In 1976, the artists’ collective Cable Soho convinced the cable company to extend service south of Houston Street. What followed was a homegrown electronic Cabaret Voltaire. From Jaime Davidovich’s block party on Wooster Street to Bob Hope’s views on Nam June Paik, Soho produced absurd artistic entertainment for the home.
This is a sampler of excerpts from “Soho Television Presents.” The first clip is the inaugural broadcast of Cable Soho. It is a live-televised block party on Wooster Street. On this day in the summer of 1976, artist Jaime Davidovich of became the first Soho resident to get cable; Davidovich conducts man-on-the-street interviews and a cable-company manager reads Cable Soho’s press release.
The second clip is an episode of SOHO TELEVISION PRESENTS called “Outreach.” This ahead-of-its-time mock-talk show lampoons New York’s art museums and the lip-service paid to “community” and “diversity” in grant proposals and mission statements. Gags galore. With Gregory Battcock and Marcia Tucker.
The remainder of clips are from Davidovich’s own cable program, produced 1979-1984, The Live! Show, which he described as “the variety show of the avant garde.” Appearances from Marshall Effron, Paul McMahon, Tim Maul and…Bob Hope.