With Albert's departure, the show was renamed for Betty White, who became the host and producer of the show. The show continued to air on KTLA until the end of that year. In 1953, NBC had a weak television lineup, and executives began a search for new content. Hearing of White's popularity, executives flew to LA to audition her. Impressed with her performance, they agreed to air her show on NBC.
The show's national premier ewas on February 8, 1954. Each episode of the show features singing, interviewed guests, skits, and a children's segment. The show had positive reviews, with Billboard describing White as "attractive, charming and talented", and TV Guide said she had "...the disposition of a storybook heroine."
One of White's regular performers was the tap dancer Arthur Duncan. Duncan's role on White's show was his big break that launched his career. Duncan was also the first black person to be series regular on a talk show. However, as the show reached a national audience, television stations in the Jim Crow South threatened a boycott if Duncan remained on the show. White refused to fire him, saying "I’m sorry, but, you know, he stays. Live with it." She also gave Duncan more airtime. NBC responded by repeatedly changing the show's time slot. Duncan was unaware of the controversy until years later.
In addition to the controversy about Duncan, the show also struggled to attract sponsors. The show was quietly canceled on December 31, 1954. White starred in two other television shows of the same name, in 1958 and from 1977 to 1978.
an audio feed of random acts; interviews, previews, readings & more.