Danny Kaye

related topics
{film, series, show}
{album, band, music}
{day, year, event}
{son, year, death}
{game, team, player}
{country, population, people}
{work, book, publish}
{law, state, case}
{food, make, wine}
{service, military, aircraft}

David Daniel Kaminsky (January 18, 1913 – March 3, 1987)[1] was an American actor, singer, dancer, and comedian. He became extremely popular in films with his bravura performances of patter songs and for children's favorites such as The Inch Worm and The Ugly Duckling. He was the first ambassador-at-large of UNICEF.


Early years

Born to Russian Empire Jewish immigrants in Brooklyn named Jacob Kaminsky (father) and Clara Kaminsky (mother), Kaye became one of the world's best-known comedians. He spent his early youth attending Public School 149 in East New York, Brooklyn, where he began entertaining his young classmates with songs and jokes,[2] before moving to Thomas Jefferson High School, but he never graduated. He learned his trade in his teenage years in the Catskills as a tummler in the Borscht Belt.[2]

Kaye's first break came in 1933 when he was asked to become one of the "Three Terpsichoreans", a vaudeville dance act. He opened with them in Utica, New York using the name Danny Kaye for the first time.[2] The act toured the United States, then signed on to perform in the Orient. The experience of trying to entertain audiences who did not speak English is what brought him to the pantomimes, gestures, songs and facial expressions which eventually made him famous.[2] Sometimes it was necessary just to try to get a meal. Kaye's daughter, Dena, tells a story her father related about being at a restaurant in China and trying to order chicken. Kaye flapped his arms and clucked, giving the waiter his best imitation of a chicken. The waiter nodded his understanding, bringing Kaye two eggs.[2]

When he returned to the US, jobs were in short supply; Kaye struggled for bookings. One of the jobs was working with fan dancer Sally Rand. After the dancer dropped one of her fans while trying to chase away a fly, Kaye was hired to be in charge of the fans so they were always held in front of her.[2]

Full article ▸

related documents
Frankie Howerd
Corey Feldman
John Travolta
Tony Clifton
Kermit the Frog
Drew Barrymore
Melissa Joan Hart
Michael Richards
Liam Neeson
Jim Jarmusch
Bob Monkhouse
Cary Elwes
It Happened One Night
Jack Albertson
Academy Award for Best Director
Flash Gordon (serial)
Batman (1966 film)
Emma Watson
Paul Lynde
Gene Hackman
Yasujirō Ozu
Doctor Dolittle (film)
What's Opera, Doc?
Ralph Bakshi
Safety Last!
Conspiracy Theory (film)
Albert Brooks
Joanna Lumley
The Lady Eve