The Beat Room

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The Beat Room
Directed by James Moir
Presented by Pat Campbell
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 29
Production
Producer(s) Barry Langford
Production company(s) BBC
Release
Original network BBC Two
Original release 6 July 1964 – 29 January 1965

The Beat Room was a British television series presenting beat, rhythm and blues and other pop music, shown on BBC2 in 1964-65.

Barry Langford, producer

Production[edit]

The series was produced by Barry Langford and directed by James Moir. Acts, introduced by an off-screen presenter, Pat Campbell, performed live before an audience. The resident house band was initially Wayne Gibson and the Dynamic Sounds, but was replaced by Peter and the Headlines mid-run. The show also featured a sextet of female performance dancers, the Beat Girls.[1] created especially for the show. In all, 29 programmes were made.[2]

The first show, broadcast on Monday 6 July 1964 at 6.35 p.m., featured The Animals, Lulu & the Luvvers, and Millie Small.[3] The show was broadcast on Mondays, with Saturday repeats during the middle of the run. The final show was shown on 29 January 1965.

There was a 75-minute New Year's Eve special in 1964, Beat in the New.[4]

Tapes of all but one of the programmes were later destroyed. The only remaining programme (originally broadcast on 5 October 1964)[5] held by the BBC featured Tom Jones, Julie Rogers, The Kinks, John Lee Hooker, and The Syndicats. This was repeated on BBC4 in 2007.[3]

the following episode listing is based on Radio Times information [3]

Episode Date Sat Repeat Notes
1 6-JUL-64 N First edition, Wayne Gibson resident group, programmes 25 minutes long
2 13-JUL-64 N
3 20-JUL-64 N
4 27-JUL-64 N
5 3-AUG-64 N
6 10-AUG-64 N
7 17-AUG-64 N
8 24-AUG-64 N
9 31-AUG-64 N
10 7-SEP-64 N
11 14-SEP-64 Y Lengthened to 30 minutes from this edition on
12 21-SEP-64 Y
13 28-SEP-64 Y
14 5-OCT-64 Y Surviving episode
15 12-OCT-64 Y
16 19-OCT-64 Y Named 'Beat Extra'
17 26-OCT-64 Y
18 2-NOV-64 Y Switch to Peter and the Headlines as resident group
19 9-NOV-64 Y
20 16-NOV-64 Y
21 23-NOV-64 Y
22 30-NOV-64 Y
23 7-DEC-64 Y
24 14-DEC-64 Y
25 21-DEC-64 Y
26 28-DEC-64 N
- 31-DEC-64 N New Year's Eve special, 'Beat in the New'
- 4-JAN-65 - No episode
27 11-JAN-65 N
28 18-JAN-65 N
29 25-JAN-65 N Final episode

The Beat Girls[edit]

The Beat Girls were created for this programme, managed and choreographed by Gary Cockrell, and are most famous today for providing most of the dancers who formed Pan's People though most joined after the Beat Room period. They were based out of the Dance Centre.

The initial line-up (July-October 1964) was:

  • Ann Chapman
  • Babs Lord
  • Jo Cook
  • Jenny Ferle
  • Lynn Wolseley
  • Ruth Pearson

This line-up is seen on the remaining publicly available footage of the Beat Girls on the Beat Room performing to Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On[6]

They also appeared in the film Gonks Go Beat.[7]

Jo Cook's period in the group ended in October 1964 due to an allegation of already being under contract; however by the following month she had formed the Go-Jos for Top of the Pops, winning the work ahead of the Beat Girls.[8] Carlotta Barrow replaced her as a regular member having already done some performances in the group.[9]

Replacement programme[edit]

The programme was followed by three series following one another in short succession on BBC2 all produced by Barry Langford, and named after Carlotta 'Zooks' Barrow, with the Beat Girls again appearing with the same main line-up. These were:

Gadzooks! It's All Happening 1 February 1965 - 24 May 1965

Gadzooks! It's The In crowd 31 May 1965 - 5 July 1965

Gadzooks! 12 July 1965 - 27 September 1965

The Beat Girls after the Beat Room[edit]

The group had several distinct lineups in its remaining history:

January 1965-August 1965 - Gadzooks[edit]

Performing on the weekly Gadzooks shows with the later Beat Room line-up.

October 1965-December 1966 - UK and Dutch TV programmes[edit]

The Beat Girls (1966), from left, Dee Dee Wilde, Lorelly Harris, Babs Lord, Diane South, Flick Colby, Penny Fergusson

The Gadzooks programmes finished in August 1965, and the group ceased to appear on a regular UK music programme. Carlotta Barrow quit the group to appear in films and then film set design.

In October 1965, the Beat Girls start appearing on a new Dutch AVRO show, Moef Ga Ga[10].

In early 1966, several of the original dancers quit. Ann Chapman first went into films and later joined the Dougie Squires' Young Generation, following him into the Second Generation. Ruth Pearson, Lyn Wolseley and Jenny Ferne left and formed a new group, Tomorrow's People which, as well as working in the UK, appeared on Aaah-Dele in the Netherlands.

Several new dancers joined. Flick Colby joined in January 1966, followed by Dee Dee Wilde in March, and Lorelly Harris and Penny Fergusson in May.

The lineup by mid-1966 was:

  • Flick Colby
  • Diane South
  • Dee Dee Wilde
  • Lorelly Harris
  • Penny Fergusson
  • Babs Lord

An AVRO Dutch programme, 'Felicity', based around Flick Colby was made in May[11] and shown on 6 September 1966. This was an entrant to the Munich film festival.[12]

The appeared on the ATV Dickie Valentine show in July-August 1966.[13]. Lesley Judd also appeared in this programme.

However the Dutch performances led to a dispute over wages and allowances for the UK-based dancers, and in December 1966, all the dancers except South quit, forming Pan's People.

January 1967-May 1968 - Dutch TV programmes[edit]

April 1968: Manfred Mann with the Beat Girls on Moef Ga Ga.[14]

Following the walk-out of the now Pan's People dancers, six Dutch dancers are recruited in open auditions, and with Diane South as both dancer and choreographer, the group continued to appear on Dutch TV shows.[15].

The original lineup in January 1967 was[16]:

  • Anke Luthart
  • Hannah de Leeuwe
  • Elsa Voelker
  • Rita Gardeslen
  • Rosa Ebbeling
  • Linda Kraay
  • Diane South

In January 68 Penney de Jager joined the group.

January 1968: Penney de Jager speaking to choreographer and fellow dancer Diane South (far left) in the Beat Girls with group The Honest Men on Moef Ga Ga.

Moef Ga Ga ended in May 1968, to be succeeded by Toppop with Penney de Jager as choreographer. The Dutch Beat Girls also ended with Moef Ga Ga.

January 1967-July 1968 - UK appearances[edit]

A different UK-based line up, with Diane South also appearing, occasionally did performances including a BBC show with Jimmy Tarbuck[17] and with Bob Monkhouse[18]. The Bob Monkhouse performers were:

  • Mandy Rawlings
  • Diane South
  • Alison Minto
  • Maggie Vincent

References[edit]

  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ "CTVA Music - UK Pop Music TV Shows - "The Beat Room" (BBC2)(1964-65)". Ctva.biz. Retrieved 2016-07-17. 
  3. ^ a b c "The Beat Room". BBC Genome. Retrieved 6 June 2017. 
  4. ^ "British Christmas Television Guide". Google. Retrieved 8 June 2017. 
  5. ^ "The Beat Room (Episode 14)". BBC. Retrieved 6 June 2017. 
  6. ^ "The Beat Girls: Whole Lotta Shakin' / Wayne Gibson (05 October 1964)". Youtube. Retrieved 7 June 2017. 
  7. ^ "Gonks Go Beat (1965)". BFI Film forever. Retrieved 7 June 2017. 
  8. ^ "Jo Cook interview". Panspeople.com. Retrieved 7 June 2017. Gary wanted to get the Beat Girls on Top of the Pops so I went to the BBC and, literally, knocked on Johnnie Stewart's door. Johnnie asked: 'Who are you?' to which I replied "I'm Jo Cook.... Johnnie asked: 'What can I do for you?', so I said 'If I show what I can do, will you give me the chance to dance on Top of the Pops?'. He agreed. 
  9. ^ "Beat Girls". Panspeople. 1967 Girls' world annual. Retrieved 8 June 2017. 
  10. ^ "Moef Ga Ga". archive. Retrieved 8 June 2017. 
  11. ^ "Met Neil Christian in Felicity". Leiden Courant. De Leidse Courant. 25 May 1966. Retrieved 8 June 2017. 
  12. ^ "Flick Colby: Dancer and choreographer whose work graced ;Top Of The Pops; across three decades". Independent. 30 May 2011. Retrieved 9 June 2017. 
  13. ^ "The Dickie Valentine Show Pictures and Images". Getty images. Getty Images. 15 June 1966. 
  14. ^ "Manfred Mann - Mighty Quinn (Quinn The Eskimo) • TopPop". Youtube. Retrieved 8 June 2017. 
  15. ^ "Love affair- Rainbow valley". Youtube. Retrieved 6 June 2017. 
  16. ^ "The new beat girls". De Telegraaf. 14 January 1967. Retrieved 9 June 2017. 
  17. ^ "Show of the Week - Jimmy Tarbuck show". BBC Genome. Retrieved 8 June 2017. 
  18. ^ "Bob Monkhouse and The Beat Girls - London". PA Imagess. Retrieved 9 June 2017. 

External links[edit]