Monday, December 09, 2013

Thunderbirds, Silver Strings, The Dukes, Checkmates Together National Theatre and Boys Town

Front Cover of Souvenir Programme: From Boys' Town Facebook.
47 Years Ago Today:

In the 60s when a variety show was held, either at the most popular venues like the National Theatre at Tank Road, Victoria Theatre at Stamford Road or in smaller venues like the FnN Hall at Kim Seng Road or SJAB Hall at Beach Road, the souvenir magazine was usually a simple 8 to 10 page booklet made out of typing paper.  At times it consisted of an A4 size paper folded and stapled into place to form the evening's programme.
The Early Bird Line-Up of The Thunderbirds
The inner pages were usually printed in black and white with a mildly colourful cover page done using silk-screen printing in two colours and the paper's white background (image one). Graphics could be quite attractive depending on the amateur artist's ability and committee in charge.

Personally David, Merlin and Danny Boy (Osman) were the nicest guys ever!
The rest of the pages would be filled with pictures and write-ups of our local pop stars while the centre-fold revealed the programme for the evening.  It was standard procedure.
The Surfers from album cover.
The printing would usually be done manually using a *Gestetner duplicating machine.  Such a procedure saved cost but with a little more financial backing the organisers would have the programme printed professionally by a company as the Peep Pop Show programme (image 4) shows.
A Typical Pop 60s Show.  The Best There Was, And Well Worth The Entrance Ticket.
Again the choice depended upon the organisers' financial situation and whether there were advertisements between pages. These advertisements from sponsors would certainly have covered part of the cost.

Siglap Five With Jeffridin.
The above show sponsored by Boys Town OBA could have been less expensive to produce in the 60s where bands performed because they loved the glamour and glory of being pop stars.  Some bands were also eager to help out with the charities that needed assistance.  Mostly the boys and girls who participated were doing the gigs for fun and enjoyment while earning an honorarium.

Checkmates - Without Doubt In The Top Five Category.
This particular charity event showcased the best of the guitar groups from the 60s. It could have had attracted a large audience at the National Theatre seeing that it was held on 9th December 1966, exactly 47 years ago since it was a time of year-end festivities like Christmas and New Year. It was also the school holiday season.  Boys Town had organised successful shows like this one to help raise funds.

From Velvetones To Firebyrds. Recorded too.
The bands featured that night need no introduction. Except for one or two, the line-up of artistes were the best from our local 60s stable. They were well-represented with an array of top singers and guitar personalities from Singapore. Even bands from the UK were participating and included singers like Brian Neale, Leroy Lindsay and Winston Walters. Terry Marsden compered the show.
The National Theatre Singapore (1963-1986).
If you had attended this particular show 47 years ago please write in because it would be exciting to have you bring back memories that happened nearly half a century ago. You don't have to give your name. Would really be great cause I know hundreds of people would have been involved in planning and executing such a large happening.

*A Manual Office Duplicating Machine
Images: From Boys' Town Facebook and Bloggers' Collection.



Hi Mr Lim!

Definitely glad to see more pictures on your blog! :) Pleasure to read, as always.


anonymous said...

Where is Jenny Teo now? Was an ardent fan of hers during her SBC radio 1 stint.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Latest comments forwarded from other postings.

Thank you. Glad you like the extra pictures.

Jenny Teo has devoted her life to the Christian faith and sings for the church in the US. I hope to put up another posting of her soon.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

In the 1960s and early 1970s, many international pop stars have performed at the theatre, included the following: The Louis Armstrong Jazz Band, The Duke Ellington Orchestra, Woody Herman and his Orchestra, Johnny Mathis, Shirley Bassey, The Bee Gees
The Hollies, The Walker Brothers, The Yardbirds, Herman's Hermits, Sheena Easton.

Many of our top local bands have performed at the Theatre too.

FL said...

I attended our local pop concert at the former National Theatre during my teenage years ! The show was held in the evening and packed then, with local talented pop groups and singers. I wish they had not demolished the main structure with 5 pointers and also, the water fountain then since the land is not required for any development till today. The structures could have been preserved for our younger generations.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Dear FL,
Thanks for your insight on the National Theatre's structure which many readers have not mentioned. It was truly unique bearing the fact that it resembled a building that had an Eastern touch to it with, as you mentioned, its 5 pointer facade. Fountains were the order of the day in the 60s and were built everywhere. Remember the large garden clocks?

You have contributed much to this blog so my sincere thanks again.