Olympic Games, Melbourne 1956: Official souvenir recording of Opening Ceremony
This recording includes highlights from the ABC Radio broadcast of the opening ceremony of the 1956 Melbourne Olympics, the first to be held in the Southern Hemisphere and the first Australian event to be covered extensively on radio and television.
The recordings include speeches by Prime Minister RG Menzies, President of the International Olympic Committee Avery Brundage and Governor of Victoria Sir Dallas Brooks, with music provided by the Victorian Symphony Orchestra and a massed choir conducted by Sir Bernard Heinze.
While the Melbourne Olympics are often highlighted as heralding the arrival of TV in Australia, television set ownership at the time was very low.
It was the ABC radio broadcasts which brought the Olympics to Australian homes and helped shift local and international perceptions of Australia.