If You Give a Dance, You Gotta Pay the Band

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If You Give a Dance, You Gotta Pay the Band
Written byStanley L. Gray
Directed byFred Coe
StarringDonna M. Bryan
James Broderick
Georgia Burke
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
ProducersDavid Susskind
Pamela Susskind (associate producer)
CinematographyMike Liberman
Jake Ostroff
EditorArline Garson
Running time73 minutes
Picture formatColor
Audio formatMono
Original releaseDecember 19, 1972 (1972-12-19)

If You Give a Dance You Gotta Pay the Band is a 1972 American TV movie. It was the first program shown under the umbrella ABC Theater.[1][2]

The production (at the time referred to as a "dramatic special" or "teleplay" rather than a made-for-TV movie) was the first screen credit for Laurence Fishburne and led to him getting a role later on in the soap opera One Life to Live.[3][4][5]

The teleplay first aired on ABC at 8:30pm ET on Tuesday, December 19, 1972[3] and was rerun on Wednesday, June 6, 1973 at 9:00pm ET.[5] In TV listings of the era, the title was generally given as If You Give a Dance You Gotta Pay the Band without a comma.


The story of ghetto boy and girl trying to raise money for the girl to visit her father in prison. It was shot on videotape in November 1972.[6]


  1. ^ TV VIEW; THE NETWORKS HAVEN'T QUITE FORSAKEN QUALITY DRAMA: [REVIEW] O'Connor, John J. New York Times, Late Edition (East Coast); New York, N.Y. [New York, N.Y]03 Feb 1985: A.25.
  2. ^ TV: Flirtations With Reality . . . in Various Aspects: ' Stereotypes' Draw a Protest by Viewers A Slice-of-Life Drama Rings True in Details By JOHN J. O'CONNOR. New York Times ]27 Dec 1972: 79.
  3. ^ a b "Tuesday [television listings]". The Bryan Times. Bryan, Ohio. 1972-12-19. Retrieved 2021-12-27. 90-minute dramatic special
  4. ^ Monica Haynes (2008-08-19). "DeGeneres, de Rossi wed; Barr goes ballistic; the story of Stanley Gray". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved 2021-12-27. Quick, what was Laurence Fishburne's first movie gig? If you said it was a 1972 television film called "If Give a Dance You Gotta Pay the Band," you're right.
  5. ^ a b "Larry Fishburne, 11, Expands To ABC Teleplay". Jet. Vol. XLIV, no. 11. 1973-06-07. p. 66.
  6. ^ SET FIRST PLAY FOR NEW 'ABC THEATRE' Variety; Los Angeles Vol. 268, Iss. 11, (Oct 25, 1972): 33.

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