Watch the 1958 Debut of Kraft Music Hall in Color on YouTube

Earlier this year, the UCLA Film & Television Archive held a screening to premiere the newly-restored debut episode of Kraft Music Hall in living color. Preserved from a videotape donated by Milton Berle’s widow, the October 17th, 1958 episode is the earliest surviving entertainment television program on color videotape. It aired just nine days before “An Evening with Fred Astaire,” which for years was the oldest entertainment program to survive on color videotape.

Late last month, the UCLA Film & Television Archive uploaded the full episode to YouTube. I’ve embedded the video below:

The videotape captured the final few minutes of an episode of The Price is Right that aired just before Kraft Music Hall on October 17th, 1958. There’s also a black-and-white promotional spot for the series premiere of Bat Masterson, plus commercials for Kraft products like Parkay Margarine, Philadelphia Cream Cheese, and Kraft Macaroni and Cheese Dinner.

(via the Steve Hoffman Music Forums)

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2 Replies to “Watch the 1958 Debut of Kraft Music Hall in Color on YouTube”

  1. I recall that, as a child, I enjoyed watching the last few years of the Kraft Music Hall television program. I was even interested in the commercials, I suppose because I loved listening to Ed Herlihy’s voice! But, alas, I was never able to appreciate Milton Berle’s style of humor so, while I was pleased to learn of a preserved early Kraft Music Hall episode, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to watch a show with Milton Berle in it.
    I just watched the embedded episode you provided and enjoyed much of it. I especially enjoyed the commercials, and the appearance of Gene Barry, in costume, promoting his new series, Bat Masterson.
    Thank you for sharing the video with us.

  2. I appreciate Milton Berle more as an adult than I did as a kid, although I never found him boring.

    It’s funny that it’s in color since most people at the time would have had B&W TVs. It’s also funny that you can’t buy “margarine” in stores anymore. Now it’s vegan butter.

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