Reach for the Top (Series) (1961- )

Reach for the Top
The televised Reach for the Top series was first shown on CBC affiliate CBUT in Vancouver, British Columbia in 1961. The first national Reach for the Top tournament took place in 1965. The series was filmed at locations across Canada with the national championships held in Montreal, Quebec. In 1968 a short-lived Trans-World Top Team series was created by the CBC and BBC, in which teams from the United Kingdom played teams from Canada.

The CBC stopped airing Reach for the Top in 1984, but it continues to be shown on private networks. Each year several hundred schools form their "Reach" Clubs and play off against each other at the league level, provincial level, and finally, the National level. The Provincial and National finals in which these Schoolreach teams compete are taped as "Reach for the Top", the television show that started it all. In the classroom, it's the "Schoolreach Subscription Programme" of "Reach For The Top", established in 1985.

From 1973 to 1997 the French language division of the CBC, Société Radio-Canada, aired a program called Génies en herbe, ("Budding Geniuses"), which was the French language equivalent.

Bill Paul .... Announcer/Host
Bill Guest .... Winnipeg Quizmaster/National Quizmaster (1969-1985)
Daniel Richler .... National Quizmaster (2001-2004)
Warren Davis .... Toronto Quizmaster (1965-66)
Alex Trebek .... Toronto Quizmaster (1966-1973)
Jan Tennant .... Toronto Quizmaster (1973-83)
Bob Karstens .... Toronto Quizmaster (1983-84)
Sharon Dunn .... Toronto Quizmaster (1984)
Terry Garner .... Vancouver Quizmaster (1961-?)
Gerry Fogarty .... Halifax Quizmaster (1960s)
Art Andrews
Colin MacLean .... Edmonton Quizmaster
Lionel Moore .... Host

Original Broadcaster(s): CBUT/CBC (1961-1984)

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Comments (1)
I was actually on Reach for the Top, produced in Ottawa, Ontario in 1971. I was from Rideau High School and so excited to be part of the program. We would have lunch time rehersals at school in preparation for the big day. When we entered the CBC studio we met the host, Brian Smith, and were asked to take our seats on the stage. I was just fine until the red light came on above the tv camera. I just froze! I don't think I could even remember my name. Needless to say, our school team lost to Laurentian High School that day and I discovered that tvland was not my calling!

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For an in-depth look at CBC programs (1952-82),
Blaine Allan's directory