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Durante (Jimmy) papers
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Jimmy Durante had a decades-long career as a musician, songwriter, comedian, and actor. The collection consists of script material, scrapbooks, photographs, written music, audio recordings, printed material and ephemera, and a small amount of correspondence documenting Durante's extensive career as an entertainer on stage, radio, film, and television.
Born James Francis Durante in 1893 on the Lower East Side of New York to working-class Italian immigrant parents, Durante had began his performing career playing for parties at age 15, and by 1910, was performing in clubs on Coney Island. He worked for numerous clubs in New York City, performing with the Original New Orleans Jazz Band and Jimmy Durante's Jazz Band. In 1923, with partners Eddie Jackson, Harry Harris and Frank Nolan, he opened Club Durant, where he, Jackson, and Lou Clayton developed the raucous comedy act that would bring them fame on Vaudeville stages as Clayton, Jackson, and Durante. The trio made their Vaudeville debut in March of 1927, and went on to headline at the Palace Theatre and appeared in Florenz Zeigfield's revue Show Girl, in 1929.
150 Linear Feet (342 boxes)
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