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Talent Shows in Old Time Radio

After all the amateurs had performed, the Master of Ceremonies would ask the audience to select a winner. The "winner" may not have been the most talented, as the audience would select who they liked the best, and sympathy could mean as much as talent.  You won't want to miss these rare recordings from "who has talent" of radio yesteryear.

Arthur Godfrey Collection
Godfrey's conversational style made his show seem like a friend talking to listeners directly.  Godfrey would have regular talents, "non-stars" come on to the show and showcase their talent. At the end of the show, the audience and Arthur would serve as the judges. If they liked any of the talents, they would ask them to come back to the next show and compete against the next influx of talent.

Major Bowes
Major Bowes Amateur Hour
Thousands from all over the country flocked to join this Gong-style Talent Show.  Contestants were given $10 and an all-you-can-eat pass to a cafeteria across the street from the studio. Each contestant had to sign a contract stating that they would not use Bowes name to gain them further appearances. If they did happen to get work as a result of being on his show, they were to pay Bowes 15% of their profits.

Rudy Vallee
Rudy Vallee Show
Listen to radio's bad boy on the block variety hour. This talent scout program made stars such as Alice Faye, Milton Berle, Joe Penner, Bergen & McCarthy, and even the Aldrich Family.  Talent scout, slave driver, saxophone player, angry punch-in-the-facer – our man, Rudy Vallee.

Talent Shows
Old Time Radio Talent Shows
Do you have what it takes to be a Star?
If you do well enough on an Amateur Talent Show, and you might get your big break!

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