Anchorage Varsity Show

Remember the music and good times as Anchorage Varsity Show memories take you back to when the Anchorage teens danced on TV to the latest hit songs.

anchorage varsity show

Do You Remember?

At one time, all across America, many cities had local teen dance shows on TV, and Anchorage was no exception.

Saturday afternoons from September to May. Anchorage teens could tune to KTVA channel 11 to watch area high school kids dance to the latest hits, talk about what was happening at their local high schools and even catch a performance by local teen bands.

It was a lot of fun to go to the studios of KTVA to dance on live TV. Your family and friends could watch while you were out there on the dance floor showing off your best moves. And it was a fun way to spend a Saturday afternoon with your friends.

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How I Became
a Staff Dancer
on The Varsity Show
One evening in November 1967, I got a phone call from my friend Billie Blake. It would change my life. I knew Billie from East High School. …

The Arsons
on the Varsity Show
The Arsons were invited to play on the Varsity show early in our career. Dave Paxton (Farfisa Organ) and I were just beginning to skateboard. The …

The Challenge of Live TV 
On one show, while pitching a live commercial for Gilman's Bakery as my brother Dennis played background piano, I attempted to open a fresh loaf of cellophane …

Dancing on the Varsity Show 
Watching the Varsity Show on KTVA channel 11 was always fun because you could see Anchorage teens dancing to the latest hits, you'd see the latest dance …

My Terrifying
Varsity Show
When I had just turned 13, The Varsity Show allowed teens from 13 years of age to seniors in high school to dance on the show. I got all spruced …

Jerry Rose and
The Varsity Show
 Not rated yet
The following is from an interview by Mary of Anchorage Memories with Jerry Rose (Peter Bie). Anchorage Memories – Mary: Wow, was it really …

Mike Ray and
The Varsity Show
 Not rated yet
The following is from an interview by Mary of Anchorage Memories with Michael Dougherty of Anchorage Memories, known as Mike Ray when he hosted The Varsity …

Ron Moore and
The Varsity Show
 Not rated yet
As in any story there is someone who does something extraordinary. That is precisely what Mr. August G “Augie” Hiebert did back in 1953. As …

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Sylvia Smith

Anchorage Varsity Show crew


Sylvia Smith, Varsity ShowAnchorage teen in front of the camera

Anchorage Teens

Dancing on Live TV

Circa 1968

Anchorage teens dancingLive from the KTVA studio in Spenard

Host Jim Roach and

West High Cheer Leaders


Jim Roach interviewing studio guestsLive TV interview

Anchorage Varsity Show

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and enjoy the memories

This one-of-a-kind TV dance show featured Anchorage area teens dancing to the latest hit songs of the day.

But that's not the whole story.

Anchorage high school students earned scholarships by becoming staff interns on the show.

Anchorage Teens

Dancing to the Latest Hits


Local Anchorage teensRemember some of those great slow songs?

The Anchorage Varsity Show

ran from 1959 to 1971

on KTVA channel 11

Show host Jim Roach

with Jon Carter behind the camera


Jim Roach hosting the showBehind the scenes of The Varsity Show

A live Alaskan teen dance show with a “twist”

KTVA and Augie Hiebert had a great idea.

Create a live local TV dance show for Anchorage teens and give Anchorage teens the opportunity to work in front of and behind the scenes on the show.

Did you dance on the program?

Did you watch The Varsity Show?

Or did you work on the show?

Anchorage Varsity Show

Podcast Special

The Big Alaska Show
on KFQD radio
did an interview about the Varsity Show

with Mike & Mary of Anchorage

Listen to Varsity Show memories and remember.

Show host Mike Ray

with a visiting

recording session guitarist

circa 1968

Varsity Show Host Mike RayInterviewing the people who made the music

Show crew, circa 1968

David Michael in the foreground

Tom Dougherty and

Ray Malott behind the cameras

KTVA studiosDedicated Anchorage teens behind the scenes

Show host Ron Moore

Anchorage DJ Ron Moore behind the microphonePlaying the hits for Anchorage teens

Behind the Scenes

Show Crew


varsity show crewEvery year, new show crew joined the program

It happened in the springtime each year, when the Anchorage Varsity Show held auditions for high school teens who want to be on the show's crew in the fall.

Chosen teens would spend the summer learning about their crew position. Camera, directing, sound, stage manager, “Go Go Dancers”, and commercial models – just to name a few.

When school began in the fall, the show went live each Saturday from the studios of KTVA Channel 11 in the McKinley building near downtown Anchorage (later the McKay building following the 1964 earthquake). And then from the KTVA studios in Spenard.

The show ran from the 1950s to the early 1970s.


Turn up the sound and

watch the video below

Host Roger Latham and Go Go Girl Mary Kallander – Dougherty

video courtesy of Mary J Dougherty

Anchorage Varsity Show

For so many years, having a live TV dance show for local Anchorage area teens meant fun, music, and even having your friends watch you dance on TV.

Parents could drop their teens off at the KTVA channel 11 studios, go home and watch them dance on the show, then pick them up at the studio.

And because of the show on KTVA, lots and lots of people who still live in and around Anchorage, and those who now live in other places around the world, have great memories.

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It's Easy, It's Fast, It's Fun.

 The TV Show Crew

Anchorage, Alaska high school students could audition to work on The Varsity Show in front of and behind the camera. For those who became crew members, scholarships were available at the end of each season.

Because of Augie Hiebert, president of Northern Television, many Anchorage high school teens who wanted careers in radio or television, enjoyed a great opportunity by working on the show.

Alumni of The Varsity Show have worked in local Anchorage radio and television, for national television networks and in the Hollywood motion picture industry both behind and in front of the cameras.

A live studio band entertains

circa 1967

Anchorage TV teen dance showLots of fun for Anchorage's teen audience

Show host Ron Moore

wearing the

white coat

in the picture below

ron moore hostingFrom the studios in the McKinley Building

Host Mike Ray with Staff Dancers

circa 1968

The Varsity Show host and staff dancers.A publicity shot for a show sponsor

We hope these Varsity Show memories touched your heart.

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