EntertainmentMagazineTotnes Town

Are you sitting comfortably? Then we’ll begin.

This is London calling…

This one-man show informs, educates but above all entertains about the birth of the BBC.
Coming to Devon for the very first time and raising money for Red Nose Day, enjoy tales, clips and re-enactments of Aunte Beeb’s earliest landmark moments: the first BBC broadcast, the first children’s, drama, sports commentary and so much more –

Researched, writen and performed by Britsh Comedy Award-winning writer (Miranda, Not Going Out) and comedian Paul Kerensa.

With no recordings from the 1920s, we’ll recreate key moments, inc. the first drama The Truth About Father Christmas (recently rediscovered by Paul at the British Library for the first time in nearly a century) and the first politcal debate (sparking the BBC’s first controversy, foreshadowing the issues for today’s BBC).

The Future of the institution

In this age of doubt over the BBC’s future, we’ll seek to understand the present by looking at the past – answering questons like: Why the half-hour programme length? How did the first allegaton of BBC bias pre-date the BBC? How was the BBC effectvely pirate at first, unlicensed for the first two months?

Paul Kerensa has writen for TV shows including Not Going Out, Miranda and Top Gear and radio shows such as. The Now Show, The News Quiz and Dead Ringers. He’s a regular on BBC Radio 2 Breakfast Show’s ‘Pause For Thought.’

Part 1, 1919-22: The build-up to the BBC… Paul plays two feuding real-life pioneers: the wild first regular broadcaster Peter Eckersley and the frustrated first voice of the BBC Arthur Burrows, both with different ideas of what radio could be. Also Nellie Melba, drunken improvised opera, and the launch night.

Part 2, 1922-23: Paul (as himself) guides us through the Beeb’s first year: hear the first song and first comedian, relive the influential first outside broadcast and the bawdy launch of Savoy Hill.

This show will be at St John’s Church, Bridgetown, Totnes at 7.30pm on Saturday 9 March 2024.
Tickets: £10 (12-17 year-olds: £8) from HERE.

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