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Over two, hour-long shows, Les Dawson Forever calls upon family, friends and extraordinary, previously unseen and revealing footage to tell the story of one of British TV's greatest comedians. As the king of the one liner, ace piano player, and a friend to mothers-in-law everywhere, the show charts Les Dawson's incredible journey from the back streets of Manchester to millions of our living rooms.

Genres:
Station: ITV3 (GB)
Rating: 0/10 from 0 users
Status: Ended
Start: 2016-12-21

Les Dawson Forever Air Dates


S01E01 - Episode 1 Air Date: 21 December 2016 21:00 -

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In this first show Les' youngest daughter Charlotte Dawson, who was only 18 months old when her dad passed away in 1993, meets up with Opportunity Knocks director Royston Mayoh to hear how an audition for the talent contest would change her father's life forever.

Charlotte listens to a recently discovered tape recording of her father taken from The Blackpool Show in 1967 and believed to be the oldest surviving audio of his act.

The programme also features Les' comedy partner Roy Barraclough reminiscing about how the pair's famous characters Cissie and Ada came to life after a producer overheard them mucking about on the studio floor between takes in recording. Although Les was keen to try out the characters on television, Roy was not so sure, saying "I don't think the public are ready to watch two fat men in frocks"!

Roy confides how he and Les would try their utmost to make each other laugh during the Cissie and Ada sketches. Les would often throw in ad-libbed funny names while Roy would try and crack up his comedy partner with imaginatively named confectionery.

Meanwhile comedian and writer Barry Cryer returns to Yorkshire Television, the home of filming for Sez Les - Les Dawson's first TV series - where he reunites with Don Clayton and John Heaton who worked alongside Les on the studio floor. The memories from over 40 years ago come flooding back as the former team look through personal memorablia that Les kept from his time fronting the show.

The show also pays homage to a familiar and well-loved part of Les' routine - off key piano playing. Rick Wakeman, a friend of Les', reveals the complexities of playing the piano off key for laughs and demonstrates why Les was such a genius.

Les Dawson Forever features interviews with Les' wife Tracy Dawson, daughter Charlotte, co-star Roy Barraclough and friends and fans including Ken Dodd, Johnny Vegas, Johnny Ball and writer Andy Hamilton.


S01E02 - Episode 2 Air Date: 22 December 2016 21:00 -

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In this second show, former Sez Les' director David Mallet watches footage from tapes, recorded at Yorkshire Television's studios in Leeds, that have lain untouched for nearly 50 years. The tapes feature clips that have never been seen before on television and give a rare insight into Les Dawson the man, as well as the performer, showing the comedian relaxing in between takes on the Sez Les studio floor.

Elsewhere in the documentary members of the dance troupe the Roly Polys reunite on stage to reminisce about working alongside Les. They watch back performances from their shows together and fondly remember Les' warmth, kindness and good humour. Before they part company the girls can't resist one final song and dance on stage...

The show also tells the story of how Les Dawson reinvented himself in the eyes of the public by becoming the new presenter of Blankety Blank, taking on the baton from Terry Wogan. Although at the time it was a surprising choice by the BBC, Johnny Vegas calls it ‘a landmark television moment'.

Actress Lorraine Chase, a regular on Blankety Blank, meets up with the show's producer Stanley Appel and props buyer Bobby Warans for the first time in 20 years to remember the laughs they shared with Les on the show.

The documentary also features Les' wife Tracy reuniting with karaoke superfan Penny Morgan who in 1993 was given the opportunity to perform the duet of a lifetime on Cilla Black's Surprise Surprise. Their performance of Sonny and Cher's I Got You Babe was Les' last TV appearance, shown after his death, and left Cilla and the studio audience in tears of laughter. Les' wife Tracy says that from all her husband's hilarious comedy career, it's this clip of Les and Penny's performance together that is her favourite.

Les Dawson Forever also features interviews with Les' daughter Charlotte Dawson and friends and fans including Ken Dodd, Johnny Vegas, Vicki Michelle, Rick Wakeman, Johnny Ball and Andy Hamilton.



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