George & Gracie Burns
D.O.B.: January 20, 1896 (New York, NY)
D.O.D.: March 9, 1996 (Los Angeles, CA)
Cause of Death: Natural Causes
D.O.B.: July 26, 1902 (San Francisco, CA)
D.O.D.: August 27, 1964 (Hollywood, CA)
Cause of Death: Heart Attack
Location: Forest Lawn Glendale; Freedom Mausoleum; Sanctuary of Heritage
Usually working as part of a song-and-snappy-patter team, he was in the process of breaking up with his latest partner Billy Lorraine in 1922 when he met a pretty young singer/dancer named Gracie Allen.
The game plan for this new team was to have Gracie play the "straight man" and George the comic, but so ingenuous and lightheaded was Gracie's delivery that the audience laughed at her questions and not at George's answers. Burns realized he'd have to reverse the roles and become the straight man for the act to succeed, and within a few years Burns and Allen was one of the hottest acts in vaudeville, with George writing the material and Gracie garnering the laughs.
George and Gracie married in 1926; thereafter the team worked on stage, in radio, in movies (first in a series of one-reel comedies, then making their feature debut in 1932's The Big Broadcast) and ultimately in television, seldom failing to bring down the house with their basic "dizzy lady, long-suffering man" routine
Gracie decided to retire in 1958, after which George went out on his own in television and in nightclubs. After Gracie's death in 1964, George concentrated on television production including Mr. Ed.
His performance as a cantankerous old vaudeville comic won him an Oscar, and launched a whole new career for the entertainer as a solo movie star.
Even after reaching his centennial year, Burns remained as sharp-witted as ever. Less than three months after his 100th birthday Burns passed away.
"The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show" (1950)
"Oh God" (1977)
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