Texaco Star Theater, January 1953

With guest stars Gertrude Berg of the popular Molly Goldberg TV series and The Andrews Sisters.

This video might seem low quality by today's standards, but in the early days of TV it was very common to get poor reception if you lived 40 or more miles from the transmitting station.

This is "Uncle Miltie" when he was Mr. Television. He was the number one personality in America when this show aired. He is at his best here, singing and dancing and doing his comedy with high energy throughout the one hour live broadcast. A small bit of the show seems to have been cut out, probably a commercial, just before Milton appears dressed for the wedding scene. The opening number with the chorus and Milton Berle is like watching a Broadway production. They did this sort of thing every week. It was a great show.

Watch for several mistakes here. One is early in the broadcast when "Molly" gets lost as she does her lines while watching Milton on TV. The young girl actress with her gets her back on track. Mistakes were common during the live TV era.

The link below will take you to my website for actors and entertainers. The site also has information about Hollywood. The site is called My Hollywood Star. It is a free site.

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I have no connection with Texaco or the producers or actors of this show.

Texaco Star Theater has long been in the public domain. This video of the show is available at The Internet Archive and here. Texaco Star Theater was a wonderful program of the Golden Era of US entertainment history. It started as a radio program starring Ed Wynn. Later the star was Fred Allen. When it moved to television in June of 1948, the first host was Milton Berle. Milton was an unknown, more or less, at the time of that broadcast. He had starred on his own radio program and had been a featured performer on the shows of others. But this was television.

Television was made for Milton Berle and Milton was made for television. After the first show the producers dropped the original idea of having a different host each week. Milton was a smash. The show was the biggest thing on TV for five or more years. The press hated it. The people loved it. More than 80% of all TV sets in the US that were being watched on Tuesday nights were tuned to The Texaco Star Theater. No other TV show has come close to that record.

Milton was a known radio performer, but he did not become a huge star until he was seen on the small screen in 1948.

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The link below takes you to my site for fans of horror and sci-fi movies and TV shows. The site is called Hollywood Screams.