LECTURE - The Golden Age of Television: What Made the 1950s So Special for American TV?

American television was all set to launch in the late 1930s, but its progress was interrupted by the start of World War II. Finally, by the end of the 1940s, NBC and CBS began broadcasting to their east coast affiliates. They offered viewers a wide variety of programs: situation comedies, vaudeville-style revues, and most impressively, live original dramas. Within a few years, these anthology programs, like Kraft Television Theatre and Ford Television Theatre launched the careers of soon-to-be famous directors like Arthur Penn and John Frankenheimer, actors like Paul Newman and James Dean, and playwrights like Paddy Chayevsky and Rod Serling. But by the end of the 1950s, the era of live TV “theater” was over. So too was New York City as a center of TV production. This presentation will look at the forces that made this “golden age” such an intriguing chapter in TV history and why it was so short-lived (including brief examinations of blacklisting and the TV quiz show scandals). This lecture is presented in loving memory of Jean Rose, who found such joy in attending classes at OLLI at AU.

Brian Rose is a Professor in the Department of Communication and Media Studies at Fordham University’s College at Lincoln Center, where he has taught since 1982. He’s written several books on television history and cultural programming, and conducted more than a hundred Q&A’s with leading directors, actors, and writers for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, the Screen Actors Guild, the British Academy of Film and Television Arts, and the Directors Guild of America. 

Date: Thursday, August 20
Time: 1:00-2:15 PM
Location:   Online via Zoom
  *Registrants will be e-mailed the Zoom invitation the morning of the lecture.
   

This lecture is free of charge but you must register in order to receive a Zoom invitation. The registration deadline is Thursday, August 20 at 8:00 AM.

To help the lecture to go smoothly, please click the link in the Zoom invitation by 12:55 PM.

Because this lecture may have 100+ participants, the settings are different than for OLLI study groups.

  • All attendees' microphones will be muted.
  • Questions will be taken at the end of the lecture for the speaker. Questions will be managed through the Chat function in Zoom. (See instructions below.) OLLI staff will read each question and the speaker will answer the question.

Zoom Chat Function

  • At the bottom of the Zoom screen in the center menu to the right of "Share Screen" is the Chat icon (above the word "Chat" is an icon of a quote bubble).
  • Click on "Chat." A white dialogue box will appear to the right of the video.
  • Type a question and hit Enter.
  • Note that you will only be able to submit a question to the Meeting Host or to Everyone. You will not be able to chat privately during the meeting.

Reminder

If your video is on, everyone can see you and anyone else in view of your camera.

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