"Same procedure as every year" - the most famous quote from this play (whose title I have not needed to translate!) accurately sums up the attendant ritual.

First recorded in 1963 by a North German TV network, the play was written by the British author Lauri Wylie, who is remembered for little else. There are only two characters, the ageing aristocratic Miss Sophie (played by May Warden) and her servant James (played by Freddie Frinton). But James is called on to imitate a host of characters - all of whom, sadly, are now deceased. It is tempting to say that the tiger skin rug is a third character on stage, as James repeatedly stumbles over it, all the more so as he becomes increasingly inebriated whilst drinking toasts to absent friends as he serves a succession of courses. Miss Sophie does not exactly abstain, but appears to remain sober, and at the end the two of them disappear upstairs together. There were rumours about their real life relationship.

For many German people New Year's Eve without this play on TV would be unthinkable. Though it has been dubbed into German, including some dialects, and endured colourisation, the classic black and white version with English dialect is the one for the purists.

Nowhere has it ever become as popular as in Germany, but it has intermittently been screened elsewhere, with Scandinavian countries periodically banning it due to the irresponsible consumption of alcohol. It was screened for the first time on UK TV in 2018.

More Info: en.wikipedia.org