Following the Network pilot episode on the 7 July 1973 the show was commissioned for a 14 episode series starting in September 1973.
Show producer Les Cocks set about the daunting task of auditioning 1,200 acts on a fifteen-day tour across the country to find just 100 acts to complete the line-ups of the 13 show heats and battle for a place in the series grand final. At the London Palladium alone he saw 230 acts in just two days.
An advert from the Birmingham Daily Post (Wednesday 08 August 1973) gave wannabe stars just one day to prepare for the first audition dates that would be held at the Birmingham Theatre over the following two days between 9:30am and 6:00pm.
It was a relentless schedule of auditions over a long three week period for Les Cocks and his team as they travelled to eight cities the country looking for the next big name.
The auditions were held on the dates listed below and were open to both union and non-union artists as long as they were over 16 years old.
The entertainment press had a few complaints from some artists who attended the auditions that they were limited to just two minutes to make an impression which would have limited their chances of being selected.
|9-10 Aug 1973||Birmingham|
|13-14 Aug 1973||Manchester (Palace Theatre)|
|15-16 Aug 1973||Leeds (Grand Theatre)|
|17-18 Aug 1973||Edinburgh (Church Hill Theatre)|
|20-21 Aug 1973||Cardiff (Cathays, Malefant Street)|
|22-33 Aug 1973||Bristol (Hippodrome)|
|24-25 Aug 1973||London (Palladium)|
|28-29 Aug 1973||Norwich (Theatre Royal Rehearsal Hall)|