TELEVISIONS FIRST POST WAR TUSLE WITH THE THEATRE -

Ivy Benson and her girls band - now playing at the nearby Wood Green Empire - were due to appear. But at the last moment the Stoll Theatre management objected; forbade Ivy Benson to appear. She was under contract and was obliged to cancel her television appearance.

The controversy still rages; some say that television helps the theatre; others that television should make it's own stars.

(Daily Mail - date unknown)


STAGE BEGINS A BATTLE AGAINST BBC
Television Ban: Ivy Waits

Miss Ivy Benson and her orchestra of 18 girls waited today on the stage of the Wood Green Empire to know whether or not they will be allowed to televise tomorrow.This is the opening round in the coming big battle between the theatres and the BBC over artists who want to both appear on the stage and at Alexandra Palace.

The Stol Theatres Corporation, with whom Miss Benson is under contract, oppose television broadcasts and take their stand on her obligation not to make another "personal appearance" apart from their bookings.The BBC preserved today it's non-committal attitude on the question. "We do not know yet whether the band will be seen and heard tomorrow or not" I was told. "We hope the difficulty will be cleared up". Miss Benson's band was booked to make two television appearances - at 3pm and 8.30.

£1,000 at stake

Miss Benson told me "I am still hoping the Stol Theatres will let me do it. I have booked the Wood Green stage today for a rehersal and spent £1,000 on 20 new costumes for television."I have my television contract and I am only playing dance music - not staging an act. I don't see that there is any difference from giving an ordinary broadcast, to which the theatre would never object. But if they insist I shall not go against their wishes, though I shall be very sorry".

(Evening News - date unknown)


To Televise or not:
BBC TO FACE SPORTS THREAT

Urgent conferences of BBC administrative chiefs, including copyright experts, were held today to discuss the new threats to television plans.The decision of the Amateur Athletic Association to ban the televising of two White City meetings on July 19 and August Bank Holiday took the BBC by surprise.

Now other organisations who are sympathetic to television are inclined to hold their hand. Alternative emergency programmes are being prepared at Alexandra Palace.It is obvious that the legal position must be clarified with the minimum of delay if television - which got away to a flying start on Victory Day - is to run smoothly.

The plan at the moment is to broadcast as many outdoor events as possible, but the sudden withdrawl of Ivy Benson and her band from programmes has brought matters to a head.Sports Promoters want to know the position with regard to the reproducing televised items on cinema screens.

Even if the popular events should be banned the television outside broadcast department will still concentrate on the open air."We have the whole of London at our disposal" I was told at Alexandra Palace today " and there are hundreds of interesting and exciting stories going on in the streets and parks every day".

Last minute arrangements had to be made to fill the time which should have been occupied today by Ivy Benson and her band.
A number of variety acts were assembled including Miss Sylvia St.Clair, the French actress. She and other artists were rehearsing today.
Artists who have already promised to take part in television were wondering today what attitude their management would take. In most contracts artists stipulate that they shall be permitted to broadcast within reason, but in few if any contracts is television specifically mentioned.

(The Star - date unknown)


IVY BENSON: "I cannot go on with television"

Miss Ivy Benson, the dance band leader and her four blonde and ten brunette musicians, will not be televising tomorrow from Alexandra Palace. She was rehearsing her band at Wood Green Empire today when she recieved a message from the Stoll management with whom she is under contract.

Stoll decision
Miss Benson told me "The message said the Stoll Theatre managers had held a meeting today and had unanimously decided that I should not appear on the television screen. They expressed their regret that it was I who had to be made the victim of this decision. I cannot see anything else to do but accept this decision.

I have spent £1,000 on special equipment and frocks; the television fee is the usual £2.10s for each musician and £5 for the leader. My contract with Stoll is worth much more than that".

Upset programme
Mr Prince Littler, chairman and manager of Stoll Theatre Corporation, said today "My company are paying Miss Benson and her band £500 for twice nightly performances this week at Wood Green Empire. She made arrangements to appear in a television programme during the same week and wanted to rearrange the programme in order to televise. This would have upset balance of the programme and that is the main reason I would not agree.

I am not against television except when it interfers with the carrying on of my own business. In time, television will produce it's own stars in the same way as radio has done. I do not see why, in the initial stages, they should try to rob music hall stages of their stars".

The Variety Artists Federation held a meeting today at their offices in Charing Cross Road to discuss the position and how it affects the future appearance of their artists before the BBC television cameras.

(Evening Standard - unknown date)

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