Jul 1974 – Series Three Auditions

Just three weeks after the end of series two, Les Cocks announced the auditions for the next series would be by appointment only and advertised the process for applicants to follow in The Stage.  The advert stated;

ATV will shortly be setting up auditions for the new season of New Faces.  

Artistes new to network television are cordially invited to write for an audition at one of the centres covering their area.  Auditions will be held throughout the country and will continue after the series has recommenced.

It may be some weeks before applications are answered but an appointment card will follow notifying artistes of the place, date and time of their audition.

Applications, stating name and address, type of act, union membership (if any) and age if under 16, should be addressed to:

Les Cocks, P.O. Box 55, 150 Edmund Street, Birmingham 3.

Series three would start on the 21 September 1974, just 77 days after the final of series two was broadcast, and would run for a mammoth nine months with the Grand Final scheduled to be held on the 27 July 1975 and to be broadcast from the London Palladium with the overall winner guaranteed a booking for a season in Las Vegas.

Host Derek Hobson returned for the first seven shows, and some of the entertainers from previous New Faces shows were set to compare other shows.  Every eight weeks there was a winners programme with some of those programmes being recorded away from the ATV studios.

In addition to the winners’ shows there were chances for those who appeared in this series to pick up bookings in cabaret on cruise liners, at holiday camps, night clubs, in pantomime and other programmes. They also were given the advantage of being offered recording contracts. At the end of the long third season run there was also a touring stage show made up of some of the best acts from the series.

There were some other changes to the format of the show with female judges being dropped from the judges panel. Les Cocks explained that ‘Generally women are not as popular as men. Women viewers in particular don’t seem to like women as judges.’  The decision angered some former judges with Majorie Proops claiming, ‘This is discrimination indeed. If men are taking it on themselves to say how good we are, it becomes silly.’  Mary Whitehouse was quoted as saying, ‘It certainly sounds an odd decision in this day of women’s lib.’  However, former judge, Barbara Kelly agreed with the decision, claiming, ‘Women’s voices can be difficult to take over the air. If women do not do a proper job in front of an audience, then they shouldn’t be there.’

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