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  • A Trip To Christmas - The Bell Telephone Hour [VHS]
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A Trip To Christmas - The Bell Telephone Hour [VHS]

3 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Actors: Jane Wyatt, Earl Wrightson, Lois Hunt
  • Format: Color, NTSC
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Number of tapes: 1
  • Studio: Kultur Video
  • VHS Release Date: October 4, 1994
  • Run Time: 47 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6303168493
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #384,076 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By albertatamazon on July 29, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
This video is a rare find...a Christmas program from the classic "Bell Telephone Hour" series,one of the finest music programs ever to hit the airwaves. Some of it may seem downright corny,especially those hard-to-take kids,but this 1961 offering is a glorious example of what good Christmas programs used to be like before rock and country music took them over. Opera stars giving GOOD renditions of carols (NOT making them sound like operatic arias) are featured along with such classic ballet stars as Edward Villella dancing selections from "The Nutcracker". The entire show has been photographed on a set made up to resemble a small town celebrating Christmas.The opera singers sing their selections in informal settings,for example,the beautiful soprano Lisa della Casa is seen singing a child to sleep with the lovely "Gesu Bambino" (which Pavarotti lovers may recognize),and Earl Wrightson and Lois Hunt sing traditional carols in a Victorian setting ,a scene which is capped off by the Columbus Boychoir filing indoors in a procession and singing three carols.The finale of the program is a perhaps now dated,but sincere pantomime representation of the first Christmas,with dignified narration by "Father Knows Best" star Jane Wyatt,who also serves as hostess for the program---unfortunately,her reading of "Yes,Virginia,There Is A Santa Claus" is delivered in a cutesy,condescending,talking-down-to children style(she DOES read the letter to that irritating bunch of kids,who,at first,get in the way of enjoyment of the music). The visual quality of this video is amazing,considering the fact that it has been remastered from a 1961 studio videotape,but the colors WILL look a little too ripe.Read more ›
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Enda Bracken on January 7, 2008
Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
I agree with A. Moreno. Apart from the "cuteness" of children with whom hostess Jane Wyatt talks to (and this could be forgiven as it was in 1961 when this was still a cultural family "ideal", the videotape is a masterful transfer).
The production values are high and the professionalism of the well-rehearsed performers compaed to our age of short-scene edits is stunning.
There are long scenes with tracking cameras particularly in the Nutcracker ballet and the extended "English Christmas" ensemble segment.

As well as the Lennon Sisters (whose harmonies have the status of "classicalas far as I am concerned), the glorious Lisa Della Casa and ballet stars Violette Verdy & Edward Villella, I found it wonderful to see and hear the wonderful, robust baritone of Earl Wrightson and his wife soprano Lois Hunt. I was so pleased at last to see an American soprano who never reached the heights I felt she deserved - Phyllis Curtin - who sings "O Holy Night" beautifully (but not as well as she did on an Andre Kostelenetz Christmas LP in 1965).

It is a time capsule of a past era when people and children could be exposed to large chunks of culture by the mainstream media. (The ballet segment is given a generous portion of time).

It is a very highly recommended time capsule.
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Format: VHS Tape
For any fan of the Lennon Sisters, this video is a must have collectors item!! The Lennon Sisters (in this video it is just Peggy, Janet, and Kathy) sing "Santa Claus is Coming to Town". This is one of two Christmas videos they appeared in.
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