Dick Clark’s death yesterday will no doubt prompt loads of stories and television programs chronicling the legacy of American Bandstand. West Philly residents can experience that legacy first-hand.
American Bandstand started in 1952 in a studio at WFIL (which became WPVI, “6ABC”) located adjacent to the EL tracks at 4548 Market Street. The nondescript, cream-colored building now houses The Enterprise Center and other non-profits. The only reminder of its past is the small American Bandstand historical marker out front and the massive satellite dish on the roof.
The building was one of the first designed specifically for television broadcasting.
This Saturday, the Enterprise Center will open to the public the original American Bandstand studio, “Studio B,” which contains photos and memorabilia from the show. Although the studio appeared much larger on television, it is only about 3,300 square feet. The show was broadcast from Philadelphia until 1964 when it moved to Los Angeles.
This Saturday the studio will be open for visits and tours from Noon-3 p.m.