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1970s BBC English Regions Drama Brian Parker David Rose Directors Play For Today Second City Firsts

Brian Parker (1929-2020)

Brian Parker, who died on 8 December 2020, had a long and eclectic career in television, initially as an actor and then as director of a wide variety of television drama, including popular series such as the BBC’s Softly Softly (from 1966-71) and The Troubleshooters (1966-68), YorkshireTelevision’s Hadleigh (1969-71), Granada Television’s Crown Court (1973-77) and […]

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1970s 1980s BBC drama BBC English Regions Drama Play For Today

My Ten Plays for Today: Lez Cooke

This is the latest in a series of posts in which we publish the ‘top ten’ or ‘top five’ Plays for Today identified by  a range of writers, researchers and media professionals. The brief was that such lists should not necessarily consist of what were considered to be the ‘best’ Plays for Today but could […]

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1970s Actors Barry Hanson BBC English Regions Drama Brian Parker David Halliwell David Rose Joyce Hawkins Play For Today Regional Drama

Play for Today: Steps Back

Written by David Halliwell, directed by Brian Parker and produced by David Rose. Broadcast on BBC1 at 9.25pm on Monday 14 May 1973 Steps Back was the second Play for Today by David Halliwell, broadcast six months after Triple Exposure (6 November 1972), his only other Play for Today. Halliwell was, and probably still is, […]

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1970s 1980s BBC BBC drama BBC English Regions Drama BBC Pebble Mill Black actors Black TV Writers Directors Gay drama John Hill Lesbian drama Northern Ireland Play For Today Radio Times Regional Drama Scotland Writers

Play for Today at 50

Along with Armchair Theatre and The Wednesday Play, Play for Today constitutes one of the most important series of British television drama. Beginning on BBC1 on Thursday 15 October 1970, it continued until 1984, running to over 300 individual plays and regularly commanding audiences of several millions. Launched as a successor to The Wednesday Play […]

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Barry Reckord BBC English Regions Drama Events Forgotten Black TV Drama Granada Television Second City Firsts

Forgotten Black TV Drama at BFI Southbank: You in Your Small Corner (1962) + Club Havana (1975)

The third screening in our season of Forgotten Black TV Drama at BFI Southbank, on Monday 11 February at 6.00pm, is a double bill of plays written by Barry Reckord who came to Britain from Jamaica in 1950 to study at Cambridge University and wrote plays for the theatre and television from the early 50s […]

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1970s BBC BBC English Regions Drama BBC MIdland BFI Billy Smart Drama She Wrote Events Lesbian drama Play For Today Second City Firsts Writers

‘Drama She Wrote’ at BFI Southbank: ‘Play for Today: The Other Woman’ (BBC 1976) & ‘Second City Firsts: Shall I See You Now’ (BBC 1978)

Our ‘Drama She Wrote’ season at BFI Southbank concludes on Monday with an 8.40 screening of two 1970s plays from BBC Birmingham. The BBC Birmingham connection has been an unexpected occurence as, despite being catalogued, our billed second play (Jill Laurimore’s 1973 ATV drama Family Tree) turned out not to survive in the ITV archive! The […]

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1970s Actors BBC English Regions Drama BBC Pebble Mill Directors Events Interviews Producers Regional Drama Second City Firsts

Second City Firsts – Panel Discussion

Second City Firsts (BBC2, 1973-78) Panel Discussion with Philip Jackson (PJ), Tara Prem (TP), Philip Saville (PS) and Jack Shepherd (JS) chaired by Lez Cooke (LC) Television Drama: The Forgotten, the Lost and the Neglected Conference Royal Holloway, University of London 23 April 2015 LC: Welcome to this session on Second City Firsts (BBC2, 1973-78). […]

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BBC BBC drama BBC English Regions Drama David Rose Lez Cooke Producers Regional Drama

Michael Wearing (1939-2017)

Michael Wearing, who died on 5 May 2017, was one of the talented people David Rose brought into television in the 1970s. Following the recent deaths of Barry Hanson, also recruited by Rose, Philip Saville, with whom Wearing worked on Boys from the Blackstuff, Rose himself in January and Christopher Morahan in April, the last few months […]

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1950s 1960s 1970s BBC BBC drama BBC English Regions Drama Conferences Directors Events Granada Television ITV John Osborne Regional Drama Uncategorized Writers

Reflections on ‘TV’s Forgotten Dramas’ season and conference, BFI Southbank, 2017

By Lez Cooke, John Hill and Billy Smart Programming a season of ‘Television’s Forgotten Dramas’, and encouraging a BFI Southbank audience to come and see them,  presented both challenges and opportunities. The major challenge involved in promoting forgotten dramas is that, by their nature, they are not well-known and titles on their own do not […]

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BBC BBC English Regions Drama BBC Pebble Mill David Rose Producers Regional Drama Second City Firsts

David Rose (1924-2017)

I first met David Rose, who died on 26 January 2017 at the age of 92, at a conference celebrating the work of John McGrath, at Royal Holloway, University of London in April 2002. David had, of course, worked with John McGrath and Troy Kennedy Martin, who was also at the conference, on Z Cars […]