Network: CTV Television Network
Broadcast Run: 1967 to 1977
Broadcast Medium: Television
Set in a studio recreation of a British pub, Pig and Whistle was an example of the kind of musical programming that CTV did so well for many years. It starred British actor/singer John Hewer as Mine Host of an inn that featured resident singers, dancers and an orchestra, plus guests like Vera Lynn, Tommy Trinder and Dickie Valentine from the Old Country, with members of the public forming the invited audience at tables round the room.
Regulars in addition to John Hewer included the Carlton Showband with pianist Ken Stanley, singer Kay Turner, Scottish comedian Billy Meek and choreographer Roland’s lively dance team. The half-hour show was conceived, produced and directed by John Johnson for Glen-Warren Productions at CFTO-TV, Toronto, and entered the CTV schedule at 9:30pm on Tuesdays in 1967, enjoying a ten-year run to the end of the 1977 season.
In November 2006, Canada’s Audio Visual Preservation Trust recognized Pig & Whistle with a MasterWorks Award, citing the program as “Canadian commercial television’s first homegrown hit”, and praising its “leather-lunged host John Hewer”.
Written by Pip Wedge – April, 2002