First TV Interview
The first known TV interview, held on April 29 1936, was more of a technical experiment or demonstration than a true television event – the BBC did not begin broadcasting until November that same year. The equipment was made by Baird , and the historic moment did not as might be expected occur in the capital, but in Southampton at the Ideal Home Exhibition held there that year.
Born in Buffalo New York in 1894 Peggy O’Neil was a world star of her day, appearing in musical comedies in her own country, France and England, where eventually she made her home, dying in the city in 1960. Her performances on the stage of the Savoy Theatre wowed the post-WWI crowds, and a popular ballad was written about her with the immortal lines Sweet personality, Full of rascality, That’s Peggy O’Neil.
This being long before such things were captured for posterity on film or tape no record remains of Miss O’Neil’s words of wisdom, and it is not clear who conducted the interview. But at least we have good photographic evidence of her beauty, rather wonderful images of her to be found in the National Portrait Gallery in London – one in particular making it very easy to understand why she was such a hit – her eyes indeed full of that fabled and very alluring rascality.
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