Eva TURNER (1892-1990)

Eva Turner This Is Your Life

programme details...

  • Edition No: 101
  • Subject No: 101
  • Broadcast live: Mon 14 Sep 1959
  • Broadcast time: 7.30-8.05pm
  • Venue: BBC Television Theatre
  • Series: 5
  • Edition: 3

on the guest list...

  • Walter Midgley
  • Grace Tanner
  • Marie Burke
  • Gladys Parr
  • Vincenzo Bellezza
  • Ivor Owen
  • Amy Shuard
  • Giovanni Martinelli
  • Filmed tributes:
  • John Barbirolli
  • Thomas Beecham
  • George Ivens
  • Dr George Lynn Cross
  • Judy Bounds Coleman
  • Mary Evelyn West
  • Joseph Benton
  • Spencer Norton
  • Bud Wilkinson
  • Leonard Haug

production team...

  • names above in bold indicate subjects of This Is Your Life
related pages...

Eva Turner

second tribute

Classical Life

a symphony of subjects

Life Second Time Around

surprised again!

John Barbirolli

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Photographs of Eva Turner This Is Your Life

Eva Turner's biography

Linda Esther Gray recalls this edition of This Is Your Life in her book, Dame Eva Turner, A Life on the High Cs...

One of the first surprises which greeted Eva Turner on returning home to London was Eamonn Andrews clutching her This Is Your Life book. She seemed to enjoy every minute of the television occasion and shared enormous gales of laughter with her longest, dearest friend Gladys Parr. They both looked a million dollars, enormously well dressed and with a poise and command of body language and gestures which only the stage could have given them. Their love for each other was obvious as they shared laughter about times past and the money they had tried to save saying that they had lived mostly on hope. Gladys told the audience: 'Eva practiced and practiced and practiced and learned lots of principal parts in case someone happened to erhemm fall down and break their hhmm necks! (last word was barely audible followed by laughter.) Her aim was to get herself out of the chorus and in a very short time succeed.'

Walter Midgley said she was not to worry about her meal that evening as he had brought her favourite supper with him, fish and chips. A beautiful Amy Shuard said how much she owed to the teaching of Miss Turner and knelt at her side, in a collective photo call at the end, as if she was Kundry about to wash Parsifal's feet and with a reverence of which a disciple from the Bible would have been proud. Eva Turner in her turn paid huge spontaneous tribute to Amy's Turandot.

Sir Thomas Beecham and Sir John Barbirolli paid tribute to her as one of the greatest British artists; Vincenzo Bellezza came from Italy, bringing affectionate greetings from the country which had claimed her as a daughter-in-art, and she embraced him warmly, calling him Maestro and conversing immediately with him in Italian. George Ivens sent warm greetings from Canada and Jo Benton spoke to her from Oklahoma while Martinelli greeted his Aida with the impetuous embrace of Radames from times past.

Series 5 subjects

Evelyn Laye | Donald Caskie | Eva Turner | Billy Butlin | James Slater | Edmund Arbuthnott | Louis Langford | O P Jones
Richard Hearne | Francoise Rigby | John Barclay | Thomas Drake | William Merrilees | John Lord | Russ Conway | Stanley Bishop
Leonard Stanmore | Arthur Askey | Robert Oldfield | Alicia Markova | Frederic Morena | Hilda Rowcliffe | Thomas Salmon
Harry Welchman | Harry Webb | Nat Gonella | David Barclay | Richard Todd | Thomas Bodkin | Gracie Fields | Michael Ansell