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The Alan Young Show
GenreVariety, comedy
Written byLeo Solomon
David R. Schwartz
Alan Young
StarringAlan Young
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons3
ProducersRalph Levy
Richard Linkroum
Original networkCBS
Original releaseApril 6, 1950 (1950-04-06) –
June 21, 1953 (1953-06-21)

The Alan Young Show is an American radio and television series presented in diverse formats over a nine-year period and starring English born comedian Alan Young.


The series began on NBC Radio, running June 28, 1944 - September 20, 1944, as a summer replacement for Eddie Cantor's program with Sal Hepatica as sponsor.[1] Young's character was "a bashful young man".[2] The show also featured vocalist Bea Wain, with music by Peter Van Steeden.[3]

From October 3, 1944, to June 28, 1946, the program was on ABC Radio with Young's girlfriend Betty portrayed by Jean Gillespie and Doris Singleton and with Ed Begley as Betty's father. Will Glickman and Jay Sommers were the writers.[3]

The program returned to NBC September 20, 1946, - May 30, 1947, with Ipana as sponsor. It was off in 1948. When it returned to NBC January 11, 1949 - July 5, 1949, Louise Erickson played Betty and Jim Backus was heard as wealthy and snobbish playboy Hubert Updike III. Don Wilson was the announcer, and George Wylie provided the music. Helen Mack was the producer and director.[3]


Young and Dawn Addams, 1953.
Young and Dawn Addams, 1953.

Young had his first television program on the West Coast beginning on March 14, 1950, and the network version of The Alan Young Show debuted on CBS on April 6, 1950,[1] as a variety, sketch comedy show. Each program typically contained a monologue, one or two songs by a vocalist and two skits.[4]

The show went on hiatus after its March 27, 1952, episode. When it returned for its final season on February 15, 1953,[1] the tone and format of the show changed into the more conventional sitcom, with Young playing a bank teller.The show alternated weeks with Ken Murray's The Ken Murray Show under the title Time to Smile. In the last two weeks of the season, the format returned to its earlier style, but it was cancelled at the end of the season.[4] It ended on June 21, 1953.[1]

In 1951, The Alan Young Show received the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Variety Series, and Young won the Best Actor Emmy Award.[5]


Regulars on the first version included Polly Bergen (in her national TV debut),[1] Ben Wright, Joseph Kearns, Mabel Paige, Phillips Tead and the Lud Gluskin Orchestra.[6] Nina Bara was also a featured comedienne.[7] On the second version, Dawn Addams played Young's girlfriend and Melville Faber portraying his son.[citation needed] John Heistand was the announcer. Lud Gluskin directed the orchestra.[8]

Ralph Levy and Dick Linkroum produced and directed, and Joe Connolly and Bob Mosher produced and wrote for the program. Alan Dinehart and Edward Bernds also directed. Other writers included Young, Leo Solomon, Dave Schwartz, Nate Monaster, and Stanley Shapiro.[1]

Critical response

A review of the program's September 28, 1950, episode in the trade publication Billboard called Young "one of the most original performers in video".[8] However, the reviewer questioned questioned the use of two long skits when Young's work came across better in shorter segments.[8]



  1. ^ a b c d e f Hyatt, Wesley (September 11, 2015). Emmy Award Winning Nighttime Television Shows, 1948-2004. McFarland. pp. 26–29. ISBN 978-1-4766-0874-7. Retrieved January 20, 2023.
  2. ^ Tate, Marsha Ann; Houser, Earl (January 11, 2022). What America Watched: Television Favorites from the Cornfields to the Cosmos, 1960s-1990s. McFarland. ISBN 978-1-4766-4465-3. Retrieved January 23, 2023.
  3. ^ a b c Dunning, John (May 7, 1998). On the Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio. Oxford University Press. pp. 20–21. ISBN 978-0-19-984045-8. Retrieved January 23, 2023.
  4. ^ a b Brooks, Tim; Marsh, Earle F. (June 24, 2009). The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows, 1946-Present. Random House Publishing Group. p. 27. ISBN 978-0-307-48320-1. Retrieved January 23, 2023.
  5. ^ "Awards Search". Emmy Awards. Television Academy. Retrieved January 20, 2023.
  6. ^ Terrace, Vincent (2009). Encyclopedia of Television Shows, 1925 through 2007 (Volume 1 A-E). Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company, Inc. ISBN 978-0-7864-3305-6.
  7. ^ Staff, "Space Girl 'Tonga' to Appear At White-Barne Grand Opening," The San Bernardino Daily Sun, San Bernardino, California, Wednesday 17 November 1954, Volume LXI, Number 67, page 8.
  8. ^ a b c Bundy, June (October 7, 1950). "Alan Young Show". Billboard. p. 9. Retrieved January 23, 2023.