Berle, Milton

Berle, Milton
orig. Milton Berlinger

born July 12, 1908, New York, N.Y., U.S.
died March 27, 2002, Los Angeles, Calif.

U.S. comedian.

He appeared in vaudeville from age 10 and later acted in more than 50 silent films. He worked chiefly as a nightclub comedian (1939–49) while vainly seeking a radio audience. His slapstick routines and facial contortions, however, were more suited to a visual medium, and between 1937 and 1968 he appeared in 19 movies. His greatest success came with the television variety show Texaco Star Theater (1948–54), a show so popular that many people are said to have bought television sets just to watch "Uncle Miltie."

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▪ 2003
Mendel Berlinger 
      American comedian, actor, and songwriter (b. July 12, 1908, New York, N.Y.—d. March 27, 2002, Los Angeles, Calif.), came to be known as “Mr. Television” after he pioneered the TV variety show in 1948, and his flamboyant antics inspired hundreds of thousands of Americans to purchase their first TV sets so they could watch his show, Texaco Star Theater. The number of sets grew from 136,000 in 1947 to 700,000 in 1948, and restaurants and entertainment venues arranged their schedules around his Tuesday-evening broadcast. Berle began his show business career when he was five years old and won a Charlie Chaplin impersonation contest. His mother saw an opportunity and began making the rounds of agents' offices, and she and her children soon were appearing in silent films. Among Berle's silents were The Perils of Pauline (1914), his debut, and The Mark of Zorro (1920). He made his Broadway debut in The Floradora Girl (1920), joined the vaudeville circuit with a partner, and in late 1924 made his first appearance as a solo act. Around that time Berle began to incorporate into his act what would later become one of his trademarks—dressing in women's clothes. He also “borrowed” jokes from other comics, something that earned him the nickname “the Thief of Bad Gags.” In addition to vaudeville, Berle added Broadway appearances in a few shows, including Earl Carroll's Vanities (1932) and The Ziegfeld Follies (1936), and roles in such motion pictures as New Faces of 1937 (1937) and Sun Valley Serenade (1941) to his credits, and he performed on several radio shows. He also began writing what would eventually total some 400 songs (including “Sam, You Made the Pants Too Long”). It was television, however, that made the uninhibited “Uncle Miltie” a household name. Berle won an Emmy Award in 1949, and Texaco Star Theater was such a hit that in 1951 NBC gave him a 30-year “lifetime” contract. The show became the Buick-Berle Show in 1953 and ended in 1955. The Milton Berle Show followed but, losing ratings to ever-increasing competition, went off the air in 1956. Berle thereafter made numerous TV guest appearances, performed in nightclubs, was a staple of celebrity roasts, and continued to appear on Broadway (Goodbye People [1968]) and in movies, among them It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World (1963) and Broadway Danny Rose (1984). He also was the coauthor of seven books, including Milton Berle: An Autobiography (1974) and B.S. I Love You (1987). In 1984 Berle became one of the original inductees into the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Hall of Fame.

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▪ American comedian
original name  Milton Berlinger  
born July 12, 1908, New York, New York, U.S.
died March 27, 2002, Los Angeles, California
 American comedian who, as a popular entertainer in the early days of television in the United States, came to be known as “Mr. Television.”

      Berle first appeared on the vaudeville stage at age 10. With his mother's encouragement, he continued in vaudeville throughout his youth, and he also acted in more than 50 silent films. He attended a school for professional children and soon began to perform as a master of ceremonies, and in the legitimate theatre as a comedian. He was known for blatantly borrowing jokes and comic routines from other comedians. For a decade after 1939 Berle worked chiefly in nightclubs, at the same time vainly attempting to gain a radio audience. None of his radio programs lasted more than a year. He continued to appear in motion pictures, making 19 between 1937 and 1968, including Let's Make Love (1960) and It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World (1963).

      Berle's type of comedy—rapid delivery accompanied by slapstick and facial contortions—and his willingness to elicit laughter at any cost seemed to suit a visual medium. Eventually he achieved national recognition and great popularity when he entered television. His hugely successful Texaco Star Theater (1948–54) was credited with popularizing the new medium in the United States; the variety show, noted for its unpredictable live performances, led to a dramatic increase in the number of television sets purchased. Especially popular were skits in which Berle dressed in women's clothing. “Uncle Miltie,” as he became known, worked regularly on television until 1966 and was among the first inductees into the Television Academy Hall of Fame in 1984. A frequent performer at charity benefits, Berle was a popular host of celebrity roasts in his later years. He was often seen smoking a cigar, which became a trademark. His books include Out of My Trunk (1945), Milton Berle: An Autobiography (1974), and B.S. I Love You: Sixty Funny Years with the Famous and the Infamous (1988).

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Universalium. 2010.

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  • BERLE, MILTON — (formerly Mendel Berlinger; 1908–2002), U.S. comedian, known as Mr. Television and Uncle Miltie. Born in New York, Berle played in nightclubs, films, and Broadway shows, including the Ziegfeld Follies of 1943. From 1948 to 1956 he did a weekly… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Berle,Milton — Berle (bûrl), Milton. Originally Milton Berlinger. Born 1908. American entertainer and comedian. His television series Texaco Star Theater (1948 1956) earned him the name “Mr. Television.” * * * …   Universalium

  • Berle, Milton — orig. Milton Berlinger (12 jul. 1908, Nueva York, N.Y., EE.UU.–27 mar. 2002, Los Ángeles, Cal.). Comediante estadounidense. A la edad de 10 años comenzó su carrera en espectáculos de vodevil y más tarde actuó en más de 50 películas mudas. Trabajó …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Milton Berle — Berle at the 41st Primetime Emmy Awards in 1989 Born Milton Berlinger July 12, 1908(1908 07 12) Manhattan, New York, U.S …   Wikipedia

  • Milton Berle — Nombre real Mendel Berlinger Nacimiento 12 de julio de 1908 …   Wikipedia Español

  • Milton Berle — [Milton Berle] (1908–2002) a US ↑comedian known as ‘Mister Television’. He became the first national television star in the 1950s with his programme Texaco Star Theater …   Useful english dictionary

  • Berle (disambiguation) — Berle is the surname of these notable people:* Adolf Berle (1895 1971), U.S. educator and diplomat * Marshall Berle * Milton Berle (1908 2002), U.S. comedian and actoree also* Emmanuel Berl …   Wikipedia

  • Milton — Milton, John * * * (as used in expressions) Babbitt, Milton (Byron) Berle, Milton Milton Berlinger John Milton Cage, Jr. Friedman, Milton Hart, Lorenz (Milton) Hay, John (Milton) Milton Gruenwald Lear, Norman (Milton) Milton, John Obote, (Apollo) …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Milton — /mil tn/, n. 1. John, 1608 74, English poet. 2. a town in SE Ontario, in S Canada. 28,067. 3. a town in E Massachusetts, near Boston. 25,860. 4. a male given name: a family name taken from a placename meaning mill town. * * * (as used in… …   Universalium

  • Milton Berle — und seine Frau bei der Premiere von Bette Midler s The Rose 1979 (Foto: Alan Light) Milton Berle (bürgerlich: Mendel Berlinger; * 12. Juli 1908 in New York, N.Y.; † 27. März 2002 in Los Angeles in Kaliforni …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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