The King Sisters, Donna, Yvonne (Vonnie), Luise. Maxine and Alyce, were often featured on the first season of the Nick Vanoff and Bill Harbach produced ABC-TV Saturday night variety series "The Hollywood Palace." Prior to the second black and white broadcast season of the "Hollywood Palace" variety series, Vanoff and Harbach produced an hour "King Family Show" pilot special for ABC TV (during the month of August 1964). The pilot production staff was assembled from the "Hollywood Palace" creative team, directed by Grey Lockwood, production designer Jim Trittipo, art director Hub Braden, choreography and staging by the husband and wife team, Marc Breaux and Dee Dee Wood, and with lighting designer Jack Denton. The "King Family" special-pilot, multiple (5) camera, was video taped at the Hollywood Palace studio facility with Mitchell Ayers and the HP orchestra. This "special" (pilot) aired on January 23, 1965, following the lead in of the "Hollywood Palace", introducing the mid-"black and white broadcast season" ABC-TV (January-June 1965) one-hour program; the television production was scheduled into the ABC Hollywood Palace Studio stage rehearsing and taping from Sunday-Tuesday, with the Hollywood Palace rehearsed and taped from Wednesday-Saturday. "The King Family" video-taped-series replaced ABC's Wednesday night film-series "The Outer Limits." A new production team was assembled for the new series by Executive Producer Nick Vanoff, with Saul Ilson functioning as Producer. Marc Breaux was the director, who worked with his wife Dee Dee Woods in staging, and choreographing the King Sisters' mob-and-family in all the production numbers. Romaine Johnston was the Production Designer, with Michael Baugh as his art director. Jack Denton was lighting designer. Mitchell Ayers and the HP orchestra served both the HP and the King Family shows. The series featured husbands Alvino Rey, Del Courtney, Alyce's husband, actor Robert Clarke, and her sons, Ric de Azevedo, Lex de Azevedo and Cam Clark. In all, some thirty seven members of the King Family, ranging in age from seven months to 79 years, were seen on the show. Tina Cole, later featured on "My Three Sons," regularly appeared. While successful in its initial B&W season, ABC network trimmed the show to a half-hour "color broadcast" on September 18, 1966, moving its start time from 7:30 to 8:pm (EST) enabling "Shindig" to appear before it. The show's ratings declined, up against Jackie Gleason on CBS and "I Dream of Jeannie" on NBC, but the show had an intense loyal following. The "King Family" show was canceled in January 1967. In March 1969, after the television program "Turn-On" was canceled after a single airing, ABC brought back a pared-down "King Family Show" that focused on a sub-group of the family "The Four King Cousins" - which consisted of family members Tina and sister Cathy Cole, and their cousins Candy Brand and Carolyn Cameron. The color format program occupied the ABC-TV Wednesday 8:30-9:00 pm time slot until September 1969. See more »
You probably remember a later version of the show...
The King Family had several incarnations up through the early 70's. The show was renewed for the 1966-67 season, and made a brief comeback as a regular series in the Spring of 1969. They also did several guest appearances on Ed Sullivan and Hollywood Palace. In 1967, they began producing a series of holiday specials, beginning with Thanksgiving and Christmas. By 1971, they ended up with a special for every month of the year (there was a joke about "Groundhog Day with the King Family"), many of which were repeatedly aired in syndication for years after. The last special was a new Christmas show in 1974. The "pastel colors" you remember were not from the first two seasons - they were black & white. How do I know all this? I was one of the kids in the show.
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