Christmas Night with the Stars
Christmas Night with the Stars was a television show broadcast each Christmas night by the BBC from 1958 to 1972 (with the exception of 1961, 1965 and 1966). The show was hosted each year by a leading star of BBC TV and featured specially made short seasonal editions (typically about 10 minutes long) of the previous year's most popular BBC sitcoms and light entertainment programs. Most of the variety segments no longer exist in accordance with the BBC's policy of wiping at the time, prevalent into the late 1970s.
ITV countered with its own annual Christmas variety show (All Star Comedy Carnival) from 1969 to 1973, while the BBC itself resurrected the format in 1982 with a special titled The Funny Side of Christmas.
Some featured television programmes
- All Gas and Gaiters
- Bachelor Father
- Beggar my Neighbour
- Dad's Army
- Dixon of Dock Green
- Faces of Jim
- Hugh and I
- The Likely Lads
- The Liver Birds
- Marriage Lines
- Not in Front of the Children
- Oh, Brother!
- Steptoe and Son
- Sykes and A...
- The Rag Trade
- Till Death Us Do Part
- The Two Ronnies
- 1958. David Nixon introduced contributions from Charlie Drake, Dixon of Dock Green, Jimmy Edwards and Tony Hancock.
- 1962. Eamonn Andrews introduced contributions from the casts of the Billy Cotton Band Show, The Black and White Minstrels, Dixon of Dock Green, Steptoe and Son, The Rag Trade and The White Heather Club.
- 1963. Eamonn Andrews introduced contributions from Stanley Baxter, Michael Bentine, The Black and White Minstrels, Marriage Lines featuring Richard Briers and Prunella Scales, Russ Conway, Billy Cotton, the cast of Dixon of Dock Green, Dick Emery, Kenneth McKellar, Nina & Frederik, Terry Scott and Hugh Lloyd and Andy Stewart, with the Harry Rabinowitz orchestra.
- 1964. Jack Warner introduced The Barron Knights, The Black and White Minstrels, Roy Castle, Billy Cotton, Dick Emery, Benny Hill, Kathy Kirby, The Likely Lads with Rodney Bewes and James Bolam, Marriage Lines (as 1963), Meet the Wife with Freddie Frinton and Thora Hird, Terry Scott and Hugh Lloyd and Andy Stewart, with the Harry Rabinowitz orchestra.
- 1967. Rolf Harris introduced Cilla Black, Val Doonican, Billy Cotton, Roy Hudd, Lulu, David Nixon, Beryl Reid, Sandie Shaw, Kenneth Williams and Harry Worth with the casts of Beggar My Neighbour, Steptoe and Son and Till Death Us Do Part with the Alyn Ainsworth orchestra.
- 1968. Eric Morecambe and Ernie Wise introduced Louis Armstrong, Petula Clark, Rolf Harris, Jimmy Logan, Lulu, Kenneth McKellar, Nana Mouskouri, Cliff Richard, The Seekers and The Young Generation with excerpts from Ray Alan’s Ice Cabaret, Marty Feldman, Oh Brother, Not in Front of the Children, Dads Army and Harry Worth, with the Alyn Ainsworth orchestra.
- 1994. Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie hosted the show. Performers included Sandie Shaw, Reeves and Mortimer, The Fast Show, Ronnie Corbett, Alan Partridge, Rab C Nesbitt, Felix Dexter and Alexei Sayle.