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: A Christmas Service from YORK MINSTER

Carol: ' This day Christ was bom' (Byrd) Responses : Festal
Proper Psalms : 19, 45, 85
First Lesson : Isaiah ix, 2-7
Te Deum : Dyson in D
Second Lesson: St. Luke ii, 1-20 Benedictus : Dyson in D
Hymn : ' Hark, the herald Angels sing'
(English Hymnal, 24 ; Ancient and Modern, 6c) yORK MINSTER, like the Cathedrals of -*- Canterbury and Westminster, has been closely linked with Broadcasting since the early days of the B.B.C. It is now traditional that the Christmas Day programmes should begin with a service relayed from one of the great cathedrals. Last year it came from Canterbury, in 1929 from York. We have heard many relays, religious and musical, from York Minster. The fine old cathedral has given us Bach's Passion Music and B Minor Mass, the Messiah, and many organ recitals. Several services are regularly relayed— the Military Service each year, and, in the North Region, Evensong every week. The Easter Service and Watch Night Service, the Civic Sunday Service, and 'the Patronal Feast Service on St. Peter's Day, have all been heard on occasion. In 1926 the services of Dedication of the War Memorial Chapel and the Dedication of the Bells were relayed, in 1927 the celebrations of the thirteenth centenary of the Minster, in 1929 the Enthronement of the present Archbishop, Dr. Temple, on his predecessor's translation to the Primacy. When you listen this morning to the fine singing at York, recall for a moment the ancient history and great tradition of the Minster from which it comes to you. York Minster is, essentially, thirteen centuries and four years old. The present building stands on the site of the wooden church in which Paulinus, first Archbishop of York, baptized King Edwin of Northumbria, on Easter Day, 627. King Edwin began to build a church there in stone, but it was partly destroyed in the troubles that followed his death. It was repaired and completed, but burned down in the Fire of York at the time of the Norman Invasion. The present church was built between 1150 and 1250 and rebuilt up to about 1472. This purely Gothic church is now the largest cathedral in the country-and an exquisite setting for the Christmas Service you are to hear this morning.

: The Trocadero Orchestra

Directed by ALFRED VAN DAM
ALFRED VAN DAM and his orchestra have been playing at the Trocadero Cinema practically ever since its opening early this year. Van Dam himself was at one time with the Carl Rosa Opera Company. Then he joined the musical side of the Gaumont British Company, playing at various of their cinemas, at Stratford, Preston, Wolverhampton, etc., before taking charge of the orchestra at the Elephant and Castle. He is English by birth and studied the violin with Albert Sammons. Today's programme is light and melodious. Put the loud speaker on the sideboard among the almonds-and-raisins and crystallized fruits !
The Programme :


Directed By: Alfred Van
Unknown: Alfred van Dam
Unknown: Van Dam
Unknown: Albert Sammons.

: The Regal Orchestra



Conducted By: Ernest Parsons

: Reginald Foort at the Organ of The Regal, Marble Arch

REGINALD FOORT is the doyen of cinema organists. As such, he has been popular with listeners ever since his first broadcasts from the New Gallery in 1925. Musical purists scorn the cinema organ, which they regard as a ragtime version of the church or concert organ. The cinema organist, however, thinks otherwise. He rightly looks upon his instrument as a separate and particular thing which, without debarring sound musicianship, contributes vastly to the entertainment of popular audiences. Reginald Fooit was born at Daventry ; this alone would seem to qualify him for fame as a broadcaster. In pre-war days he was one of the youngest musicians to qualify as a F.R.C.O., his first post being that of organist at St. Mary's, Dryanston Square.
The Programme :


Unknown: Reginald Fooit

: Moschetto and his Orchestra

VAN DAM for dinner, Moschetto with our tea !
Again a jolly programme of tunes that everybody knows. Moschetto went to the Dorchester when it opened, early in the autumn. Before that, you will remember, he played to us for three years from the May Fair, having gone there after five years at the Savoy (from which he gave his first broadcast, early in 1928). Moschetto has provided ' lunch-time ' music for many fashionable hotels and restaurants. At one time, we recall, he was at the Caf6 de Paris, Monte Carlo. During the war he fought with the Italian Army, but after a while was seconded to play as violinist in Toscanini's orchestra at the Reggio Theatre in Turin.
The Programme :


Unknown: Monte Carlo.

: The Children's Hour

(From West Regional)
' Joan and Betty's Christmas Cards '
A Christmas Programme arranged by Mr. E. R. APPLETON , West Regional Director


Arranged By: Mr. E. R. Appleton

: A Service from the Studio

Conducted by The Reverend
Canon C. S. Woodward , M.C.
Hymn (Ancient and Modem, 59), 0 come, all ye Faithful
Hymn (Ancient and Modem, 60), Hark, the herald Angels sing
Bible Lesson, Isaiah ix, 2-7. St. Luke ii, 1-7 Anthem, In dulci jubilo
Address by the Reverend C. S. Woodward ,
M.C., Canon of Westminster
Hymn (English Hymnal, 26), It came upon the midnight clear


Unknown: Canon C. S. Woodward
Unknown: C. S. Woodward

Blog post that mentions this programme:

Advent Calendar Day 18: An Experiment with Time and Christmas 18 December 2016

: Egwyl Gymraeg

(From Swansea)
Y Parch J. J. WILLIAMS, B.A. ' Nadolig Mewn Hen Bentref'
(' Christmas in an Old Village ')
THE Daventry National audience is the largest and most representative in the British Isles.
It is, therefore, appropriate that on Christmas Day, of all days, Welsh listeners should find provision in the programmes for their nationalist interests. Tonight's talk is a reminiscence of Christmas in a Welsh village over fifty years ago Mr. Williams will describe old country customs, such as ' Spoiling the toffee ' (cyflaith), story-telling, carol singing, rivalry with a neighbouring village for possession of a favourite holly tree, and other incidents of a merry Christmas in the days when the peat fire and the rush candle were still used. We warn non-Welsh listeners that this interlude is to be broadcast in Welsh in case those who are enjoying that delicious somnolence that follows Christmas dinner may imagine that their sets have achieved the unimaginable and picked up China !

: ERNEST LONGSTAFFE Presents The Popular Oriental Pantomime c ALADDIN'

Written, produced, conducted, orchestrated and, with the exception of certain interpolated numbers, composed by ERNEST LONGSTAFFE
Characters :
Stallkeepers, Slaves, Attendants, and Guards, etc.
Scenes :
Scene 1. The Market Place of Old Pekin
Scene 2. The Widow O'Twankey's Laundry, which is not too flourishing
Scene 3. The Cave (i) Outside, (ii) Inside
Scene 4. Back to the Laundry-magical transformations
Scene 5. Next morning-a Palace built in a night
Scene 6. The return of Abanaza-vengeance
Scene 7. Audience Hall of the Emperor's Palace Scene 8. The Courtyard-more vengeance Scene 9. Abanaza's camp and discomfiture
Scene 10. Back to the Palace for more magic and the «
LONGSTAFFE'S Aladdin . will be, for thousands-perhaps millions-of listeners the peak of Christmas broadcasting. The Longstaffe method is well known to the public—speed, simplicity, gaiety, melody-the work of a man who is not only producer and conductor of his shows, but author, lyric-writer, composer, and musical arranger. Ernest Longstaffe leaves in two days for France, on his way to a theatrical tour of the East. We wish him success. His broadcast productions have brought a great deal of happiness.
Aladdin is one of the classic stories of pantomime. Panto began in the eighteenth century as a haphazard musical entertainment somewhat on the lines of a modern revue. Harlequin and Columbine were hero and heroine then ; their freakish adventures among mortals were adorned with music, dances and scenic effects. It was only in Victorian times that pantomime adopted the fairy tales of Perrault and The Arabian Nights, and Harlequin and Columbine were relegated to the epilogue known as the Harlequinade, where they chased Policeman and Pantaloon in and out of the doors and windows of the sausage shop.
Ernest Longstaffe has so far given us four pantomimes. Last year's was Red Riding Hood. He differs from stage tradition in making his principal boy genuinely male. This year's Aladdin is Harold Kimberley-welcome reappearance of one of the very first of broadcasters whose long record of appearances at the microphone has been broken, for two years, by illness. Leonard Henry again ' stars ' as* comedian. He plays the traditional part of Wishee Washee. With him is Florence Marks as the Widow O'Twankey, a Chino-Irish washerwoman. She needs no introduction here. Listeners will recall her vaudeville appearances, alone and with Wilfred Shine , her performance in a dozen of theMcConnell revues. Leonard Henry continues, by reason of his dynamic vitality and inventive genius, to rank as one of the half-dozen outstanding comedians of broadcasting. With Clapham and Dwyer,
Tommy Handley , Gillie Potter , Claude Hulbert , Stainless Stephen, and Horace Kenney , he has for many years headed the list of those who make us laugh. Those who recall last year's radio pantomime will remember the Henry-Marks duet Put your troubles through the Mangle and Leonard Henry 's own performance on a five-barred gate. We can be sure of something equally entertaining this year.
No Christmas Day would be complete without a pantomime, and, the theatres being closed today, it is left to broadcasting to provide the familiar article. Mr. Longstaffe and his company have been rehearsing over the holidays to give Aladdin the success it deserves. It merely remains for us simple-hearted folk to pull up the chairs round the fire, tell the children to shut up, and listen !


Composed By: Ernest Longstaffe
Unknown: Ernest Longstaffe
Unknown: Ernest Longstaffe
Unknown: Harold Kimberley-Welcome
Unknown: Leonard Henry
Unknown: Wilfred Shine
Unknown: Leonard Henry
Unknown: Tommy Handley
Unknown: Gillie Potter
Unknown: Claude Hulbert
Unknown: Horace Kenney
Unknown: Leonard Henry
The Narrator: Cyril Nash
The Lord Chamberlain (licensed by himself): Philip Wade
The Emperor of China (' His Unutterableness '): Donald Davies
The Princess (his delectable daughter): Olive Groves
Widow O'Twankey ' (who keeps a Chino-Irish laundry): Florence Marks
The Spirit of the Ring :: Philip Wade
The Spirit of the Lamp (untaxed as yet): Cyril Nash
Aladdin (the widow's son-our hero): Harold Kimberley
Wishee Washee (his boon companion in adventure): Leonard Henry
Abanaza (one hundred per cent wicked sorcerer and then some): Foster Richardson

Blog post that mentions this programme:

Advent Calendar Day 18: An Experiment with Time and Christmas 18 December 2016

: Appeal on behalf of the British Wireless for the Blind Fund

by the Right Hon. the Viscount
Snowden of Ickornshaw rpHIS Appeal on behalf of the British Wireless for the Blind Fund has become a traditional feature of the Christmas Day programmes. Tonight's speaker on the Fund's behalf is Viscount Snowden ; we have heard him this year in less charitable mood. Last year Mr. Churchill spoke. The Wireless for the Blind Fund can always call upon speakers of such a calibre ; from its inception it has captured public imagination as a cause admirably conceived and as admirably conducted. For the interest and information of listeners we print on page 972 a summary of its annual report and accounts.
The work of the Fund must be known to every listener. Under the Presidency of H.R.H. the Prince of Wales, it has worked to supply every blind person in the country with a wireless set of simple design. There is no need to stress here what wireless means to the blind listener. It is his newspaper, his theatre, his cinema. Within two years the Fund has equipped 18,000 blind people with sets. It requires now a further sum of £4,500 to supply 2,000 more sets. When this has been accomplished, the whole of the blind population of Great Britain and Northern Ireland will be in touch with the programmes. Listen -and give ! Large sums and small, all alike will be gratefully received and acknowledged by the Ht. Hon. Reginald McKenna , [address removed]


Unknown: Viscount Snowden
Unknown: Reginald McKenna

Blog post that mentions this programme:

Advent Calendar Day 18: An Experiment with Time and Christmas 18 December 2016

: Christmas Songs by John Coates

Welcome Yule, 15th Century Carol-Air from Deuteromelia, 1609
HERE are the Christmas Songs, sung by John Coates, a favourite artist, certain of a warm welcome. John Coates has written to us about tonight's programme. This is what he says : 'The words of the first song are from a Sloane MS. in the British Museum, and Mr. Edmondstoune Duncan dates them time of Henry VI, before we had any printing. This fifteenth-century carol brings in all the saints' days that make a red-letter cluster round Christmas Day, and goes on to the New Year, Twelfth Day, and Candelmas, with a " Welcum Yol " at the end of each verse ; I think I shall say " Welcome Yule " (but, of course, you needn't) and each time I sing that refrain there will be good time for you to echo it in chorus. The air is from a collection called " Deuteromelia " which Thomas Ravenscroft published in 1609 ; the title is evidently coined from the Greek, signifying that it was the " Second Pait of Musick's Melodie (he had published an earlier one the same year which he called "Pammelia-Musick's Miscellanie, etc."). These collections were not contemporary songs ; Ravenscroft's research was in the past, and he may be described as our first musical antiquary. As a boy he was a chorister at St. Paul's (the old Cathedral, of course, which was destroyed in the Great Fire of 1666).'


Sung By: John Coates
Unknown: John Coates
Unknown: Thomas Ravenscroft

: Half the World Away

An Experiment with Time and Christmas

Here comes the second of tonight's big programmes. The first was Aladdin, with its atmosphere of old-fashioned Christmas; Half the World Away is Christmas-in-modern-dress, one of those fascinating, highly technical programmes which someone devises every now and then to remind us that broadcasting and wireless telephony really are modern miracles. The idea of Half the World Away is briefly this. Here we are, comfortably seated in one part or another of the British Isles, having celebrated Christmas in as near the good old-fashioned way as finances have allowed. At the same time, or later and earlier as the variations of time decree, there are millions of other Britishers all round the world celebrating Christmas in their particular way. The day is almost at an end here; before it closes, why shouldn't we get into touch with other parts of the Empire and hear what Christmas is, has been, or will be like with them?

In the studio at Savoy Hill sits Stephen King-Hall, a seasoned broadcaster whose intimate and informal microphone manner is well known to most of us. Arrangements have been made to connect him by telephone with various corners of the Empire. He will ask them what kind of Christmas they have spent, how things are going, what the weather is like. Their replies, following one after another as quickly as the technical intricacies of the programme will allow, should, if things are successful, present a picture, the title of which might be 'An Empire keeps Christmas.' On page 967 you will find a map illustrating the course this Empire Tour will take.

The time-variation to which we referred above is part of the fascination of the programme. We start from Britain ; the time in 9.45 p.m. Our kicking-off point is, appropriately, the Tower of London, where Mr. King-Hall will chat with Mr. Smoker, the Yeoman Porter , whose voice we have often heard in reply to the challenge of the sentries during the Ceremony of the Keys broadcasts. How has Mr. Smoker spent Christmas?
After the Tower we fly on telephonic wings to the wild coasts of the North, where a lighthouse keeper will have something to say about his Christmas Day; next to Gibraltar, where the little British colony will be celebrating Christmas in the good old way; and on to Cape Town. As we ring off from Cape Town, where it will be midnight, we shall hear Big Ben strike ten in London. Our next hop will be an enormous one - across to Sydney, N.S.W., where it is now Boxing Day in high summer and Bradman will soon be piling up runs under a baking blue sky.
From, Sydney to Vancouver-another big 'hop.' In Vancouver they will just have finished lunch; thus we shall have recaptured, with modern magic, the whole of Christmas afternoon. On we go to Edmonton, and then to Montreal, with a pause at Niagara Falls. If luck is with us and the Falls are not frozen solid (fantastic thought), we shall hear, for the first time in this country, the voice of those titanic waters; 1,000,000 cubic feet of water pass over the Falls each second. If you had a penny for every pint of this, your income would be nearly seven billion pounds a year. This sort of. statistics makes us quite tired-but there you are ! someone must have bothered to work it out. In Montreal we shall find them finishing tea, and when, on our homeward flight across the Atlantic, we stop to talk to the liner Majestic, we shall interrupt someone at dinner. From the Majestic we pass to Dublin and, as Big Ben's hands are creeping towards 10.30, back to London.


Unknown: Yeoman Porter

Blog post that mentions this programme:

Advent Calendar Day 18: An Experiment with Time and Christmas 18 December 2016


The Savoy Hotel Orpheans, from
The Savoy Hotel
THE recent reappearance in the programmes of the words ' Savoy Hotel Orpheans ' provides a link between Broadcasting today and the seemingly dim distant days of the B.B.C.'s youth. The original Orpheans first broadcast on October 3, 1923. The B.B.C. was less than a year old and the programmes just beginning to find shape. That particular month of October was marked by the opening of Aberdeen and Bournemouth
Stations, by the first broadcast of a complete opera (II Trovatore), the first relay from an opera house (the Garden Scene from Faust from the Old Vic), the first radio-dramatization of a novel (Rob Roy from Glasgow) and the microphone debut of the Roosters. The Orpheans, being the most important -Jance band broadcasting, enjoyed tremendous popularity with the then small body of listeners. With their colleagues of the Savoy Havana Band they broadcast regularly for five years, ceasing in September, 1928, to be succeeded by Fred Elizalde 's band, which continued broadcasting dance music until February of the following year. We welcome the return of the ' Savoy touch' to the programmes.


Unknown: Rob Roy
Unknown: Fred Elizalde

: Jack Payne and his B.B.C. Dance Orchestra

CHRISTMAS Broadcasting would not be complete for thousands of listeners without a programme from Jack Payne and his ' boys.' To-night, in deference to the many family parties at which dancing will be in full swing, their programme will no doubt live up to its usual designation of ' Dance Music.' At other times Jack Payne varies his programme, for he knows that on three hundred and sixty-four days of the year, his audience consists of many more' listeners' than ' dancers.' The latter may sometimes protest that their interests are neglected; they must remember, however, that they are served by the many outside dance bands who play exclusively for dancing. The steady dance rhythm tends to become monotonous to those who are not dancing to it; Jack Payne varies his programmes with comedy songs of the ' vaudeville ' type, music from the new shows, revivals of old favourites, Viennese waltzes, ' symphonic ' pieces such as Ravel's Bolero, which the band has so successfully recorded, with a very slight seasoning of ' hot' numbers on the lines of the famous American bands. This band costs more-and earns more-than any in this country. Its reputation is tremendous, not only for broadcasting, but as a recording band and a record-breaking music-hall act. Jack Payne and his. boys work for their success, though, When we hear of 1,500 hours rehearsal per annum for broadcasting alone, of
1.000 new dance numbers to be played each year, of a twelve-hour day of rehearsal, recording, broadcasting, music-hall appearance, we almost feel glad to be penniless, oppressed pen-drivers that we are I
And now, ladies and gentlemen, with Jack Payne , we wish you all' Good Night.' Carols, pantomime, Empire telephone calls and dance tunes have gone their way, and even Savoy Hill, which is alive and working for fifteen hours of every day in the year must close down. We hope you have enjoyed the Christmas Programmes.


Unknown: Jack Payne
Unknown: Jack Payne
Unknown: Jack Payne
Unknown: Jack Payne
Unknown: Jack Payne

About this project

This site contains the BBC listings information which the BBC printed in Radio Times between 1923 and 2009. You can search the site for BBC programmes, people, dates and Radio Times editions.

We hope it helps you find information about that long forgotten BBC programme, research a particular person or browse your own involvement with the BBC.

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