I’ve been listening to varied broadcasts of “The Mario Lanza Show” on old-time radio on and off for some time. In fact, it is by way of these shows that I know anything about the actor/singer at all not having seen any of his films, including the mega-hit THE GREAT CARUSO directed by Richard Thorpe in 1951. While I’m not a fan of opera, I enjoy these radio shows immensely probably because Lanza sings popular tunes and standards as well as well-known opera songs. In any case, I’m sharing a couple of these shows here hoping you’ll like them in tribute to Mario Lanza on the anniversary of his death at the far-too-young age of 38 on October 7, 1959.
“The Mario Lanza Show” aired from 1951 to 1952 and was just one of the versions, if you will of the “The Coca Cola Program,” as the variety/music show was originally titled since its 1929 debut. Not surprisingly, Coca Cola was a top sponsor of radio programming since the medium became popular and would change the “gist” and star of this particular show every year to take advantage of the latest popular stars. In the timeline of headliners, “The Mario Lanza Show” was preceded by “The Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy Show” and followed by “Coke Time with Eddie Fisher,” which ended the run of the series. Have fun listening to these, they’re great.
Enjoy “The Mario Lanza Show”
“The Mario Lanza Show” program 1
“The Mario Lanza Show” program 26 with guest, Rosemary Clooney
Armed Forces Radio Hollywood Bowl Series with Lionel Barrymore and Mario Lanza:
“I sing each word as though it were my last on earth.”