Show 37: Off to Join the Circus

Before there was Cirque du Soleil on DVD to watch at home, there were children’s phonograph records exploring countless variations on circus life. This edition of the Treasure Ivan program is a wild mix of life under the big top as imagined by American youngsters of yesteryear. First, we have selections from “Super Circus” a very popular weekend show on ABC television in 1949. The ringmaster was Claude Kirchner, but the ring-a-ding star of the program was Mary Hartline, a blonde beauty with a dazzling smile and a figure to match. She was known as “Television’s First Sex Symbol” and a quick peek at the picture below will tell you why.

The show also features Uncle Don’s “Day at the Circus,” a 12-minute recording of Don Carney and his inebriated look at clowns and balloons, with a little song for every aspect of the circus. Uncle Don was the preeminent children’s radio host of the 1930’s and 40’s. The story goes that when Don heard station WOR in New York was looking for a kiddie show he said, “Give me half an hour and I will have one ready.” And he did. Uncle Don also released a number of 78 rpm records for children. I’ve got a number of them in the Treasure Ivan library, including this circus-themed gem.

So have a listen to these rare story records, and lots more circus fun.

Bozo Sings
Pinto Colvig

Bozo Sings

Bozo Sings

Super Circus Band
Claude Kirchner & Mary Hartline

Claude Kirchner

Super Circus Sideshow
Claude Kirchner & Mary Hartline

Mary Hartline

Mary Hartline

Little Baby Brother

I Wanna Be a Dog
Barry Louis Polisar

Muffin in the Country

Muffin in the Country

Muffin the Country
Norman Rose

A Day at the Circus
Uncle Don Carney

Uncle Don Carney

Uncle Don Carney

Nellie the Elephant
Mandy Miller

Goodbye Cruel World
James Darren

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