Surviving Kyle MacDonnell Programs

As I mention in my article Kyle MacDonnell: TV’s Forgotten Star, very little of Kyle’s television work survives. By my estimate she appeared in more than 150 television appearances between 1948 and 1953 plus two more in 1959. I’ve been able to identify eleven that still exist. I’m hopeful that there are many more programs featuring Kyle out there somewhere, waiting to be rediscovered. Three of the surviving programs can be viewed online courtesy of the Internet Archive.

“Demonstration of Television Recording”
Date: Circa March 1949
Network: NBC

This 18-minute demonstration was put together by NBC for its affiliates and includes a technical explanation of television as well as numerous examples of WNBT-TV programs that had been recorded. One of the recorded segments featured Kyle MacDonnell. It could be from the first incarnation of For Your Pleasure (April-September 1948) but is more likely to be from Girl About Town (September 1948-June 1949). Or it could be from some other WNBT-TV series or special.

Status – The Paley Center for Media has a copy of this demonstration in its collection. See this entry from its online catalog.

The Swift Show
Date: March 31st, 1949
Network: NBC

This episode featured a first anniversary celebration. Special guests included Kyle MacDonnell and Earl Wrightson from Girl About Town who sang “You Made Us Love You.”

Status – The Paley Center for Media has a copy of this episode in its collection. See this entry from its online catalog. The Library of Congress also has a copy.

“10 Years Ago Today”
Date: April 30th, 1949
Station: WNBT-TV

This half-hour special saluted the 10th anniversary of TV station WNBT-TV in New York City. Hosted by Ben Grauer, the special featured guests Earl Wrightson, Kyle MacDonnell, Martha Wright, and The Three Flames.

Status – The UCLA Film & Television Archive has a copy of this special in its collection. See this entry from its online catalog.

The special can also be viewed online courtesy of the Internet Archive:


[Jump to 05:18 to get to Kyle singing “For Heaven’s Sake” and 10:10 to get to Kyle and Earl Wrightson singing “‘A’ You’re Adorable.”]

Cavalcade of Stars
Date: April 8th, 1950
Network: DuMont

This was Kyle’s second appearance on DuMont’s variety series hosted by Jerry Lester. Other guests included Bert Wheeler, Jerry Wayne, and Virginia Lee.

Status – The Paley Center for Media has a copy of this episode in its collection. See this entry in its online catalog.

Cavalcade of Stars
Date: April 15th, 1950
Network: DuMont

This was Kyle’s third appearance on Cavalcade of Stars. Other guests included J. Carroll Naish and Clifford Guests.

Status – The UCLA Film & Television Archive has an incomplete copy of this episode in its collection. See this entry in its online catalog. UCLA only has the second half of the episode, which may not include Kyle’s segment(s). She is not listed in the catalog entry.

Cavalcade of Stars
Date: April 22nd, 1950
Network: DuMont

This was Kyle’s fourth appearance on Cavalcade of Stars. Other guests included Johnny Johnson and Gaili Gailli. Kyle singing “The Boy Next Door” and was in a sketch with Jerry Lester in which the two sing a portion of George Gershwin’s “Nice Work If You Can Get It.”

Status – The UCLA Film & Television Archive has an incomplete copy of this episode in its collection. See this entry in its online catalog. UCLA only has the first half of the episode which includes Kyle’s song and her sketch with Jerry Lester.

The first half of the episode can also be viewed online courtesy of the Internet Archive, where it has been combined with the second half of the May 20th, 1950 episode (which did not feature Kyle):


[Jump to 09:03 to get to Kyle singing “The Boy Next Door” and 11:10 for the sketch featuring Kyle and Jerry Lester in which the two sing a portion of George Gershwin’s “Nice Work If You Can Get It.”]

Celebrity Time
Date: October 1st, 1950
Network: CBS

This was the first episode to feature Kyle alongside new permanent male panelist Herman Hickman. Guest panelists were Kitty Carlisle and Zachary Scott.

Status – In January 2016, a 6-minute fragment of this episode was uploaded to YouTube:

[Kyle can be seen for a few seconds from roughly 1:39 to 1:46.]

Hold That Camera
Date: October 20th, 1950
Network: DuMont

Kyle sings “It Had to Be You” and “Say It Isn’t So.” Guests include the dance duo of Laura and Dean, Charles Tranum and Cindy Heller from DuMont’s Manhattan Spotlight, Alan Dale, and others.

Status – The Library of Congress has a copy of this episode in its collection.

Hold That Camera
Date: December 1st, 1950
Network: DuMont

Kyle sings “The Best Things in Life Are Free” and “I’m in the Mood for Love.” Guests include an Austrian ballerina, Roscoe Karns from DuMont’s Rocky King, Inside Detective, singer Larry Douglas, and Ving Merlin and his Orchestra with a violin quartet.

Status – The Paley Center for Media has a potentially incomplete copy of this episode in its collection. See this entry in its online catalog.

The episode can also be viewed online courtesy of the Internet Archive:


[This version, which I suspect is the same version held by the Paley Center, is incomplete. It is missing the opening credits and a portion of the closing credits, some of the integrated commercials, and potentially more.]

Chance of a Lifetime
Date: November 28th, 1951
Network: ABC

This episode of ABC’s audience participation game show aired on Thanksgiving Day 1951. Host John Reed King was joined by guests Kyle McDonnell and Dorothy Moran.

Status – The UCLA Film & Television Archive has a copy of this episode in its collection. See this entry in its online catalog.

The Ed Sullivan Show
Date: May 24th, 1959
Network: CBS

Guests include Ed Wynn, Fabian, Owen McGiveney Jr., Myron Cohen, Carol Lawrence, Kyle MacDonnell, the Goofers comedy instrumental group, and singer Billy Storm.

Status – The Library of Congress has a copy of this episode in its collection.


Leave a Comment