Take It From The Top (ITV 1965, John Fernald)

Interesting concept for a series, Take It From The Top, shown late on Monday evenings, offered an insight into the acting life especially the rehearsals that allow the actors time to bring the characters to life.

John Fernald presented and the series went behind the scenes on productions such as Treasure Island (starring Donald Wolfit as Long John Silver), Leo McKern in Robert Bolt’s The Thwarting of Baron Bolligrew and John Arden’s Serjeant Musgrave’s Dance.

The shows also featured a few key scenes performed from the plays too.

RELATED:   Love Island Tonight Tuesday 9 July on ITV2 and ITVX

The series was not fully networked across the ITV regions.

production details
UK / ITV – Rediffusion / 6×25 minute episodes / Broadcast 6 December 1965 – 17 January 1966

Producer: Geoffrey Hughes

Presented by John Fernald

1. THE THWARTING OF BARON BOLLIGREW (6 Dec 65) – Play by Robert Bolt, production by Trevor Nunn. Cast included Leo McKern and Nicholas Selby.
2. THE TROJAN WOMEN (13 Dec 65) – Play by Euripides, production by Robert Saragas.
3. TREASURE ISLAND (20 Dec 65) – Play by Bernard Miles (from Stevenson), production by Sally Miles. Cast included Donald Wolfit and Roy Boyd.
4. SERJEANT MUSGRAVE’S DANCE (3 Jan 66) – Play by John Arden, production by Jane Howell. Cast included John Castle, Iain Cuthbertson and Ronald Pickup.
5. THE FIRE RAISERS (10 Jan 65) – Play by Max Frisch, production by Robert David Macdonald.
6. THE BIRD-WATCHER (17 Jan 66) – Play by Georges Feydeau, production by Richard Cottrell. Cast included Michael Bates and Prunella Scales.

Alastair James is the editor in chief for Memorable TV. He has been involved in media since his university days. Alastair is passionate about television, and some of his favourite shows include Line of Duty, Luther and Traitors. He is always on the lookout for hot new shows, and is always keen to share his knowledge with others.