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In her one-hour interview for the American Comedy Archives at Emerson College, Rose Marie (1923-2017) talks about entering show business at age three, and soon after becoming a smash hit as "Baby Rose Marie," selling out the Capital Theater in New York, and with her own NBC radio show. She describes her long friendship and professional association with Milton Berle, as well as her husband Buddy Guy, a trumpet player in Kay Kyser’s band. She recounts playing Las Vegas, and her professional and personal association with mobsters like Bugsy Siegel and Al Capone. She discusses playing "Sally Rogers" on 'The Dick Van Dyke Show,' and working with Van Dyke, the cast, and producer Sheldon Leonard. She speaks of playing "Myrna Gibbons" for five years on 'The Doris Day Show,' and her subsequent stage show "4 Girls 4" with Helen O’Connell, Rosemary Clooney, and Margaret Whiting. She details having dealt with the business end of show business, and concludes with a summary of her career. Bill Dana and Jenni Matz conducted the interview on January 24, 2006 in Van Nuys, CA. Additional topics covered include: Advice, Television Industry, Child Labor Laws, and Comedy Series. An additional show mentioned during the interview is 'The Doris Day Show.'

2006-01-24

In her one-hour interview for the American Comedy Archives at Emerson College, Betty White talks about her early aspirations before setting on a career in television and appearing on several early live and local Los Angeles broadcasts. She describes her first show 'Life with Elizabeth,' and becoming one of the first television stars to form her own production company with the help of producer Don Fedderson. She recounts her time playing "Sue Ann Nivens" on the classic 'Mary Tyler Moore Show,' including the famous "Chuckles Bites the Dust" episode. White discusses the importance of humor in her life, and playing "Rose Nylund" for seven seasons on 'The Golden Girls.' She speaks of her "bag of tricks" as an actress, as well as the business side of the entertainment industry. She discusses her prolific career on several game shows including 'Match Game' and 'Password.' She outlines her then-current role as "Catherine Piper" on 'Boston Legal,' and working on that show with co-star William Shatner. She concludes with some words of wisdom for aspiring television performers, and comments on her career longevity. Bill Dana and Jenni Matz conducted the interview on March 11, 2005 at Emerson College in Boston, MA. Additional topics covered include: Advice, Characters & Catchphrases, Classic TV series episodes, Comedy, Pop Culture, TV's Golden Age (1940s & '50s), Television Industry, and Comedy Series.

2005-03-11

In her hour-and-a-half interview for the American Comedy Archives at Emerson College, Janis Paige talks about her early life and discovering she had the ability to make people laugh at a young age. She recalls her first feature film, "Hollywood Canteen," and soon after moving to New York to pursue a career on stage. She describes a stint in vaudeville, which lead to being cast on Broadway in "Remains to be Seen," and later as the lead in "The Pajama Game." She recounts appearing in several feature films, including "Silk Stockings" with Fred Astaire, and "Please Don’t Eat the Daisies" with Doris Day. Paige speaks of her many roles on television, including playing the lead in the sitcom 'It’s Always Jan,' guest shots on 'The Mary Tyler Moore Show' and 'Happy Days,' and an infamous appearance on 'All in the Family' in which she kissed "Archie Bunker," much to his wife "Edith’s" dismay. She concludes by discussing her stints on the daytime dramas 'Capitol 'and 'Santa Barbara,' and how she’d like to be remembered. Robert Fleming conducted the interview on May 27, 2005 in Los Angeles, CA. Additional topics covered include: Creative Influences and Inspiration, Diversity in Television, Pivotal Career Moments, Television Industry, Women, Comedy Series, and Daytime/Primetime Serials.

2005-05-27

In her one-hour interview for the American Comedy Archives at Emerson College, Betty White talks about her early aspirations before setting on a career in television and appearing on several early live and local Los Angeles broadcasts. She describes her first show 'Life with Elizabeth,' and becoming one of the first television stars to form her own production company with the help of producer Don Fedderson. She recounts her time playing "Sue Ann Nivens" on the classic 'Mary Tyler Moore Show,' including the famous "Chuckles Bites the Dust" episode. White discusses the importance of humor in her life, and playing "Rose Nylund" for seven seasons on 'The Golden Girls.' She speaks of her "bag of tricks" as an actress, as well as the business side of the entertainment industry. She discusses her prolific career on several game shows including 'Match Game' and 'Password.' She outlines her then-current role as "Catherine Piper" on 'Boston Legal,' and working on that show with co-star William Shatner. She concludes with some words of wisdom for aspiring television performers, and comments on her career longevity. Bill Dana and Jenni Matz conducted the interview on March 11, 2005 at Emerson College in Boston, MA. Additional topics covered include: Advice, Characters & Catchphrases, Classic TV series episodes, Comedy, Pop Culture, TV's Golden Age (1940s & '50s), Television Industry, and Comedy Series.

2005-03-11

In her hour-and-a-half interview for the American Comedy Archives at Emerson College, Janis Paige talks about her early life and discovering she had the ability to make people laugh at a young age. She recalls her first feature film, "Hollywood Canteen," and soon after moving to New York to pursue a career on stage. She describes a stint in vaudeville, which lead to being cast on Broadway in "Remains to be Seen," and later as the lead in "The Pajama Game." She recounts appearing in several feature films, including "Silk Stockings" with Fred Astaire, and "Please Don’t Eat the Daisies" with Doris Day. Paige speaks of her many roles on television, including playing the lead in the sitcom 'It’s Always Jan,' guest shots on 'The Mary Tyler Moore Show' and 'Happy Days,' and an infamous appearance on 'All in the Family' in which she kissed "Archie Bunker," much to his wife "Edith’s" dismay. She concludes by discussing her stints on the daytime dramas 'Capitol 'and 'Santa Barbara,' and how she’d like to be remembered. Robert Fleming conducted the interview on May 27, 2005 in Los Angeles, CA. Additional topics covered include: Creative Influences and Inspiration, Diversity in Television, Pivotal Career Moments, Television Industry, Women, Comedy Series, and Daytime/Primetime Serials.

2005-05-27

In her hour-and-a-half interview for the American Comedy Archives at Emerson College, Janis Paige talks about her early life and discovering she had the ability to make people laugh at a young age. She recalls her first feature film, "Hollywood Canteen," and soon after moving to New York to pursue a career on stage. She describes a stint in vaudeville, which lead to being cast on Broadway in "Remains to be Seen," and later as the lead in "The Pajama Game." She recounts appearing in several feature films, including "Silk Stockings" with Fred Astaire, and "Please Don’t Eat the Daisies" with Doris Day. Paige speaks of her many roles on television, including playing the lead in the sitcom 'It’s Always Jan,' guest shots on 'The Mary Tyler Moore Show' and 'Happy Days,' and an infamous appearance on 'All in the Family' in which she kissed "Archie Bunker," much to his wife "Edith’s" dismay. She concludes by discussing her stints on the daytime dramas 'Capitol 'and 'Santa Barbara,' and how she’d like to be remembered. Robert Fleming conducted the interview on May 27, 2005 in Los Angeles, CA. Additional topics covered include: Creative Influences and Inspiration, Diversity in Television, Pivotal Career Moments, Television Industry, Women, Comedy Series, and Daytime/Primetime Serials.

2005-05-27

In her one-hour interview for the American Comedy Archives at Emerson College, Rose Marie (1923-2017) talks about entering show business at age three, and soon after becoming a smash hit as "Baby Rose Marie," selling out the Capital Theater in New York, and with her own NBC radio show. She describes her long friendship and professional association with Milton Berle, as well as her husband Buddy Guy, a trumpet player in Kay Kyser’s band. She recounts playing Las Vegas, and her professional and personal association with mobsters like Bugsy Siegel and Al Capone. She discusses playing "Sally Rogers" on 'The Dick Van Dyke Show,' and working with Van Dyke, the cast, and producer Sheldon Leonard. She speaks of playing "Myrna Gibbons" for five years on 'The Doris Day Show,' and her subsequent stage show "4 Girls 4" with Helen O’Connell, Rosemary Clooney, and Margaret Whiting. She details having dealt with the business end of show business, and concludes with a summary of her career. Bill Dana and Jenni Matz conducted the interview on January 24, 2006 in Van Nuys, CA. Additional topics covered include: Advice, Television Industry, Child Labor Laws, and Comedy Series. An additional show mentioned during the interview is 'The Doris Day Show.'

2006-01-24

In her one-hour interview for the American Comedy Archives at Emerson College, Rose Marie (1923-2017) talks about entering show business at age three, and soon after becoming a smash hit as "Baby Rose Marie," selling out the Capital Theater in New York, and with her own NBC radio show. She describes her long friendship and professional association with Milton Berle, as well as her husband Buddy Guy, a trumpet player in Kay Kyser’s band. She recounts playing Las Vegas, and her professional and personal association with mobsters like Bugsy Siegel and Al Capone. She discusses playing "Sally Rogers" on 'The Dick Van Dyke Show,' and working with Van Dyke, the cast, and producer Sheldon Leonard. She speaks of playing "Myrna Gibbons" for five years on 'The Doris Day Show,' and her subsequent stage show "4 Girls 4" with Helen O’Connell, Rosemary Clooney, and Margaret Whiting. She details having dealt with the business end of show business, and concludes with a summary of her career. Bill Dana and Jenni Matz conducted the interview on January 24, 2006 in Van Nuys, CA. Additional topics covered include: Advice, Television Industry, Child Labor Laws, and Comedy Series. An additional show mentioned during the interview is 'The Doris Day Show.'

2006-01-24

In her one-hour interview for the American Comedy Archives at Emerson College, Betty White talks about her early aspirations before setting on a career in television and appearing on several early live and local Los Angeles broadcasts. She describes her first show 'Life with Elizabeth,' and becoming one of the first television stars to form her own production company with the help of producer Don Fedderson. She recounts her time playing "Sue Ann Nivens" on the classic 'Mary Tyler Moore Show,' including the famous "Chuckles Bites the Dust" episode. White discusses the importance of humor in her life, and playing "Rose Nylund" for seven seasons on 'The Golden Girls.' She speaks of her "bag of tricks" as an actress, as well as the business side of the entertainment industry. She discusses her prolific career on several game shows including 'Match Game' and 'Password.' She outlines her then-current role as "Catherine Piper" on 'Boston Legal,' and working on that show with co-star William Shatner. She concludes with some words of wisdom for aspiring television performers, and comments on her career longevity. Bill Dana and Jenni Matz conducted the interview on March 11, 2005 at Emerson College in Boston, MA. Additional topics covered include: Advice, Characters & Catchphrases, Classic TV series episodes, Comedy, Pop Culture, TV's Golden Age (1940s & '50s), Television Industry, and Comedy Series.

2005-03-11

During the first hour of her interview with Jenni Matz, Tracey Ullman touches: On her childhood and early influences, including how she started doing impersonations; on her career aspirations when she was growing up, and on attending a performing arts school starting at age 12, and the role that class played in acting opportunities in England at the time." On leaving school at 16 and moving to Berlin as a dancer; on how she transitioned into acting, and on being cast in the improvised play "Four in a Million", which led to her being cast on a sketch show on the BBC; on how she began recording pop music, and on making music videos and touring; on appearing in the dramatic film "Plenty". On what her family thought of her early success; on meeting her husband, Allan McKeown, and on moving to the United States; on being cast in a pilot, which she ended up being very disappointed in; on meeting James L. Brooks, and on his idea that she should have a sketch show on Fox, and on doing research into American comedy before starting her show. On her concept for 'The Tracey Ullman Show' before it began; on casting Julie Kavner and Dan Castellaneta on the show; on the challenges and experimentation of 'The Tracey Ullman Show'; on the preparation and pace of the show; on the show being filmed in front of a live audience. On her character "Kay Clark" on 'The Tracey Ullman Show;' on the character "Francesca" on 'The Tracey Ullman Show', and on "Ginny Tilman"; on performing different accents, particularly on 'The Tracey Ullman Show', and on how she transforms into characters; on playing "Carol", a Black woman, on the show, and on playing characters of different ethnicities; on her favorite sketches on the show, and on 'The Simpsons' getting it start as interstitials on 'The Tracey Ullman Show.'

2020-01-30

During the final hour of her interview with Jenni Matz, Tracey Ullman touches: On how she prepares herself to get into character, and on how to be a good leader on set; on her writing process, and on collaborating with other writers; on why she loves working in television; on maintaining confidence in her work, and on enjoying her anonymity, and on her level of fame. On how television has changed since she started in the business, and on how the industry can or should change in light of the #MeToo and Times Up movements; on the then-current comedians and television shows she enjoys; on meeting some of her comedic heroes over the years, and on meeting Muhammad Ali when she was in character; on the advice and opportunities she's received in her career. On the advice she'd give to someone starting out in the television industry, and on the balance between being a performer and a well-rounded person; on the dangers of fame; on why she resists the term "comedienne"; on the value of oral histories; on her proudest career achievement; on her then-future plans and people she'd like to portray; on how she would like to be remembered.

2020-01-30

During the second hour of her interview with Jenni Matz, Tracey Ullman touches: On 'The Tracey Ullman Show' winning Emmy Awards, and on the end of the show; on the legacy of 'The Tracey Ullman Show', and on what she did in the years following the end of her show; on her special 'Tracey Ullman: A Class Act', and on how that show led to her HBO special 'Tracey Takes on New York' and 'Tracey Takes On...'. On directing episodes of 'Tracey Takes On...', and on her and her husband's ownership of the show; on the character "Chic" on 'Tracey Takes On...'; on going out into the real world in character; on playing "Mrs. Noh Nan Nang" on 'Tracey Takes On...'; on the writing team on 'Tracey Takes On...'. On specific episodes of 'Tracey Takes On...', and on portraying the royal family; on the end of 'Tracey Takes On...', and on how 'Tracey Ullman's State of the Union' came about; on playing celebrities and public figures on .State of the Union., and on how she decided which people and characters to portray, and on how she gets into character for impersonations. On her production schedule on 'Tracey Ullman's State of the Union' since she portrayed most of the characters on the show; on the end of 'Tracey Ullman's State of the Union'; on the death of her husband, Allan McKeown; on how 'Tracey Ullman's Show' came about, and on her impressions of Angela Merkel and Judi Dench; on the impact of Brexit on the show, and on getting political in her work. On why "Kay Clark" has appeared in all of her series; on playing Betty Friedan in 'Mrs. America', and on the 'Tracey Ullman's Show' sketch "What Were You Wearing?"; on the role of comedy in the then-current political climate, and on Mel Brooks appearing in a sketch on 'The Tracey Ullman Show'; on the power of comedy.

2020-01-30

In her three-hour-and-fifteen-minute interview Tracey Ullman talks about growing up in England and how she started doing impersonations as a kid. She discusses attending a performing arts school starting at the age of 12, leaving school at 16 to be a dancer in Berlin, and how she made the transition into acting. She details how she came to be cast in the improvised play "Four in a Million" and how that led to her being cast on a BBC sketch comedy show. She talks about her years as a pop star and meeting her husband, the late producer Allan McKeown, and moving to America. Ullman goes into detail on the creation of 'The Tracey Ullman Show', including how it began with meeting James L. Brooks, her concept for the show, and the casting process. She then shares stories from the run of 'The Tracey Ullman Show', with a discussion of a typical workweek, specific characters she created for the series, including "Kay Clark" and "Ginny Tilman", winning Emmy Awards for the series, and its eventual end and legacy. Ullman then moves on to her special Tracey Ullman: A Class Act and how that led to her HBO show 'Tracey Takes On…' For 'Tracey Takes On…' she talks about specific characters, directing episodes of the series, and the show's writing team. She then talks about her next series, 'Tracey Ullman's State of the Union', including why she decided to feature more impressions of celebrities and public figures and on getting more political in her work. Ullman discusses her then-most recent series 'Tracey Ullman's Show', talking about sketches that went viral and the characters she's carried throughout her series. She concludes by sharing how she gets into character, her writing process and how she collaborates with other writers, how the industry has changed since she started out, advice to aspiring performers, her proudest career achievement, and how she would like to be remembered. Jenni Matz conducted the interview in partnership with the American Comedy Archives at Emerson College on January 30, 2020 in North Hollywood, CA. Additional topics covered include: Advice, Characters & Catchphrases, Comedy Series, Comedians, Creative Influences And Inspiration, Criticism Of TV, Diversity In Television, Emmy Awards, Fame And Celebrity, First Big Break, Historic Events And Social Change, LGBTQ, MeToo Movement, New Media, Performers, Producers, Pivotal Career Moments, Pop Culture, Television Industry, Women, and Writers.

2020-01-30

The American Comedy Archives Oral Histories consists of audiovisual interviews conducted by comedian Bill Dana, archivist/historian Jenni Matz, comedian Eddie Brill, archivist/historian Robert Fleming, and television producer/professor Dan Pasternack with comedians, directors, writers, producers, agents, and experts on comedy. Oral history interviews were conducted with Bea Arthur, Ed Begley, Jr., Shelley Berman, Lewis Black, Kevin Bright, Eddie Brill, Jack Carter, Dick Cavett, Tim Conway, Irwin Corey, Norm Crosby, Billy Crystal, Bill Dana, Sam Denoff, Vin DiBona, Phyllis Diller, Diane English, Barbara Feldon, Budd Friedman, Larry Gelbart, Shecky Greene, Dick Gregory, Charles Grodin, Pat Harrington, Jr., Hugh Hefner, Buck Henry, Doug Herzog, Arte Johnson, Austin "Rocky" Kalish, Irma Kalish, Hal Kanter, Don Knotts, Norman Lear, Rose Marie, Peter Marshall, Dick Martin, Jamie Masada, Jackie Mason, Chuck McCann, Jayne Meadows, Carlos Mencia, Howard Murray, Jan Murray, Bob Newhart, Louis Nye, Gary Owens, Janis Paige, Bill Persky, Tom Poston, Carl Reiner, Jack Riley, Tony Roberts, Paul Rodriguez, Andy Rooney, Jay Sandrich, George Schlatter, George Shapiro, Leonard Stern, Howard Storm, Tracey Ullman, Dick Van Dyke, Dick Van Patten, Betty White, Fred Willard, Henry Winkler, Jonathan Winters, Steven Wright, and "Weird Al" Yankovic. The bulk of the interviews were originally recorded on DVcam tapes from February 2005 through May 2007 and duplicated at Emerson College. Some of the oral histories were done in conjunction with the American Television Foundation. In addition to the video oral histories there are transcripts for certain interviews.

2005-02-21 - 2020-01-30

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