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July 30, 1951

Auditioned for Peter Potter's "Search for a Song"
Sang "The Waiting Song (My Johnny)". Was accepted and given show date of September 26.

Local Show Goes National: Peter Potter's show went national from 9/13/1953 to 3/28/1954 on ABC. It was called "Jukebox Jury" for one month and then was renamed "The Peter Potter Show."

August 6, 1951

Auditioned for Peter Potter's "Search for a Song"
Sang "Bermuda." Was not accepted; Peter Potter liked the tune, but felt the original lyrics were "too depressing."

August 13, 1951

Auditioned for Peter Potter's "Search for a Song"
Sang revised "Bermuda" and "Little Boy Bullfighter (El Niņo Torreador)". Was accepted and given show dates of October 31 and November 5.

August 20, 1951

Auditioned for Peter Potter's "Search for a Song"
Sang "Merry Xmas."

September 26, 1951

Peter Potter's "Search for a Song"
KNXT in Hollywood, California
Cynthia performed "The Waiting Song (My Johnny)".

Dressed for Success: Calendar of Cynthia's mother, Edith [Bell] Strother, indicates they went to a store called "Hartfield's" on Monday, September 24, and purchased a "Grey jersey dress, $12.95; blue suede shoes, $7.09," for Cynthia's appearance on the show.

First Place: Cynthia won the highest "Audience Applause" rating that night. Won two tickets to the Ice Follies and an orchid corsage.

October 24, 1951

Peter Potter's "Search for a Song"
KNXT in Hollywood, California
Cynthia performed "Merry Xmas"

October 31, 1951

Peter Potter's "Search for a Song"
KNXT in Hollywood, California
Cynthia and Kay perform "Bermuda"
The song was purchased by Goday Music the next day. The girls made a trip to Hollywood on Saturday, November 3, to make a demo recording of "Bermuda" for Goday. The demo was pitched to Capitol and RCA.

Solo to Trio to Duo: The Bell Sisters weren't necessarily intended to be a sister act. Cynthia had a sore throat that night, so Kay went along to back her up. Sharon was also supposed to go, but had laryngitis from her participation at a school assembly. It was often reported that she missed the "big event" to go on a date.

One in a Thousand: According to several articles with Peter Potter, of the 1,000+ songs debuted on "Search for a Song," only 38 were purchased by music publishers, only 12 of those were recorded by a major label, and only "Bermuda" was ever a hit record.

November 7, 1951

Peter Potter's "Search for a Song"
KNXT in Hollywood, California
Cynthia [and Kay?] performed "Hopin'" (also known as "Hopin' Til I Die")

Returning Champ: One article indicated Cynthia (and Kay) appeared on Peter Potter's show 5 times as contestants and received first prize each time.

December 14, 1951

Peter Potter's "Search for a Song"
KNXT in Hollywood, California
Pre-release party for "Bermuda."

December 24, 1951

Peter Potter Christmas Party
KNXT in Hollywood, California

January 22, 1952

The Frank Sinatra Television Show (CBS, Sponsor: Ecko Housewares)
Also appearing were Buster Keaton, Beatrice Kaye, Joe Laurie Jr., George McManus, and the Heathertones.
Broadcast from CBS Studios, Hollywood, California

February 1952

The Alan Young Show (scheduled; not yet confirmed)

February 2, 1952

The Tallulah Bankhead Show (possibly hosting "All-Star Revue") (was scheduled; not yet confirmed)

February 5, 1952

The Dinah Shore Show (NBC) VIDEO
Broadcast from NBC Radio City, Hollywood, California IMAGE IMAGE

February 22, 1952

Bob McLaughlin's "Picture Album" (KLAC, half hour)
(Sponsor: H.J. Caruso, Dodge-Plymouth Dealer)
Also appearing were Herm Saunders Trio, Wade Ray, Ralph Flanagan Orchestra
Bell Sisters perform "Bermuda"

March 3, 1952

Peter Potter's Party (KNXT, Channel 2)

Autographs: Bell Sisters autographed their records on the show.

March 3, 1952

Peter Potter Jubilee Show (KNXT, Channel 2)

April 2, 1952

Al Pierce Show

April 26, 1952

The Bob Hope Show (All Star Revue) (NBC) VIDEO
Filmed at Fort Scott (the Presidio), San Francisco, California
Also appearing were Fred MacMurray (his television debut), Gale Robbins, Hy Averback, Alfred Apaka and Les Brown

Bell Sisters perform "Wheel of Fortune" and then a silly rendition of "June Night" with Bob Hope. IMAGE

May 24-25, 1952

Celebrity Parade (KECA) (15 hour marathon)
For benefit of United Cerebral Palsy Association of Los Angeles County
Also appearing was Bob Hope

June 21-22, 1952

Bob Hope/Bing Crosby Olympic Telethon IMAGE
El Capitan Theater, Hollywood
Televised coast-to-coast on combined NBC and CBS networks

Amount Raised: Raised $1,000,020 for 1952 U.S. Olympic Fund (Helsinki, Finland)

June 30, 1952

Jimmie McHugh Show

August 13 & 15, 1952

The Perry Como Show (possibly episode of "Chesterfield Supper Club" or "All-Star Review"; sponsored by CBS)
Filmed in New York City (aired on 8/23/1952?)
Hosted both nights by Eddy Arnold

September 20, 1952

Peter Potter's "Juke Box Jury" (KNXT, Channel 2)

Nationwide: Reference to this appearance found on dated family reel to reel in a recorded discussion between Kay and a friend. According to Kay, it's the first coast to coast hookup of the show (which she pronounces "hiccup").

October 25-26, 1952

City of Hope Telethon

November 8, 1952

Peter Potter's "Juke Box Jury" (KNXT, Channel 2)
Hollywood, California
Guests: Stan Freberg, Bell Sisters
Jury: Robert Stack, Kay Starr, Jerry Colonna, Fifi D'Orsay, John Hall, and Molly Bee.

November 11, 1952

"Helpfully Yours" Show (NBC, on KNBH, Channel 4)
Appeared on special "Teen Age" program

November 16, 1952

The Donald O'Connor Show (Colgate Comedy Hour, NBC)
Hollywood, California
Also appearing were Ann Sheridan, Patti Moore, Ben Lessey, Sid Miller, Tom D'Andrea and Hal March.
Bell Sisters perform "There's a Ship Comin' In."

January 24, 1953

Peter Potter's "Juke Box Jury" (KNXT, Channel 2)
Hollywood, California
Special Guest: Jean Gale
Jury: Cynthia Bell, Desi Arnaz, Page Cavanaugh, Lois Butler, Marion Hutton, and Marvin Miller.

February 24, 1953

Webster Webfoot (Jimmy Weldon)
KLAC, Los Angeles (Channel 13)
Edith Strother and all 7 kids are interviewed on the show. Bell Sisters do not perform, but Jimmy plays a version of "Bermuda" sung by little Webster (duck puppet). AUDIO

March 29, 1953

The Bob Hope Show (Colgate Comedy Hour) (NBC)
Filmed at El Capitan Theater, Hollywood, California
Also appearing was Rosemary Clooney

Bell Sisters perform "Do It Again" and then "June Night" with Bob Hope.

April 25, 1953

The Red Skelton Show

May 30, 1953

Peter Potter Television Show

June 5-6, 1953

United Cerebral Palsy Telethon (KECA-TV)
Televised from Carthay Circle Theatre, Los Angeles, CA
Jack Webb was the M.C. of the program titled "On Stage for Cerebral Palsy." Also appearing was Bob Hope.

Mid-1953

United Cerebral Palsy Telethon
Televised from Dallas, Texas

June 29, 1953

The Johnny Carson Show (Sponsor: Carter's Little Liver Pills)
Booked by Ted Bates Advertising Agency
Bell Sisters perform "Dance of Love" and "Do It Again."

August 16, 1953

TV Show (Jack Douglas Productions)
Booked by William Morris Agency

August 19, 1953

Art Linkletter Show

September 19, 1953

Peter Potter's "Juke Box Jury"

September 30, 1953

Dude Martin Show (hour long) (Sponsor: Sears)
Also appearing were Jimmy Allen, Red Coffey, The Mercer Brothers, Dick Stewart, Patti Taylor, Gogi Grant
Bell Sisters perform "Heartless" and "Take Back Your Gold."
Booked by William Morris Agency

Late 1953

United Cerebral Palsy Telethon
Televised from Dallas, Texas

October 9, 1953

Bakersfield, California
Two television appearances (and one radio); promotion for "Those Redheads from Seattle." Personal postcard to relative (Oran Bell) says "appearing tomorrow in Salinas."

October 22, 1953

Lux Video Theater
Cynthia filmed Lux Soap commercial.

December 12-13, 1953

United Cerebral Palsy Telethon
Televised from Baltimore, Maryland

January 15, 1954

Western Varieties TV Show
Booked by William Morris Agency

March 21, 1954

Crippled Children's Telethon (Sponsor: American Federation of Television and Radio Artists)

September 20, 1954

"Operation Entertainment" VIDEO (NBC, one hour, live national telecast)
Sponsored by Armed Forces (U.S. Army) with the American Federation of Labor; presentation of awards to members of the acting profession who made overseas tours to entertain the Armed Forces.
Appearing with Danny Kaye, William Holden, Ray Bolger, Jerry Colonna, Jimmy Wakely, Carolina Cotton, Audrey Totter, Debbie Reynolds, Eddie Fisher, Ronald Reagan, Danny Thomas.
Bell Sisters appear in a Christmas-theme skit without performing, then return at the end, introduced by William Holden, to perform "My Heart Belongs to Daddy" acapella, to help fill time. Also seen in closing credits.

December 13-17, 1954

7 To 8 Program (NBC)

December 1954

Today Show (NBC)
Also featuring Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis, General Omar Bradley.

January 29, 1955

Hollywood's Best T.V. Show

November 22, 1955

The Mickey Mouse Club IMAGE AUDIO VIDEO
Episode #37 (Year 3, #A-12)
Bell Sisters perform "Bermuda" and "Little Boy Bullfighter."

Taping Date: This episode was taped on 7/30/1955. The Bells received $450 for their appearance.

Cut Down to Size: Original show was 1 hour long, but in 1959 Disney cut episodes down to 1/2 hour for re-broadcast. "Bermuda" sequence was cut (leaving "Little Boy Bullfighter"), but announcer voice-over still indicates Bell Sisters will be singing "two songs they recorded when they were youngsters."

Other Television Notes

1954 - Our Uncle Dudley (NBC Pilot)
Bell Sisters filmed a pilot of this show that never was, in which they co-starred with Rudy Vallee. A recording of the song "Crazy Drink," which features a break in the song to announce the arrival of Uncle Dudley, and recordings of "June Night" and "Take Back Your Gold" (also recorded for the show) are in family possession. Court records show date of NBC Kinescope Audition as 4/25/1954.


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