WDSU-TV ON AIR CELEBRITIES
Page 5



Bob and Jan Carr
Bob and Jan Carr entered the New Orleans broadcast community via WWL radio. When they came to WDSU-TV Bob and Jan Carr began hosting their own morning television show in 1961. Originating from the area around the pool on the roof of the Royal Orleans Hotel, "Second Cup" became an early "must see" program for New Orleans' viewers. FYI...the lovely Jan was formerely one of the fabulous Radio City Music Hall Rockettes. The couple presented young family features and fashion shows. Later, the Carrs joined Terry Flettrich, Wayne Mack and Al Shea on "Midday".

When WDSU-TV was sold by the Sterns to the Cosmos Broadcasting organization, the Carrs left the station. Jan continued to be seen on WLAE-TV and on the Cox Cable religious ecumenical access channel. In 1989, Jan hosted a "Midday" reunion on WLAE-TV in which the stars of the program were brought together with several studio crew members in an affectionately remembered program. The Carrs and Terry (Flettrich) Rohe still are the best of friends and maintain conatant contact although Terry now lives above the Mason-Dixon line in the cold, cold north...Maine...that is! The attractive couple still maintains a large following in the city who enjoy the Carrs on their radio programs.




Jingle Jangle Jingle....here comes Mister Bingle!

Bringing kids in New Orleans and the surrounding area messages from Kris Kringle in the 50s and 60s, Mr. Bingle was a children's favorite on Channel 6 around Christmas time. Mr. Bingle had his own daily after-school television show in which the snowman with the ice-cream cone hat and candy cane and his fellow players presented little stories for the kids. The Bingle marionette was manipulated by Oscar Eisentraut - (D), who also did the squeaky little high pitched Bingle voice. sometimes kids, visiting the WDSU-TV studios with their parents, would see Bingle getting ready for his show. They would run to the set and talk to the Bingle marionette. Oscar took the time to make sure Bingle talked to the kids. The kids loved the little Mr. Bingle on television and they loved the BIG Bingle on the front of the Maison Blanche building (now a hotel) on Canal Street. Other "voices" heard on the Bingle show were Al Shea, Jean Nair, and Rosie Correy. For more Mr. Bingle info see the Mr. Bingle Fans link at the bottom of this page.

WDSU-TV staffer Al Shea was the voice of Pete the penguin.

Mr. Bingle and Santa look over New Orleans' Canal Street from the Maison Blanche department store

On a sad note, when Oscar Eisentraut died penniless and with no apparant family in the city, he was buried in the Charity Hospital pauper's cemetary. There is no marker on his grave site....YET!

Bob Nelson


The Two Nelsons (not related) - Bob and Ed in the "Tip Top Space Ship"


Ed Nelson
Ed Nelson was a floor director at Channel 6....but not for long. He was very in local theater productions and while a floor director he also made many on-camera appearances on Channel 6. He played an assistant to Bob Nelson (Captain Vision...NOT Captain VIDEO) aboard the "Tip Top Space Ship" Ed soon made the actor's trek to the big time and became one of the stars of a most popular television program. Ed played the part of Dr. Rossi on the network drama "Peyton Place". He was also seen in several feature movies. Ed is now retired and living in Mississippi.

Al Shea
Al entered the world of television while still in high school. He appeared on a show , "Teen Timers", that originated from the Hibernia studio of the fledgeling WDSU-TV. He became a WDSU-TV staffer in 1955. He was one of the "Midday" producers and appeared regularly on the show as the Midday theater critic. He also replaced Ed Nelson on the Tip-Top Space Ship television program. Ed Nelson left to try his luck in Hollywood. Al played the part of "Sparky" on the show. Later, Shea became "Deputy Oops" on his own program, "Adventures in Fun" in 1960. He was delighted to call Mr. Bingle "friend" and played "Penguin Pete", Bingle's sidekick. Mr. Shea is still a respected theater critic in the city. The Times-Picayune "TV Focus" called him "Mr. Showbiz". At this time, Al appears on the WYES-TV rogram "Steppin' Out."
Al Shea - Theater Critic


Mr. and Mrs. John Gary
"His voice must have been manufactured by Wurlitzer" was a comment referring to the beautiful singing tones of John Gary. In the early days of the WDSU-TV Royal Street studios,John was a singer appearing on the "Midday" program. He was paid the wonderful wage of $40/week for his efforts. John's popularity grew quickly. His rendition of the delightful songs "Yellow Bird" and "Malaguenia" brought him national attention. He was later a featured performer in the Blue Room of the Roosevel (Fairmont) Hotel in New Orleans. The newspaper picture (Times-Picayune Dixie Roto) of Dec 8, 1968 below shows one of his performances in the Blue Room, when John went into the audience and brought one of the guests, Rita Yacich, on to the showroom stage and sang his whole show to her.

While still appearing on "Midday" and "Tonight with Mel", John set the world record for staying underwater using diving equipment that he designed. He accomplished the feat in the salt water pool of the New Orleans Athletic Club onn Rampart Street. Some of his WDSU-TV friends including Mike Lala and Paul Yacich, assisted in John in passing the time underwater by playing chess with him in the depths of the N. O. A. C. pool. John also invented an underwater personal propulsion unit, the Aqua-Peller, that was accepted for use by the U. S. Navy. He also aided the pioneers of the U. S. space program in nderwater experiments. John was also an avid sportsman and had also been ranked among the top archers of America.

John later left New Orleans to enter the world of big time entertainment. His appearance at Hollywood's Coconut Grove brought him $12,000 a week, a slight improvement over his "Midday" salary. At a meeting in Hollywood with Paul Yacich and Ernie Chambers, one of the Smothers Brothers producers, it was arranged for John to star in a summer replacement TV series.

While still a young man, John was diagnosed with cancer. That wonderful voice is with us no longer, but John Gary lives in the hearts of the guys and gals of early WDSU-TV.

Charlie Matkin

Charlie was on the air in Mobile, Alabama before he came to New Orleans. In the Crescent City he was on the air at WWOM, WBYU and WWL before joining WDSU radio. Matkin also loved singing and theater work. When John Gary left New Orleans for the greener pastures of Hollywood, Charlie replaced him as a singer on the Ch.6 "Midday" program and also appeared on Mel Leavitt's "Tonight With Mel." Charlie married Jean Doherty, a mode and the first weather girl in New Orleans ("The Weather With Jean" - WWL-TV). In later years they both left broadcasting to become hotel owners (The Old World Inn - New Orleans) but Charlie had broadcasting in his blood and had to maintain a connrction with the broadcast community. He became one of the founders and president of NORT, the New Orleans Radio Theatre. The group produced old time radio program re-creations. Charlie also teamed up with retired television Producer/ Director, Paul Yacich, in hosting the radio program "Seems Like Old Times." The program featured old time radio program excerpts.

Matkin was also one of the victims...er...rather, patients of the good doctor shown in picture below.
Dr. Momus Alexander Morgus
This handsome, debonair television celebrity was the host of the Saturday night spooky time. Dr. Morgus originally appeared on WWL-TV in New Orleans Oct. 31, 1959. In the 1965, the "master" brought his old ice house laboratory and his assistant, the ever-silent yet hilarious Chopsley, to Channel 6. where he coerced Director Paul Yacich to join him as part of M.A.M.I., the Momus Alexander Morgus Institute. The "Morgus Presents" programs were extremely popular and were responsible, as some researchers point out, for a significant increase in the sale of pizzas on Saturday night. Many VIPs, both local and national, were the victims...er..that is..the patients of the good doctor. The "Morgus Presents" programs continued on Channel 6 until 1971. In 1985, Momus and Yacich produced 50 "Morgus Present" shows for syndication. All of the shows were produced in the Royal Street WDSU-TV studios. The programs ran twice each on WPIX-TV in New York as well as several other stations nationwide. Technical Director David Landry and Assistant Directors Reggie Hendry and Earl Allen did their best to assist Director Yacich and the studio technicians in maintaining their sanity. They were sucessful with the technicians.

Dr. Morgus whispers to Rita Yacich


A typical Morgusectomy


Tommy George - The silent gentle giant! - (D)
Tommy George was a deputy sheriff in St. Bernard Parish. He was assigned to a motorcycle unit. Tommy suffered a serious leg injury when an automobile ran into his motorcycle. He lived in constant pain and had to wear a heavy metal brace on his leg. He was told that the only way that his pain would be relieved was through amputation of the injured leg. Tommy decided to live with the battered leg and the terrible pain.
For a while, Tommy was an announcer at WVUE, Ch. 8 in New Orleans. He and Sid Noel were good friends and Sid came to recognize Tommy' superb silent comedy timing. He was the perfect Chopsley. When one of the "Morgus Presents" "victims" asked Chopsley what was his name, Tommy wrote on the laboratory blackboard: "Chopsley You Idiot." Only a true Chopsley fan understands the full implications of that signature. None of his silent comedy was scripted. He constantly "broke up" the television studio crews. He was a riot. He was a comedy genius. He was the gentle giant. He was.... CHOPSLEY!

While he was a very big man, he was extremely gentle and friendly with everybody. Even as a policeman, his friendly warmth was not expected by those who met the big cop under conditions where he was doing his law enforcement duty. Tommy is no longer with us but the broadcast community will always remember him as "....that friendly, silent, gentle giant."

GO TO WDSU-TV ON AIR Page 6


RETURN TO WDSU-TV ON AIR Page 4

GO TO WDSU-TV ON AIR Page 1
GO TO WDSU-TV ON AIR Page 2
GO TO WDSU-TV ON AIR Page 3
GO TO WDSU-TV ON AIR Page 7

GO TO WDSU-TV PERSONNEL Page 1
GO TO WDSU-TV PERSONNEL Page 2

GO TO WDSU-TV MEMBERS OF THE GNOBA HALL OF FAME

GO TO WDSU Page 1
GO TO WDSU Page 2
GO TO WDSU Page 3
GO TO WDSU Page 4


RETURN TO BROADCAST ARTS MUSEUM

For more New Orleans radio and television memories:
GO TO "NEW ORLEANS RADIO AND TV SHRINE"

FOR MR. BINGLE FANS - GO TO mrbinglefans.com