Sunday, 15 April 2012

TV Week Logie Awards: 50 years ago

tommyhanlonjnrTommy Hanlon Jnr (pictured, right), the American-born host of the daytime game show It Could Be You, and entertainer Lorrae Desmond were the winners of the Gold Logies at the 4th annual TV Week Logie Awards, held at Melbourne’s Chevron Hotel on Saturday, 31 March 1962.

It was the first time that the Gold Logie was awarded to both a male and female personality – a custom that would continue on and off for the Logies until the late 1970s – hence making Desmond (pictured, below) the first female to win the coveted award.  Her award was also the first Gold Logie to be won by an ABC personality.

lorraedesmond_0001Hanlon was present at the Chevron to accept his Gold Logie, but Desmond – whose self-titled variety show was a hit for ABC – was in Hollywood at the time of the presentation but in her written acceptance to TV Week, she said it was the “nicest thing” that had ever happened to her:

“Quite honestly I have never been so surprised and delighted.  With every performer, I’m sure the most important thing in the world is to be liked by your own people.  Therefore, any measure of success in your own country is much more warming and rewarding than achievement overseas.  So from the bottom of my heart, thank you to the readers, judges and people concerned who gave me this award.”

Interstate guests were flown to Melbourne’s Essendon Airport via airline TAA’s ‘Operation Starlift’.  Upon arrival in Melbourne, the guests travelled via a fleet of open-roof cars, the procession guided by a police escort as it made its way through Melbourne to the Chevron.

bobdyer_0002The event was hosted by Gerald Lyons with 1961 Gold Logie winner Bob Dyer (pictured) handing out the statuettes.  The presentation had a 30-minute live broadcast on ABV2 in Melbourne with delayed telecasts in other states. 

The presentation also marked the first ever State-based Logies to be awarded to Western Australian and Tasmanian personalities – with ABC hostesses Diana Ward and Wendy Ellis being voted as most popular in those States respectively.

logies_1962

National awards:

Gold Logie – TV Man Of The Year: Tommy Hanlon Jnr (It Could Be You)
Gold Logie – TV Girl Of The Year: Lorrae Desmond (The Lorrae Desmond Show)

bobbylimbdawnlakeBest Variety Show: Revue ‘61
Best Compere: Bob Dyer
Best Drama Series: Consider Your Verdict
Best Youth Entertainment: Bandstand
Best Female Singer: Patsy Ann Noble
Best Male Singer: Col Joye
Best Comedian: Bobby Limb
Best Documentary Series: Anzac
Best News Feature Program: Four Corners
Best Commercial: Vacuum Oil Company's Mobil Oil

State-based awards:

dianawardNSW: Digby Wolfe, Dawn Lake, The Johnny O’Keefe Show
VIC: Graham Kennedy, Toni Lamond, Sunnyside Up
QLD: Brian Tait, Jill Edwards, Theatre Royal
SA: Kevin Crease, Joan Disher, On The Sunnyside
WA: Diana Ward (pictured)
TAS: Wendy Ellis

logies_1962_0001

Pictured above – Top Row: George Wallace (Theatre Royal), Bob Dyer (Pick A Box), Bob Raymond (producer, Four Corners), Graham Kennedy (In Melbourne Tonight).  Middle Row: Brian Henderson (Bandstand), Peter Macfarlane (producer, Revue ‘61), Bobby Limb (The Mobil-Limb Show), Diana Ward (ABW2, Perth), Alf Spargo (producer, Sunnyside Up).  Bottom Row: Wendy Ellis (ABT2, Hobart), Patsy Ann Noble, Dawn Lake (The Mobil-Limb Show)

logies_1962_0002

Top Row: Len Reason (Paton Advertising), Blair Schwartz (On The Sunnyside), Kevin Crease, Col Joye.  Middle Row: Brian Tait, Bill Collins (Sunnyside Up), Dorothy Crawford (producer, Consider Your Verdict), Kevin Ryder (producer, The Johnny O’Keefe Show), Darrell Miley (Federal Entertainment Director, ABC, on behalf of Lorrae Desmond).  Bottom Row: Tommy Hanlon Jnr, Toni Lamond, Jill Edwards, Joan Disher.

Source: TV Week, 14 April 1962.  TV Times, 28 March 1962.  Sydney Morning Herald, 1 April 1962.  The Age, 2 April 1962.  Australian Television Information Archive.

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