The Edsel Show

The Edsel Show

Infobox Television
show_name = The Edsel Show

caption = Title image from the show
format = Television special
camera = Multiple
picture_format = NTSC black and white
audio_format = Monaural
runtime = 58 minutes
starring = Bing Crosby
Frank Sinatra
Rosemary Clooney
Louis Armstrong
Lindsay Crosby
The Four Preps
Bob Hope
narrated = Warren Hull
endtheme = "On the Sunny Side of the Street"
country = United States
language = English
network = CBS
first_aired = October 13, 1957
last_aired = October 13, 1957
imdb_id = 0346927

"The Edsel Show" was an hour-long television special broadcast live on CBS in the United States on October 13, 1957, intended to promote Ford Motor Company's new Edsel cars. It was a milestone in Bing Crosby's career, and was notable as the first CBS entertainment program to be broadcast live to the nation from Hollywood then recorded on videotape for rebroadcast in the Pacific Time Zone.


"The Edsel Show" starred Bing Crosby and featured Frank Sinatra, Rosemary Clooney, Louis Armstrong, and Lindsay Crosby performing with the Four Preps. It also featured an appearance by a "mystery guest" who turned out to be Bob Hope. The show replaced the "Ed Sullivan Show" in CBS's Sunday lineup and was one of the year's most successful programs, although its popularity did not transfer to the Edsel cars. It has been credited as Bing Crosby's real television breakthrough [] , and set the pattern for his many television specials to come; in its wake he signed a lucrative contract with ABC under which he would produce two specials per year.


The show was performed at CBS Television City in the afternoon in California and broadcast live in the eastern part of the country. A videotape was made of the performance and was played back three hours later for western audiences. As videotape was a new technology, CBS made a film-based kinescope of the show and played it back alongside the videotape, so that the broadcast could switch to the kinescope if problems were encountered with the tape; there were none.

Videotape was a technology that had interested Crosby for several years, and his company Bing Crosby Enterprises had investigated several technologies, ultimately investing in Ampex, the first company to demonstrate a practical broadcast-quality videotape system when it unveiled the first 2" Quadruplex videotape machine in 1956. Crosby's interest as a performer was to avoid having to make repeated live performances of the same show.

See also

*1957 in television
*An Evening With Fred Astaire

External links

* [ A page about the show featuring a short clip]
* [ From the same site, about the discovery of the master videotape]
* [ Another clip showing various Edsel models]

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