Telethon was a 24-hour live television spectacular aimed at securing donations from viewers for a charitable cause. The first, in 1975, launched the second channel (TV2) and raised over half a million dollars for St John's Ambulance. By 1981 Telethon had hit the $5 million mark. Along with willing local celebrities, volunteers and a receptive public, it attracted overseas stars: Basil Brush, Entertainment Tonight's Leeza Gibbons and Coronation Street's Christopher Quinton (who famously got together after the 1988 show). "Thank you very much for your kind donation!"
Telethon was a widely popular 24-hour live television spectacular aimed at securing donations from viewers for a charitable cause. The feel-good vibe of Telethon was infectious, appealing to both adults, kids (who were allowed to stay up in front of the telly) and willing celebs. This selection covers highlights from the 1981 Wellington Telethon (for International Year of the Disabled). Bob Parker, Selwyn Toogood, Ian Johnstone and host Peter Sinclair get goofy amongst smurfs, bagpipes, and talking belly-buttons. "Thank you very much for your kind donation!"
Split Enz are here caught at a pivotal moment in their career. They're just back from their first trip to Australia where they've recorded their critically acclaimed debut album Mental Notes - but it is yet to be released in New Zealand where they've taken time out from a national tour to appear on the inaugural Telethon. Within nine months they will be in England on their way to becoming NZ's most successful rock'n'roll export to date. Costumes are the "zootsuits" designed by Noel Crombie who contents himself with being a lurking presence in pale blue.