The Night Walk TV series from 1986 is a first-person trip through Toronto accompanied by jazz music. A total of four episodes were filmed. The same episode of each show aired nightly between 2:30-6 a.m. on the Global Television Network throughout Ontario and parts of Canada from 1986 until 1993. See full episodes from the complete series below.
Night Walk/Moves/Ride/Walk Ep2 | See on YouTube
VIDEO: LIVE STREAM
ABOUT THE SERIES
An alternative to Global TV’s overnight test pattern on its’ over-the-air stations, the 60-minute Night Walk (with two 2-minute commercial breaks) was scheduled to begin airing at 4 a.m. ET on the morning of May 3, 1986 and the 60-minute Night Ride followed by the early morning of June 22, 1986. Both shows were filmed in one night, on May 2, 1986 between 10 p.m. and 1 a.m., in and around downtown Toronto using the relatively new Steadicam camera stabilizer. Night Moves, a 30 minute episode, was also filmed in one night, on October 5, 1986, and began airing before Night Ride and Night Walk beginning at 3 a.m. ET on the early morning of Dec. 7, 1986. The second 60 minute version of Night Walk, featuring the same soundtrack as the first episode and footage from the Night Moves shoot, made its first appearance by May 1987. These four were the only episodes made, and they were replayed nightly until the summer of 1993. The shows are now considered early examples of “slow TV.”
The smooth jazz soundtrack was performed by top Toronto musicians and all tunes were composed by series creator Michael Spivak (owner of the production company, Jaylar Productions Limited). Bill Elliott directed the shows, and David Crone was the cinematographer.
On weeknights throughout the summer of 1986, Night Walk aired at 2:30 a.m. followed by Night Ride at 3:30 a.m. ET. The live stream is showing these episodes in their original weekday time slots beginning nightly at 2:30 a.m. ET. See a snippet of TV Guide for the night of June 23, 1986 – the first full week of Night Ride’s run.
The first Night Walk episode features the Yorkdale Subway Station in the first song; Yonge Street, starting at Gerrard Street W and featuring Sam The Record Man, A&A Records, and the still-standing Pizza Pizza (967-1111) in the second song; Yorkville in the third song; Yonge Street at Eaton Centre and the Glencairn Subway Station in the fourth song; The Sheraton Hotel and Royal Bank Plaza (PATH) in the fifth song and video from Song #1 in reverse in the sixth song.
I became a fan of the series the moment I first watched Night Walk and Night Ride at the age of 13 in the first couple weeks of the summer of 1986. I noticed the new show Night Moves in TV Guide and tuned in on its first night in December 1986. At the time I lived in St. Thomas, Ontario, and these shows inspired me to visit Toronto. I immediately loved the songs and haven’t since found anything I’ve liked more in the jazz world.
These episodes were recorded onto VHS tapes in 1987 and 1988. In 2000, I moved to Texas, where I now live. In 2005, I recorded the Night series from VHS to DVD and, in March 2017, I uploaded the shows to YouTube with full permission from Michael Spivak – composer of all songs in the series, creator of the series, and owner of the production company, Jaylar Productions Limited. Special thanks to Mr. Spivak. Comments shared using the form below will be added to this page and shared with Mr. Spivak. In early June 2017, all episodes were re-uploaded with improved audio and the original 4:3 aspect ratio. Between March and early June, the first Night Walk episode upload had received more than 2,600 views. I hope you enjoy reminiscing with the amazing music and camerawork in these shows that were each broadcast more than 2,000 times in the late 1980s and early 1990s.
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Creative Director – November 2017
Kenneth, Ottawa – October 2017
AJ – October 2017
Steve – September 2017
Daniel F., Toronto – September 2017
James Kirk – June 2017
Michael Lake – June 2017
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Nina Keogh, Toronto – April 2017
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Steve – March 2017
Thomas Phillips, Toronto – March 2017