Humming Bee





Judge: Walton O'Donnell (1938-9)

Pianist: Frederick Stone (1938-9)


BBC Northern Ireland for BBC Regional Programme, 22 December 1938 and 30 April 1939

BBC Home Service, 9 January 1943


From an age when all the "firsts" were up for grabs, the BBC proudly present the first game show with a punning title. One for the annals, certainly.

Contestants were simply given the title of a song and asked to hum it. In what we can only assume was a response to conduct unbecoming of the national broadcaster, the second contest had some new rules. According to the Radio Times, "no 'tra-la-la' business is allowed, and it is forbidden for competitors to beat time with their hands". Quite right too.


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