

On This Day — 20 February

20 February 1971: Bert Newton (Australia’s New Faces) and Patti McGrath

20 February 1982: Jacki Weaver and John Waters

20 February 2010: Bernard Curry, Lincoln Lewis, Jodi Gordon, Todd Lasance (Home And Away)

20 February 1965: Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh arrives in Canberra for an Australian tour. The ABC and Nine networks present joint coverage of the Duke’s arrival and were also telecast partners for various ceremonies to follow in Canberra and Sydney over the course of the week. Both the ABC and Nine broadcasts were relayed to Melbourne via coaxial cable. ABC’s coverage was also relayed to Queensland via microwave link.

20 February 1970: The opening ceremony of the Overseas Telecommunications Commission’s (OTC) satellite receiving station in Ceduna, South Australia, marked the launch of a direct satellite link from Australia to the United Kingdom and Europe. The special broadcast, introduced by ABC newsreader James Dibble, featured a 10-minute live cross from the United Kingdom.

20 February 1991: ABC presents a 90-minute documentary, One Australia?, a study on racism and multiculturalism in Australia and asking whether cohesion in our society can be achieved while maintaining diversity.


Permanent link to this article: https://televisionau.com/2024/02/on-this-day-20-february.html

On This Day — 19 February

19 February 1972: Leonard Teale (Homicide)

19 February 1977: Grahame Bond and Rory O’Donoghue (The Off Show)

19 February 1994: Kym Wilson (Video Smash Hits)

19 February 2000: Libby Tanner (All Saints), Krista Vendy (Neighbours), Jane Allsop (Blue Heelers)

19 February 2005: Christie Hayes and Sam Atwell (Home And Away)

19 February 1979: Melbourne’s ATV0 launches its new morning show Everyday, hosted by Annette Allison and Roy Hampson. The show later becomes Good Morning Melbourne. ABC debuts its new nightly current affairs program Nationwide Nationwide running towards the ’80s [2019]

19 February 2001: Sitcom Flat Chat, starring Jean Kittson and Alexandra Davies, debuts on Nine.

19 February 2003: Sketch comedy series Comedy Inc debuts on Nine.

19 February 2006: Georgie Parker hosts Nine‘s new panel show Clever, featuring guests Bert Newton, Amanda Keller and Megan Gale. Contestants try to answer scientific questions relating to experiments.

Permanent link to this article: https://televisionau.com/2024/02/on-this-day-19-february.html

Broadcast extension, again, for Community TV

The community television sector’s access to broadcast on free-to-air television has been a cause of much instability since 2014, when the then Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull decreed that community television must exit the airwaves by the end of 2015.

The stations have been living an uncertain future ever since, as extensions to the cut-off date were granted in November 2015, December 2016, June 2017, June 2018, June 2020 and, finally, a three-year extension in June 2021.

In the meantime, three stations — TVS Sydney, 31 Digital Brisbane and WTV Perth — have vanished from the airwaves, leaving only Melbourne’s C31 and 44 Adelaide on the air and online.

The two remaining stations have been given an extension to their broadcast licences under a Bill introduced to Parliament by Communications Minister The Hon Michelle Rowland last week. However, the change comes with the caveat that the extension is granted only until any alternative use for the broadcast channels they occupy is identified:

“Community television is a vibrant part of Australia’s media landscape – adding to media diversity, providing local news and content, supporting local businesses and serving as a platform for the next generation of industry talent.

“These changes will ensure Channel 31 Melbourne and Channel 44 Adelaide can continue to provide these valuable services until there is an alternative use for the radiofrequency spectrum they occupy.

“By introducing this Bill, the Albanese Government is delivering on its election commitment to support a strong, diverse community broadcasting sector and the audiences they serve.”

The change gives the Australian Communications and Media Authority the power to declare when an alternative use for the spectrum has been identified, and to determine a specified date.

Source: The Hon Michelle Rowland MP



Permanent link to this article: https://televisionau.com/2024/02/broadcast-extension-again-for-community-tv.html

On This Day — 18 February

18 February 1970: Terry McDermott, Margaret Cruickshank, Mark Albiston (Bellbird)

18 February 1981: Don Lane and Graham Kennedy

18 February 1989: Rachel Friend and Ashley Paske (Neighbours)

18 February 1995: Isla Fisher and Daniel Amalm (Home And Away)

18 February 2006: Dancing With The Stars

18 February 1972: Bert Newton hosts the 14th annual TV Week Logie Awards at Melbourne’s Southern Cross Hotel. The Nine Network telecast was shown live to Sydney and Melbourne and for the first time to Brisbane and Adelaide — TV Week Logie Awards: 50 years ago [2022]

18 February 1979: The Sydney premiere of the Seven Network documentary series This Fabulous Century hosted by Peter Luck. The new series, including footage from Cinesound, Movietone and the National Film and Sound Archive to illustrate the history of Australia from Federation to the present day, debuts with a one-hour episode. The series debuted in Melbourne the following Sunday.

18 February 1980: Melbourne’s ATV10 screens the telemovie The Franky Doyle Story, tracing the story of the notorious Prisoner character played by Carol Burns.

18 February 1984: After over a decade on Saturday mornings, Hey Hey It’s Saturday moves to prime time and is re-named Hey Hey It’s Saturday Night.

18 February 1985: After 12 years at midday, The Mike Walsh Show makes its prime time debut. Network 0-28 is re-branded as SBS in anticipation of the network’s expansion to Brisbane, Adelaide, Gold Coast, Newcastle and Wollongong later in the year and the eventual removal of the VHF Channel 0 transmissions in Sydney and Melbourne. The re-launch also coincides with the debut of regular daytime programming on the channel — SBS Television turns 40 [2020]

18 February 1987: Don Lane returns to television with the debut of You’ve Got To Be Joking, a weekly series of practical jokes and hidden camera stunts.

18 February 2007: The debut of the first series of Australia’s Got Talent, with contestants vying for a grand final prize of $250,000. Judging the contestants are Red Symons, Dannii Minogue and Tom Burlinson.

Permanent link to this article: https://televisionau.com/2024/02/on-this-day-18-february.html