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Junior Showtime

1 9 6 9 – 1 9 7 4 (UK)
30 minute episodes

This popular ITV afternoon variety series for kids was produced by Yorkshire Television at the City Varieties in Leeds (also the home of The Good Old Days).

The 30-minute show – featuring young performers between the age of 12 and 15 years old – was originally presented by Bobby Bennett (himself a young discovery from Opportunity Knocks!), although guest hosts such as Joe Brown, Les Dawson, Gerry Marsden and Ken Dodd were added later. Pauline Quirke also became a regular.

In between acts, Fred Barker, Kitty the Theatre Cat and “Mr Albert” the Stage Manager brought some light-hearted interruptions to the proceedings.

It seemed that Junior Showtime had a morbid fascination with the Poole Family. There were about ten of them to start with and their numbers seemed to increase week by week until they occupied the entire studio. Their ‘star’ was the youngest member, Glyn, who had an extremely minor hit in 1973 with Milly Molly Mandy. The title says it all.

The Junior Showtime singers and dancers were “advised” by choreographer Jean Pearce. The Executive Producer was Jess Yates of Stars On Sunday infamy.

Bobby Bennett
Ricky Kirwin
Louise Barton

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