The popular music series, Live By Request, ran on A&E for eight years before it went off the air. PBS decided recently to revive the show as a national pledge drive special that was broadcast on November 7, 2009 featuring John Fogerty and his band.
The two hour show aired live nationwide so viewers were able to call in to speak to Fogerty and request their favorite song to be played. They could also email, Twitter and Skype their requests.
The MC for the evening was Mark Goodman, one of the original VJs on MTV in the 80’s. The show was the first fully national pledge drive by PBS. The network has traditionally aired pledge drives produced by local stations, with the shows later being picked up and shown in other markets by affiliates.
Live By Request was created by Tony Bennett, who conceived the show’s concept and was the talent on episode #1. The venue for this revival was the Shrine Expo Hall, which is adjacent to the landmark Shrine Auditorium. The Shrine hosted broadcasts of Emmy, Oscar and Grammy ceremonies for many years.
The Expo Hall was not quite as “production friendly” but offered quite a few architectural details that LBR was able to use to its advantage in staging the show, including a balcony that wraps around the entire room from which the pledge hosts observed and commented on the show, with the stage revealed in the background.