Friday, 6 April 2012

Hollywood star shines at 1962 Appeal

janerussellHollywood star Jane Russell (pictured) was the headline guest at the Royal Children’s Hospital Good Friday Appeal 50 years ago.

The 40-year-old, still looking as glamorous as she had twenty years earlier when she rose to fame as the 1940s sex symbol in the movie classic The Outlaw, was in Sydney as part of a four-week nightclub season and flew down to Melbourne to visit the Royal Children’s Hospital in the afternoon, where she was presented with a toy kangaroo and a basket of Easter eggs from two of the hospital’s patients.  She was then given a tour of the hospital and chatted to patients on her way through.

Russell then made a visit to the Appeal’s radio partner 3DB before heading to the HSV7 studios to appear in the Celebrity Hour, the lead segment of the evening session of the Appeal’s telethon, hosted by Geoff Raymond. Other special guests for the Celebrity Hour program were Spanish dancer Luisillo and actor Michael Denison, star of the British series Boyd QC and in Melbourne for the return season of stage hit My Fair Lady.

For Russell it was only a brief visit to Melbourne although she did return later in the month to film a special program for GTV9.

HSV7, Good Friday, 20 April 1962
8.30am Royal Children’s Hospital Appeal: Opening
8.45 News
9am Royal Children’s Hospital Appeal
12.30pm News
12.45 Royal Children’s Hospital Appeal – includes live coverage of Jane Russell’s arrival at Essendon Airport at 1.30pm.
4.45 Zig And Zag
5pm The Happy Show
5.45 Swallow’s Juniors
6pm Robin Hood
6.30 News
7pm The Nelsons
7.30 Royal Children’s Hospital Appeal: Celebrity Hour.  Hosted by Geoff Raymond, featuring Jane Russell, Luisillo, Michael Denison and Noel Brophy as well as Sunnyside Up stars Syd Heylen and John Gilbert.
8.30 Movie: A Kid For Two Farthings.  1956
10.30 Royal Children’s Hospital Appeal – includes Final Total
12am Close

This year’s appeal comes only six months after Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II opened the new Royal Children’s Hospital campus in Parkville, adjacent to the previous hospital site which the monarch had also opened almost fifty years earlier. 

goodfridayappeal_0004Appeal organisers this year are hopeful of breaking last year’s record total of $15,156,000.  Money raised this year will purchase a multi-million dollar state of the art scanner, and go towards ground-breaking research and medical scholarships.

The telethon, broadcast through Seven Melbourne and Prime7 in regional Victoria, starts today (Good Friday) at 9.00am and continues through until after midnight, breaking only for Seven News, Today Tonight and Home And Away.  Melbourne radio stations 3AW and Magic 1278 will also broadcast through the day from the Appeal headquarters at Melbourne’s Etihad Stadium.

Source: Seven News, Good Friday AppealTV Times, 18 April 1962.  The Age, 19 April & 21 April 1962.

UPDATE @ 12.30AM AEST 7.4.2012:  The 2012 Royal Children’s Hospital Good Friday Appeal has signed off with a record-breaking final total of $15,820,640.78.

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