Here’s the schedule for NBC’s experimental station W2XBS in New York City for the week starting Sunday, November 5th, 1939, straight from the weekly television listings printed in The New York Times. Once again, sporting events opened and closed the week: football on Sunday and boxing on Saturday. In between there was another chapter of the film serial The Lost Jungle, an episode of Paul Wing’s Spelling Bee, a play titled “The Farmer Takes a Wife,” an assortment of films and Ernestine Menciotti’s Miniature Opera Group presenting scenes from Carmen. There was also a third installment of “Wings Over the Nation” (also known as “Wings of a Nation”), an educational series about flying. No programs were broadcast on Monday or Tuesday.
Sunday, November 5th, 1939
2:15-5PM – Professional football: Brooklyn Dodgers vs. Pittsburgh Pirates, at Ebbets Field.
8:30-9:30PM – Irene Bordoni, singer; Paul Wing’s Spelling Bee, between artists and models; McClelland Barclay, and others.
Wednesday, November 8th, 1939
2:30-3:30PM – Louise Irwin, exercises; film serial, “The Lost Jungle,” episode XII, with Clyde Beatty; film, “Barcelona.”; Vaughn de Leath, singer.
8:30-9:30PM – Ernestine Menciotti’s Miniature Opera Group in scenes from “Carmen”; Mildred Dilling’s Harp Sextette.
Thursday, November 9th, 1939
2:30-3:30PM – Outside telecast, to be announced.
8:30-9:30PM – Film, “The Gang,” with Ralph Reader and Gina Malo.
Friday, November 10th, 1939
2:30-3:30PM – Films.
8:30-9:30PM – Play: “The Farmer Takes a Wife.”
Saturday, November 11th, 1939
2:30-3:30PM – “Wings Over the Nation”–third in a series on aviation and air travel.
9-11PM – Boxing at the Ridgewood Grove Athletic Club, Queens.
2 Replies to “W2XBS Schedule, Week of November 5th, 1939”
Another “obscure” British film shown on the 10th: “The Gang” (1937), from the independent “Herbert Wilcox Productions” [originally released in the U.K. as “The Gang Show”]- a musical dealing with a group of singing English Boy Scouts, headed by “Skipper” (Ralph Reader), who stage a revue to save their headquarters. Nice way to spend an hour in front of the TV set back then….
It’s now been established that the “Miniature Opera Group”s production of “Scenes from ‘Carmen'” was the first televised opera performance on American television. However, no film or recordings of the broadcast are known to exist.