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Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 20 of 39
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    Jerry Springer, son of Jewish refugees whose eponymous talk show was known for conflict, dies at 79
    (Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA), 2023-04-27) Silow-Carroll, Andrew
    From 1991 until 2018, Jerry Spinger, the son of Jewish refugees from the Holocaust, was the host of a "circus-like syndicated talk show featuring feuding couples, angry exes and frequent fisticuffs." In response to criticism, including from British rabbis, Springer apologized for his tabloid-style daytime television program. Prior to his television program, Springer was politically involved. He worked on the presidential campaign of Robert F. Kennedy, ran an unsuccessful campaign for the United States Congress and was elected to Cincinnati’s City Council in 1971. In 1977, he served for a year as the mayor of Cincinnati. Click on the link to read the article.
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    Mort Sahl Got Sent Home From The Korean War To Rest...At A Psychiatric Clinic | The Ed Sullivan Show
    (YouTube, 2021-04-17) Sahl, Mort
    A video of one of Mort Sahl's appearances on the Ed Sullivan Show. Sahl was a groundbreaking Jewish American comedian, who based much of his comedy on topical subjects of the day. Click on the link above to view the video. Check out the link below for a biography of Sahl.
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    For Mort Sahl, being Jewish meant being part of the opposition
    (The Forward, 2021-10-27) Ivry, Benjamin
    Stand-up comedian Mort Sahl, who died in October 2021, was well-known for being and outspoken political critic, taking broad aim across the political spectrum. Especially noteworthy was his willingness to frankly express political views during the McCarthy period in the United States. He believed that the role of the Jew is to "rock the boat and to be inquisitive - intellectually curious," and to strive to improve society. Click on the link above to read the article.
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    Wayne & Shuster on Sullivan
    (YouYube, 1958) Wayne, Johnny; Shuster, Frank
    A YouTube video of the comedy routine, "Rinse The Blood Off My Toga," which Wayne and Shuster performed on the "Ed Sullivan Show" in 1958 (no upload date is available). Click on the link above to see the video. To read an article about Wayne and Shuster in the "Toronto Star," click on the link below.
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    Salutin: Wayne and Shuster’s comedy of gratitude
    (Toronto Star, 2011-08-25) Salutin, Rick
    Wayne and Shuster were a comedy duo who were active for over 50 years. Although they achieved notable fame in the United States, making numerous appearances on the "Ed Sullivan Show," they did not relocate to the United States and lived in Toronto. Salutin sees their comedy as characterized by a "gentleness and generosity," which he attributes to their immigrant experience and to having witnessed antisemitism. Through their association with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), they helped to forge a consciousness of Canadian culture. Click on the link above to read the article.
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    How a Review Changed Both Sarah Silverman and Our Critic
    (New York Times, 2021-05-19) Scott, A.O.; Silverman, Sarah
    Film Critic for the New York Times, A.O. Scott, wrote a scathing review of Sarah Silverman's 2005 movie, "Sarah Silverman: Jesus Is Magic." He criticized her for the attitude reflected in the film about race."“She depends on the assumption" he states, "that only someone secure in his or her own lack of racism would dare to make, or to laugh at, a racist joke, the telling of which thus becomes a way of making fun simultaneously of racism and of racial hypersensitivity.” This critique led Silverman to reexamine her comedy act. This article contains a conversation between Scott and Silverman about their attitudes about comedy and film criticism. Click on the link above to read the article. To access Scott's 2005 review of "Sarah Silverman: Jesus Is Magic," click on the link below.
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    Elaine May
    (Jewish Women's Archive, 2009-02-27) Goldstein, Eric
    This article is about Elaine May, the daughter of an actor in Yiddish theater, who was part of the popular and successful comedy duo in the 1950s and 60s, Mike Nichols and Elaine May. She later became one of the most important female directors in the 1970s and 1980s. The author says that May's work is characterized by sophisticated satire and artistic independence and integrity. He also notes that May's Judaism exerted a significant influence over her work, noting that her Jewishness "often provided the material for her comedy, as well as being a source for some of the identity conflicts of her characters." Click on the link above to read the article. Click on the links below for a review of a book about May's comedy partner, Mike Nichols, and for an example of a comedy routine by Nichols and May.
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    Nichols and May - Telephone Company Information Operators
    (YouTube, 2020-06-20) Nichols, Mike; May, Elaine
    A video of one of the signature comedy routines of Mike Nichols and Elaine May. This particular performance was from the July 9, 1965 episode of the Jack Paar Show. The routine depicts the exasperated frustration of a man who is trying to get his dime back from a pay phone at a time when the Bell Telephone Company had a total monopoly of telecommunications. Click on the link above to see the video. Click on the link below to see a review of Mark Harris's Mike Nichols: A Life.
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    Mike Nichols’s Brilliant Career
    (The New York Times Book Review, 2021-02-02) Wolcott, James
    A review of journalist and film historian, Mark Harris's biography of the well-know movie director, Mike Nichols. The book describes how Nichols trajectory was galvanized at the University of Chicago, where he met Elaine May, with whom he forged the popular and influential comedy partnership, known as Mike Nichols and Elaine May. Click on the link above to read the book review. To see a performance of a popular comedy routine, "Telephone Company Information Operators," performed by Mike Nichols and Elaine May, click on the first link below. Click on the second link below for a discussion in the Jewish Women's Archive of Elaine May's career.
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    You Don't Bring Me Flowers
    (YouTube, 2014-05-01) Diamond, Neil; Streisand, Barbra
    A performance by Neil Diamond and Barbra Streisand of their hit song, "You Don't Bring Me Flowers." The song was written by Marilyn and Alan Bergman and Neil Diamond. Click on the link above to listen and see the YouTube video. Click on the first link below to see our entry on Neil Diamond. Click on the second link below for our entry on Barbra Streisand.
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    Ira Glass: American radio and television host
    (Encylopedia Britannica, 2020-06-29) Augustyn, Adam
    This article is about radio and television host Ira Glass, best known for his program on National Public Radio (NPR), "This American Life." The program was honored with several Peabody awards and the Pulitzer Prize in 2020.The article includes a brief biography of Glass and a discussion of his career. Click on the URI above to read the article.To see the homepage of "This American Life" on NPR, click on the link below.
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    Sophie Tucker
    (Jewish Women's Archive, 2009-03-20) Borden, Anne
    This article describes the career of Sophie Tucker, an international vaudeville star, who performed for over fifty years. She performed in both Yiddish and English. Her most well-known song was "My Yiddishe Momme,” which achieved broad popularity. Some of her numbers were considered very racy, and many of her performances directly challenged "age, size, and gender stereotypes of women’s sexuality, " but they were "couched in the humor that provided an antidote to puritanism." Click on the link above to read the article.
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    Carl Reiner obituary: American screenwriter, director and actor who created TV’s The Dick Van Dyke Show
    (The Guardian, 2020-06-30) Bergan, Ronals
    An obituary of Carl Reiner, who died at the age of 98. The article discusses Reiner's long career, beginning with his role as a writer and performer on the popular comedy series, "Your Show of Shows," starring Sid Ceasar and Imogene Coca, before moving on to creating, writing and acting in the very popular TV series, "The Dick Van Dyke Show," starring Dick Van Dyke and Mary Tyler Moore. What followed was a long career in film as writer actor and director. Click on the link to read the article.
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    Sammy Davis Jr.'s Jewish story
    (YouTube, 2018-12-08) World Jewish Congress
    A video produced by the World Jewish Congress illustrating with quotes Sammy Davis Jr.'s identification with the state of Israel and with the Jewish people. Click on the link to see it on YouTube.
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    1990: Sammy Davis Jr., Famous Convert to Judaism, Dies : Sammy Davis - a great mainstream star in an era when, as a black man, he couldn't stay in some of the hotels he performed in
    (Haaretz, 2013-05-16) Green, David B.
    Part of Haaretz's "This Day in Jewish History" series, this article discusses the life, career and formal conversion to Judaism of the African-American entertainer, Sammy Davis Jr. The article notes that while Davis was recovering in the hospital from injuries sustained in a car accident, performer Eddie Cantor spoke to him about the similarities between black and Jewish culture. That sparked Davis' interest in Judaism and he began reading about Judaism. He converted some time later. Click on the link to read the article.
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    Jerry Stiller, Comedian With Enduring Appeal, Is Dead at 92
    (The New York Times, 2020-05-11) Keepnews, Peter
    The New York Times' obituary for comedian and actor Jerry Stiller. Stiller's career career included stand-up comedy with his wife, Anne Meara, roles in both Broadway and off-Broadway and on television, most notably in the classic comedy series "Seinfeld." Click on the link to read the obituary.
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    Danny Kaye Biography: Entertainer, Humanitarian, Renaissance Man
    (unicefusa.org, 2019) The Danny Kaye Society
    A short biography of Danny Kaye, a popular twentieth century entertainer and a dedicated humanitarian. Click on the link above to access.
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    The Jack Benny Program: The Lunch Counter Murder
    (CBS, 1960-12-04) Benny, Jack
    An entire television episode of the Jack Benny Program, downloaded from the Internet Archive. It was first aired on December 4, 1960. It was added to the Internet Archive in 2008. Click on the icon to watch the program.
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    Jack Benny’s Comic Program: Remembering Something Wonderful
    (Commenatry Magazine, 2017-10) Teachout, Terry
    This article in Commentary Magazine discusses the uniqueness and"quintessentially Jewish" nature of Jack Benny's comedy. "The Jack Benny Program" initially began as a radio show in 1932 that continued until 1950, when it became a TV show with the same title. Click on the link to read the article.
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    George Burns | Jewish Currents Archive
    (Jewish Currents, 2018-01-19) Admin
    A brief biographical article on George Burns that includes the entire pilot for The George Burns and Gracie Allan Show. Click on the link above to access.