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In 1956 the BBC held a competition during the year, the first Festival Of British Popular Songs. The final was staged on 22nd October, 1956. from the King's Theatre in Hammersmith, London. The programme was presented by Wilfrid Thomas.

The winning song was Everybody Falls In Love With Someone, sung by Dennis Lotis and composed by Peter Hart and Norman Newell. (Recorded by Dickie Henderson & Matt Monro). Second placed song was Little Ship sung by Shirley Abicair and composed by Terry & Irene Roper. (Recorded by Julie Dawn and Jackie Lee).

There were never any plans for the winning song to represent the United Kingdom in the inaugural Eurovision Song Contest, as that competition had been held earlier in the year on Thursday 24th May 1956. However, it was the Festival Of British Popular Songs format that would be used in 1957 to decide the United Kingdom's first ever entry into the Eurovision Song Contest.

Transmission Date (Final):Monday 22nd October 1956
Channel:BBC Television
Time:21.15-22.15
Venue (Final):King's Theatre
Hammersmith
London

Presenter:

Wilfrid Thomas
Musical Director:
George Melachrino
Orchestra:The Concert Orchestra
Backing Vocals:The George Mitchell Singers
Festival Music Directors:Eric Robinson
Stanley Black

Producer:

Francis Essex
Designer:Richard Henry

Voting:

Viewers throughout the country were heard selecting each heat's winning entry

Winning Song:

Everybody Falls In Love With Someone
Dennis Lotis
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Participants

Heat:Date:Performers:Musical Directors:Musicians:
01Monday 7th May 1956
21.15-22.00
Dennis Hale
Shirley Abicair
The Bill McGuffie Quartet
Bruce Trent
The Kentones
Alma Cogab
Ronnie Hilton
Kenny Baker
Vanessa Lee
Eric Robinson
Bill McGuffie
The Bill McGuffie Quartet
The Concert Orchestra
The George Mitchell Singers
02Monday 4th June 1956
21.45-22.30
The Keynotes
Dennis Lotis
Ronnie Carroll
Semprini

Marion Ryan
Johnston Brothers
Pamela Charles
Laurie Payne
Anne Shelton
Pamela Charles & Laurie Payne
Semprini
Stanley Black
The Concert Orchestra
The George Mitchell Singers
03Monday 2nd July 1956
21.00-21.45
The Coronets
Benny Lee Qunintet
Carole Carr
Max Jaffa

Joan Bramhall
The Coronets
Billie Antthony
John Hanson & Joan Bramhall
John Hanson
George Melachrino
Max Jaffa
The Concert Orchestra
The George Mitchell Singers
04Monday 30th July 1956
21.15-22.00
The George Mitchell Singers
The Four Grads
Dora Bryan
Johnny Brandon
The Malcolm Lockyer Quartet
Kathie Kay
The Bill O'Connor Quartet
Doreen Duke
Alan Page
Eric Robinson
Malcolm Lockyer
The Concert Orchestra
The George Mitchell Singers
05Monday 27th August 1956
21.15-22.00
The Kentones
Ormonde Douglas
Dennis Hale
Petula Clark
Laurie Payne & Roxy Brown
Janie Marden
The Bill McGuffie Quartet
The George Mitchell Singers
Janie Marden & Ivan Bravard
The Concert Orchestra
Stanley Black
Bill McGuffie
The Concert Orchestra
The George Mitchell Singers
06Monday 24th September 1956
21.15-22.00
The Coronets
Lester Ferguson
Jean Campbell
Anne Shelton
Frank Weir
Tony Brent
Lee Lawrence
Alma Warren
Anne Shelton
George Melachrino
Frank Weir
The Frank Weir Quartet
The Concert Orchestra
The George Mitchell Singers
FINALMonday 22nd October 1956
21.15-22.15
The Keynotes
Dennis Lotis

Ronnie Carroll
Semprini
Shirley Abicair
The Bill McGuffie Quartet
Laurie Payne
Petula Clark
Jean Campbell
Lester Ferguson
Carole Carr
Max Jaffa
Eric Robinson
Stanley Black
George Melachrino
Semprini
Bill McGuffie
Max Jaffa
The Concert Orchestra
TheGeorge Mitchell Singers

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At The Eurovision Song Contest 1956

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The United Kingdom was not represented at the inaugural Eurovision Song Contest, which took place at Teatro Kursaal in Lugano, Switzerland on Thursday 24th May 1956 beginning at 20.00 local time (21.00 UK time).

BBC Television did show part of the event live from 21.45-22.30 with commentary by Wilfrid Thomas.