Dinah Shore     Ed Sullivan     Elvis Presley     Steve Allen Show     Don Knox     Tom Posten     Louie Nye     Bill Dana     Playhouse 90     Rod Sterling     Ampex     The Price Is Right     Bill Cullen     Don Prado     Queen for a Day     Jack Bailey

1956 Fifties

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1950s Television

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New Series 1956


Dinah Shore 1956The Dinah Shore Chevy Show (1956-1963) - Dinah Shore sang her way into millions of living rooms in her weekly one hour musical variety show. Brought to you by Chevrolet and the song "See the USA in your Chevrolet..." Dinah Shore



steve allen show 1956The Steve Allen Show (1956–1960) - After handing over The Tonight Show to Jack Paar Steve Allen took his zany brand of humor to a prime time comedy variety hour. With supporting cast of comedians Don Knox, Tom Posten, Louie Nye and Bill Dana in the famous Man of the Street interviews. The Steve Allen Show.


playhouse 90 1956Playhouse 90 (1956–1961) - The most respected of the live drama anthologies with an unusual 90 minute format. Though in the second season it moved to video tape. A starting point for many including Rod Sterling, Robert Redford, John Frankenheimer and Sidney Lumet. Playhouse 90.,


price is right 1956


The Price Is Right (1956–1965) - The first 10 year run hosted by Bill Cullen and announced by Don Prado was far more subdued than the second run that ran from 1972 to the present. Four contestants sat calmly behind a long studio desk and bid on products. Price is Right.



queen for a day 1956Queen for a Day (1956–1964) - Hosted by Jack Bailey who asked the live audience "Would YOU like to be Queen for a day?" Good works contestants were brought on stage, their stories told and then a winner was decided by an audience applause meter. Queen for a Day

The Gale Storm Show (1956–1960)

My Friend Flicka (1956–1958)
As the World Turns (1956–present)
The Edge of Night (1956–1984)
The Eddy Arnold Show on ABC
The Adventures of Jim Bowie (1956–1958)


Series End 1956


Cisco Kid (1950–1956).
The Honeymooners (1955–1956).
Jungle Jim (1955–1956) starring Johnny Weissmuller


Most Watched 1956 -1957


1. I Love Lucy     
2. The Ed Sullivan Show
3. General Electric Theatre
4. The $64,000 Question
5. December Bride
6. Alfred Hitchcock Presents
7. I've Got a Secret
8. Gunsmoke
9. The Perry Como Show
10. The Jack Benny Show
11. Dragnet
12. Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts
13. The Millionaire
14. Disneyland
15. The Red Skelton Show
16. The Lineup
17. You Bet Your Life
18. The Life & Legend of Wyatt Earp
19. The Ford Show
20. The Adventures of Robin Hood



Television News 1956



Elvis on Ed Sullivan 1955Elvis Presley appears on the Ed Sullivan Show and Rock and Roll goes mainstream. This very sanitized version of Don't Be Cruel is indicative of the times. To be fair to Elvis Presley, below is a video of his very first television appearance and a much better example of what he was doing live in concert at the time. Elvis on Ed Sullivan


ampex video recorder 1956


The first video recording machine is produced by Ampex. It is used to televise Douglas Edwards and the News on CBS in New York and played back three hours later on the West Coast. Ampex Tape changes Television.


The Enmmy's 1956 - 1957


Best Series, Half Hour or Less: Phil Silvers Show
Best Series, One Hour or More:   Caesar's Hour
Best Continuing Performance By an Actor in a Dramatic Series: Robert Young, Father Knows Best
Best Continuing Performance By an Actress in a Dramatic Series: Loretta Young, Loretta Young Show
Best Supporting Performance By an Actor: Carl Reiner, Caesar's Hour
Best Supporting Performance By an Actress: Pat Carroll, Caesar's Hour
Best Direction, Half Hour or Less: Sheldon Leonard, Danny Thomas Show
Best Direction, One Hour or More: Ralph Nelson, Playhouse 90: Requiem for a Heavyweight
Best Male Personality, Continuing Performance:           Perry Como
Best Female Personality, Continuing Performance: Dinah Shore
Best New Program Series: Playhouse 90 (CBS)
Best Single Program of the Year: Playhouse 90 Requiem for a Heavyweight
Best Single Performance By an Actor: Jack Palance, Playhouse 90: Requiem for a Heavyweight
Best Single Performance By an Actress: Claire Trevor, Producers' Showcase: Dodsworth
Best Continuing Performance By a Comedian in a Series: Sid Caesar, Caesar's Hour
Best Continuing Performance By a Comedienne in a Series: Nanette Fabray, Caesar's Hour
Best Public Service Series: See It Now (CBS)
Best News Commentator: Edward R. Murrow


TV Guide Schedule 1956




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1961 History
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The Year That Was
A retro, nostalgic multimedia journey through the years
Fiftes - Ticky Tacky - 1950s
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