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I was raised never to carp about things and never to moan, because in vaudeville, which is my background, you just got on with it through all kinds of adversities.
I think there's a lot of, unfortunately, unfunny ventriloquists out there, so they've got a bad rap. It came after Edgar Bergen because everybody had a little cheeky boy dummy like Charlie McCarthy, and everybody decided to become a ventriloquist because Bergen had popularized it. He brought it back from the doldrums of vaudeville.
I was always a fan of the old-style comics. I loved vaudeville. I loved Milton Berle, Dick Shawn, Phyllis Diller, Don Rickles, Charlie Callas, all those guys. Hilarious. I love the Bing Crosby and Bob Hope movies, and Abbott & Costello. My television influences were 'Monty Python's Flying Circus,' 'Benny Hill,' and 'Hee Haw.'
Larry the Cable Guy
You bet I arrived overnight. Over a few hundred nights in the Catskills, in vaudeville, in clubs and on Broadway.
George Burns was a Vaudeville performer I particularly loved.
Touring on 'Folie' was like being the last act at the vaudeville show: We were rotten vegetable targets in clandestine hoods.
It's strange because even in the vaudeville days, ventriloquists were never the main attraction. They were the guys brought out to stand in front of the curtain while sets were being changed. Ventriloquism wasn't even celebrated as an art until Edgar Bergen came along in the 1930s.
Nobody seems to know yet how television is going to affect the radio, movies, love, housekeeping or the church, but it has definitely revived vaudeville.
Vaudeville was characterized by sunny optimism, acts that were uplifting, cheerful, and clean. It provided a fanciful, magical escape, but after Black Friday, the tone of American entertainment changed almost overnight.
I was very interested in vaudeville. It was the only sort of discipline that was a five-minute act on stage, which is what I really enjoyed and saw myself doing. And I bought books on it.
TV - a clever contraction derived from the words Terrible Vaudeville. However, it is our latest medium - we call it a medium because nothing's well done.
I wasn't straining at the bit to become a movie star any more than I had plotted to get out of vaudeville and into Broadway musicals.
I do not like vaudeville, but what can I do? It likes me.
Milton took vaudeville, which, if you look up 'vaudeville' in the dictionary, right alongside of it, it says 'Milton Berle' - and he made it just a tremendous party.
Dance, vaudeville, drama, movies - as a child I loved everything that went on in a theater.
I'm not subject to their rise and fall because I'm not accepted by them, so I have my own little curve going on. A lot of it is because of how much I play, I think I connect like when all you had was Vaudeville, I think I have an audience by performing a lot!
I came to N.Y.C. in 1988 and got very involved with Act Up. I also started making movies, including two very gay shorts, 'Vaudeville' and 'Lady.' It was the height of the AIDS epidemic, and New York City was both dying and very alive at the same time.
The violence or the vaudeville style of comedy is a technique all by itself. You get up there, and you are a comedian, and you're doing one thing. That is, you're going to make the audience laugh.
For me, my preference for comedy is grounding it in the psychology of the character, and not just kind of making faces. Even when it's a crazy character, grounded comedy resonates more with people because it doesn't look like you're watching someone do vaudeville. No offense to vaudeville.
If vaudeville had died, television was the box they put it in.
There were a great many in vaudeville - people who never quite came through. But they had their place, and they filled it. They kept theatres open. Those pan-timers, those interstate-timers, those four-a-dayers, those six-a-dayers - they were an integral part of that endearing merry-go-round called vaudeville.
For better or worse, I have a lot of vaudeville circus skills that you just can't showcase in Aaron Sorkin's work.
If I was on Broadway, I would want to do anything Vaudeville or a biopic.
In Edna, I created a satiric portrait of my hometown of Melbourne, a large provincial English city paradoxically in far Southeast Asia. She's a theatrical figure, related to vaudeville in some respects. She inhabits a world in which there are comparatively few female exponents of comedy.
So many people are working in vaudeville today that I looked for three weeks to book enough acts for an hour bill and didn't have them until the night before we opened in Buffalo and money was no object!
Martin Luther King, Jr.
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