Image of the Day: Shooting Butternut Square
(CBC Still Photo Collection)
This picture provides a behind-the-scenes look at the filming of Butternut Square
The show starred Ernie Coombs, who played Mr. Dressup, before the character would go on to become one of the best known-names in children's programming.
Coombs first came to Canada in 1963 to work for the CBC on a precursor to PBS's Mr. Rogers' Neighbourhood
, a show called Misterogers
, featuring fellow American Fred Rogers. Rogers soon acquired the rights for his show from CBC and moved its production to the U.S., but Coombs stayed in Canada to work on Butternut Square
Sandra Cohen played Sandy on the show. Sandy would meet with Mr. Dressup in the town square, Butternut Square.
The two met with their friends and led viewers through games, musical numbers and dances aimed at teaching children, through participation, to become more aware of their world and themselves.
The puppet characters Casey and Finnegan were also introduced on the show.
But the program, which popular with young children, was burdened with high-production costs. It was cancelled in February 1967.
Coombs and puppeteer Judith Lawrence proposed a scaled-down show. CBC agreed and Coombs was given his own show later that same year. On it Mr. Dressup, Casey and Finnegan continued to flourish. Mr. Dressup
remained extremely popular with Canadian children until Coombs retired and CBC-TV stopped producing the show in 1996.
Posted on Nov 1, 2011 6:00:00 AM