This Week in Comedy History Dec 15 – Dec 21
Tim Conway, Bill Hicks, Eugene Levy, Chris Farley, Gary Morton, Foster Brooks, Ray Ramano.
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Branson of the North Theater
B: December 15
Tim Conway: Thomas Daniel Conway born December 15, 1933
You Might Not Know: On February 5, 1969 he guest stared on the pilot of ABC’s sketch comedy show called Turn-On.
FF: Tim Conway is still doing a live show called The Tim Conway Show starring Louise DuArt.
B: December 16
Bill Hicks: William Melvin Hicks December 16, 1961 – February 26, 1994
You Might Not Know: Up to 1993 Bill Hicks and Denis Leary were close friends, until Leary put out a CD that Hicks claimed was full of stolen material.
stand-up comedian, social critic, satirist, musician
FF: When Bill was 17 his parents took him to see psychoanalyst a due to his rebellious behavior.
B: December 17
Eugene Levy: Eugene Levy born December 17, 1946
You Might Not Know: Levy doesn’t consider himself a comedian and is quoted saying, “When I’m introduced as a comedian, I always get an odd feeling, because I’m a comic actor. I get my laughs through characters, not necessarily as myself.”
actor, comedian, writer
FF: Levy was appointed to the Order of Canada on June 30, 2011.
D: December 18
Chris Farley: Christopher Crosby Farley, February 15, 1964 – December 18, 1997.
You Might Not Know: Crish Farley started doing professional comedy at the Ark Improv Theatre in Madison, Wisconsin.
FF: Farley was posthumously awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on August 26, 2005,
B: December 19
Gary Morton: Gary Goldaper December 19, 1924 – March 30, 1999
You Might Not Know: Starting around 1967, Morton did stand up comedy to warm up the audiences for Lucille Ball’s TV shows.
FF: Morton designed a European Street set for the origial Star Trek TV series, but it was never used.
D: December 20
Foster Brooks May 11, 1912 – December 20, 2001
You Might Not Know: In 1969, Brooks got his big break after being discovered by Singer Perry Como at a golf tournament in North Carolina.
FF: Foster Brooks is known as the original “Fake” drunk, for his portrayal of a lovable drunken man in nightclub performances and television programs.
70th Annual Peabody Awards
B: December 21
Ray Romano: Raymond Albert Romano born December 21, 1957
You Might Not Know: Ray started his comedy career when he competed in the Johnnie Walker Comedy Search in 1989.
actor, stand-up comedian, screenwriter and voice actor
FF: Ray loves to play poker and has competed in the World Series of Poker in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2013.