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Mainly Millicent (ITV Variety, Millicent Martin, Peter Gordeno)

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Millicent Martin moves centre stage in this variety entertainment. The singer/actress had achieved fame on the satire based That Was The Week That Was.

The series itself was the usual mix of music, topical sketches etc. The first two seasons were known as Mainly Millicent and the final season was known as simply Millicent.

Regulars on the series were Peter Gordeno, The Jack Parnell Orchestra; Dancers Raymond Dalziel, Fred Evans, Neil Fitzwilliam, Norman Furber, Ian Garry, David Moffat, Fred Peters, Ian Kaye, David Kerr, Geoffrey L’Cise, Vince Logan, Audrey Bayley, Hedy Lowe, Judie Mant, Paula Perrine, Keith Galloway, Johnny Greenland, Roy Gunson and David Hepburn.

Meanwhile guests included the likes of Roy Castle, Kenneth Cope, The Beverley Twins, Ron Moody, Roger Moore, Patrick Wymark, Jack Douglas, Willie Rushton, Bernard Cribbins, Kenny Lynch, Bill Frazer, Cleo Laine, Lance Percival, Dickie Henderson and Henry McGee.

The first episode of season 2 was chosen by ATV as their official entry for the 1965 Golden Rose of Montreaux (which took place from 29 April – 3 May of that year). The winner that year was Finland’s medieval comedy Cold Old Days.

The show was also popular enough to make it into the TAM top twenty ratings with over 5 million homes tuning into the first season and giving the show a position at number 14. Coronation Street was topping the ratings every week at this time with around 8 million homes tuning in.

Susan Kay in The Stage of Thursday 18 June 1964 reviewed the first episode noting that: The first of this much publicized new series got off to a good bright start last Friday and Millicent Martin came right up to our expectations spreading her wings in this lively show. Her personality became more rounded than it was allowed to be in TW3. and she made good use of the freedom given her in the creation of a programme of the music, dancing and comedy of her taste.

On the 5 October 1966 (only a few months after this series finished) Martin starred in a one off special, also for ATV, called Millicent and Roy. In this she was partnered with song and dance man Roy Castle.

Choreography: Paddy Stone / Musical Director: Peter Knight (Season 3) / Producer and Director: Francis Essex (Seasons 1 and 2), Jon Scoffield (Season 3)

UK / ITV – ATV / 18×25 minute episodes / Broadcast 12 June 1964 – 29 June 1966