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The Museum Presents Beyond the Fringe

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Los Angeles, CA and New York, NYThe Museum of Television & Radio will screen the U.S. premiere of the complete 1964 gala farewell performance of Beyond the Fringe from February 11 to March 31, 2005. This groundbreaking satirical revue was first mounted at the Edinburgh Festival in 1960 and subsequently played in London's West End and on Broadway. Beyond the Fringe kicked off the 1960s satire boom (directly influencing such television shows as That Was the Week That Was and Monty Python's Flying Circus) and jump-started the careers of all four of its young stars: Alan Bennett, Peter Cook, Jonathan Miller, and Dudley Moore. This final performance was telecast in Great Britain—in a truncated, one-hour version on BBC2—but has never been released commercially.  Sketches include "Man Bites God" (a takeoff on Sunday morning religious programs), "Aftermyth of War" (an anthology of British wartime clichés), "Civil War" (a lecture by civil defense workers), "Real Class" (a comparison of social classes), and "One Leg Too Few" (with Dudley Moore as a one-legged man who auditions in earnest for the role of Tarzan), plus parodies of the music of Benjamin Britten and Kurt Weill.

Beyond the Fringe will screen in New York Tuesdays to Sundays at 12:30 p.m. and Thursday evenings at 6:00 p.m. and in Los Angeles Wednesdays to Sundays at 12:30 p.m. This program is part of the Museum's recent acquisition of television shows produced by the late Alexander Cohen, who brought Beyond the Fringe to Broadway in 1962.

The Museum of Television & Radio, with locations in New York and Los Angeles, was founded by William S. Paley to collect and preserve television and radio programs and advertisements and to make them available to the public. Since opening in 1976, the Museum has organized exhibitions, screening and listening series, seminars, and education classes to showcase its preeminent collection of over 100,000 television and radio programs and advertisements. Programs in the Museum’s collection are selected for their artistic, cultural, and historic significance.

The Museum of Television & Radio in New York, located at 25 West 52 Street in Manhattan, is open Tuesdays through Sundays from noon to 6:00 p.m. and until 8:00 p.m. on Thursdays. The Museum of Television & Radio in California, located at 465 North Beverly Drive in Beverly Hills, is open Wednesdays through Sundays from noon to 5:00 p.m. Both Museums are closed on New Year's Day, Independence Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. Suggested contribution: Members free; $10.00 for adults; $8.00 for senior citizens and students; and $5.00 for children under fourteen. Admission is free in Los Angeles. The public areas in both Museums are accessible to wheelchairs, and assisted listening devices are available. Programs are subject to change. You may call the Museum in New York at (212) 621-6800 or in Los Angeles at (310) 786-1000. Visit the Museum’s website at