CTV Television Network

Story Theatre

Network: CTV Television Network

Broadcast Run: 1971 to 1972

Broadcast Medium: Television

Paul Sills’ Story Theatre was a major Broadway hit which featured re-creations of fairy tales and fables from the Aesop and Grimm lexicons. Its transfer to the small screen was extremely well done, with stellar performances by a repertory company, which included such names as Melinda Dillon, Valerie Harper, Avery Schreiber, Hamilton Camp, Bob Dishy, Maja Ardal, Alan Alda, Richard Libertini and Peter Bonerz.  The series was sensitively directed by Jorn Winther.

With a splendidly colorful horse-drawn wagon as transportation, the troupe ostensibly travelled the countryside to perform in towns and villages. The half-hour series was in fact shot in the studios of CTV’s Vancouver affiliate BCTV, and played one year in prime time on the network, during the 1971-72 season on Sundays at 7:00pm. It was unfortunately ‘too good for tv’ and drew only a small but discerning audience, insufficient to generate the revenues CTV needed to achieve from its limited number of hours of network reserve time. The program developed a cult following, whose adherents were pleased when repeats were seen on Saturday mornings at 11:30am in 1972-73, and again on Saturdays at 10am in 1974-75.

Pip Wedge   2005