They had us, babe, this endearingly mismatched power couple who dished out a mix of music and jokes, frequently the shimmering Cher's at the expense of spouse Sonny, whose somewhat goofy persona was a charming foil for her flash. With guests like Jerry Lee Lewis and the Supremes, they soared until their 1974 divorce ended the show. Sonny then hosted 'The Sonny Comedy Revue' and she starred in 'Cher,' and they reunited professionally in '77 for 'The Sonny and Cher Show.'
Burrows chatted with guests, performed in skits and sang novelty tunes on a 1950 variety series that predated his success as a writer (and sometime director) of classic Broadway musicals, including 'Guys and Dolls' and 'How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.'
One of the medium's most beloved and eclectic cultural showcases, this Alistair Cooke-hosted series spanned the arts, covering (among other fields) plays, documentaries, operas, Broadway musicals, ballets and symphonies. Included were pieces based on the works of Hemingway, Steinbeck, Shaw, Chekhov, Eliot and Thurber; a production of 'King Lear' starring Orson Welles; a TV-debut appearance by Leonard Bernstein; and Jacques Cousteau's undersea adventures, his first on network television.
Judy Garland's show, like the star herself, had a troubled history, and it suffered format changes and backstage turmoil, none of which kept it from copping several Emmy nominations. Notable changes involved a switch in executive producers from George Schlatter to Norman Jewison. Garland, though, was in great voice, and there were wonderful guest shots by her daughter Liza Minnelli, Mickey Rooney, Barbra Streisand, Ethel Merman, Danny Kaye and Ray Bolger (the scarecrow from 'The Wizard of Oz').