YOUNG TALENT TIME
Young Talent Time was produced by Lewis Young Productions for Network Ten. The compere was songwriter and former pop idol Johnny Young (1947– ), who also served as executive producer in partnership with Kevin Lewis of Festival Records.
The show debuted on 24 April 1971, featuring Rod Kirkham, Vicki Broughton, Philip Gould, Debbie (Debra) Byrne, Jamie Redfern and Jane Scali. Each week, three contestants were judged, with the winner progressing to the finals. The first winner was Johnny Lo Piccolo, who was to become known as John St Peeters.
Over the show’s 18 years, 40 children were members of the talent team, generally leaving the show at 16. Tina Arena, Dannii Minogue and Jamie Redfern have enjoyed international success, while Debbie Byrne and Rod Kirkham had local hits. Byrne and Philip Gould have also had successful stage careers.
In the early days, Johnny Farnham, Russell Morris, Normie Rowe and Ronnie Burns made numerous guest appearances. In later years, clowns and sight acts were used. At the end of each show, Young would croon a ballad version of the Beatles’ hit ‘All My Lovin’’.
Young Talent Time was adored by children, parents and grandparents alike, winning numerous Logies and, in 1982, a special Logie Award for Sustained Excellence. The program spawned numerous hit singles, 15 albums, outdoor concerts, swap cards, board games, toys and a documentary film.
The renamed YTT, hosted by former Australian Idol contestant Rob Mills, was revived for a single season by Ten in 2012.
REF: Information from John Young.