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28 October 2014

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The Frost Report

The Frost Report

The Frost Report was a natural successor to That Was The Week That Was, with David Frost once more taking the reins of a live satirical show mixing monologues, sketches and music

Ronnie Barker and John Cleese

Bound together by Frost's script, written by Antony Jay (later of Yes, Minister), each week the programme concentrated on a single topic – "law", "food and drink", "medicine", "class" etc – using a full complement of satirical knives to fillet it as thoroughly as possible. 

The Frost Report succeeded in bringing together much of the talent that would command the heights of comedy for the next three decades.

Ronnie Barker, David Frost and Julie Felix

Musical satire was provided by folk singer Julie Felix and the brilliant Tom Lehrer, while the sketches and monologues were written by such luminaries as Marty Feldman, Keith Waterhouse, David Nobbs, Peter Tinniswood, Bill Oddie, Tim Brooke-Taylor, Barry Cryer, Frank Muir and Dennis Norden, not to mention all of those, bar Terry Gilliam, who would go on to become the Monty Python team. 

If this weren't enough, it was The Frost Report that united the Ronnies Corbett and Barker and it was in rehearsals that production staff and fellow cast members started referring to them as "The Two Ronnies".

Henson, Corbett, Cleese and Barker

The pair were to star, alongside John Cleese, in the programme's most famous sketch, in which the three would line up in order of height and comment on life – the 6'5" Cleese representing the ruling classes and looking down on the others while 5'1" Corbett represented the working class and ended up with "a pain in the back of my neck". 

The Frost Report ran for two series from 1966 to 1967, with a special edition winning the Golden Rose of Montreux.  Its style was to influence just about every satirical programme in the UK for the next 30 years.

Cast

David Frost
performer
Ronnie Corbett
performer
John Cleese
performer
Ronnie Barker
performer
Sheila Steafel
performer
Nicky Henson
performer

Crew

John Cleese
writer
Michael Palin
writer
Terry Jones
writer
Marty Feldman
writer
John Law
writer
Antony Jay
writer
Graham Chapman
writer
Keith Waterhouse
writer
Willis Hall
writer
David Nobbs
writer
Peter Tinniswood
writer
Frank Muir
writer
Denis Norden
writer
Eric Idle
writer
James Gilbert
producer


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