It is over 60 years since the world-famous variety show The Good Old Days first aired on the BBC from Leeds’ City Varieties Music Hall. It was a huge success and ran for 30 years, with audiences dressing up in Victorian garb and having a good old-fashioned knees-up. Big name stars such as Les Dawson, Barbara Windsor, Jimmy Tarbuck, Val Doonican and Barry Cryer helped the show put Leeds on the world map. The City Varieties still hosts The Good Old Days and next week it returns to start its four-weekend run, with a host of acts to recreate the legendary Music Hall experience.
Johnny Dennis is the long-standing Chairman who introduces every show, a role he has undertaken since 1988. “Leeds is my second home,” says the Londoner. “It continues to be a real privilege to perform at the City Varieties and keep the flame of Music Hall alive. We have put together a wonderful group of people who are all excellent at what they do – we have some real talent on that stage.” Johnny took part in several of the BBC programmes as one of Barney’s Players who performed at the beginning and end of every show.
Headlining the current run will be comedian Roy Hudd, violinist Gary Lovini, tenor Jonathan Ansell and singer Jan Hunt and comedy act Peter John. Other acts will include aerial silks act Desiree Kongerod, unicyclist and juggler Goronwy Thom and ukulele player Wendy King.
The variety show is at the City Varieties every Friday at 7pm and Saturday at 2pm & 7pm from Friday 3 to Saturday 25 October. For more information and to book tickets visit cityvarieties.co.uk or call box office on 0113 243 0808.