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Billy Smart

This category contains 32 posts

The BBC Television Audience Research Reports and BBC Scotland Drama, 1964-82: Recorded Opinions and Invisible Expectations

Between the 1950s and the 1980s, the BBC’s internal Audience Research Unit compiled up to 700 television Audience Research reports per year, attempting to cover the complete spectrum of BBC TV programming. What I’m going to do today is consider the value of this material, in relation to my own work on the development of … Continue reading

‘Forgotten Television Dramas 2’ at BFI Southbank: ‘Play of the Month: Loyalties’ (BBC 1976)

Our second ‘Forgotten Television Dramas’ season concludes at 3.15 on Sunday afternoon with a screening of John Galsworthy’s ‘Loyalties’, unseen since 1976. The screening will be introduced by actor Edward Fox. Along with his many film and theatre credits over the last fifty years, two of Edward’s television appearances made soon after Loyalties demonstrate his … Continue reading

‘Forgotten Television Dramas 2’ at BFI Southbank: ‘Sunday Night Theatre: The Hotel in Amsterdam’ (ATV/ ITV, 1971)

  Our second ‘Forgotten Television Dramas’ season launches at 6.00 this evening with a screening of John Osborne’s ‘The Hotel in Amsterdam’, unseen since 1971. A full article about this play (and a later 2004 BBC production) can be found on our blog here. The screening will be followed by a discussion with the play’s … Continue reading

‘Forgotten Dramas 2: Rediscovering British Television’s Neglected Plays’ Season at BFI Southbank: February 2017

We are pleased to be able to announce details of the second ‘Forgotten Dramas: Rediscovering British Television’s Neglected Plays’ season, held at BFI Southbank this February, curated by Lez Cooke, John Hill and Billy Smart as a part of the AHRC-funded ‘History of Forgotten Television Drama in the UK’ project at Royal Holloway College, University … Continue reading

Finding a fragment of a lost television drama: The last seven minutes of ‘Play of the Month: The Magistrate’ (BBC1 20 December 1972)

Researching old television drama is often an archaeological process. When programmes don’t survive, a trained historian and theorist can sometimes pick up (and hopefully convey) some idea of what they might have been like through secondary sources.

About the Project

This is the official blog of the ‘History of Forgotten Television Drama in the UK’ project, Royal Holloway College, University of London. This 3-year AHRC-funded project will explore why many television dramas made in the regions and nations of the UK between 1946 and 1982 have been ‘forgotten’ while others have been elevated to the … Continue reading

Dramatic Spaces: The Imaginative World of the TV Studio (Dead of Night: The Exorcism, BBC 1972)

Don’t have nightmares. We decided to open our season – ‘Dramatic Spaces: The Imaginative World of the TV Studio’ – with The Exorcism (BBC2, 5 November 1972) for two reasons.

Glance, gesture and inference in Hunters Walk (ITV/ATV 1973-76): Acting for multi-camera popular drama in the 1970s

Today’s post considers the specific nature of performance in multi-camera studio television drama of the 1970s, through textual analysis and production context of Hunters Walk (ITV/ATV 1973-76), a now-forgotten ITV police series that was popular in its day.

Two Edwardian dramas 2: ‘Play of the Month: Waste’ (BBC1, 4 December 1977)

Don Taylor‘s production of Harley Granville Barker’s 1907[1] play Waste approaches space and performance through different directorial techniques to Rudolph Cartier, further demonstrating the variety of visual methods which ‘Edwardian’ dramas could be realized in the television studio.

Two Edwardian dramas 1: ‘Play of the Month: An Ideal Husband’ (BBC1, 11 May 1969)

Edwardian drama on television Between 1967 and 1985 (the period when the BBC regularly transmitted adaptations of classic theatrical plays in mainstream slots) 120 television adaptations of stage plays were transmitted by the BBC as either Plays of the Month, other similar series,[1] or as one-off productions broadcast in the Play of the Month slot.

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