About this star

Gracie Allen

Next star: George Burns
Previous star: Ruth Roman


Publicity still of Allen from the Burns and Allen CBS Radio program

Gracie Allen was an American comedienne who became internationally famous as the zany partner and comic foil of husband George Burns. At a young age she began performing Irish folk dances with her three sisters, who were billed as "The Four Colleens." In 1909, Allen joined her sister, Bessie, as a vaudeville performer. At a performance in 1922 Allen met George Burns and the two formed a comedy act, which soon blossomed into a popular radio show.

In 1948, Comedian and friend Jack Benny convinced Burns and Allen (among others) to join him at CBS. The Burns and Allen radio show became part of the CBS lineup and a year later they brought their show to television. They continued to play themselves, only now as television stars.

In addition to Burns and Allen's television fame, they made several short films in the early 1930s, preserving several of their classic vaudeville routines. They also made two films with W.C. Fields, including International House (1933) and Six of a Kind (1934). In 1937, the couple starred with Fred Astaire in A Damsel in Distress, a musical with an original score by George Gershwin.

Fact file

  • Born: Grace Ethel Cecile Rosalie Allen July 26, 1895 San Francisco, California, U.S.
  • Died: August 27, 1964 (aged 69) Los Angeles, California, U.S.
  • Occupation: Actress/Comedienne
  • Years active: 1924–1958
  • Spouse(s): George Burns (1926–1964)

Read more about Gracie Allen at Wikipedia or at the Internet Movie Database

In the news

PLAYBILL VAULT’S Today In Theatre History: JANUARY 20
Playbill Combined , 2015-01-20 05:00:30
1896 Say good morning, George. Actually it was "Nathan" then — Nathan Birnbaum born today. As George Burns, he and Gracie Allen will become headliners of vaudeville. Together they will appear in films and their own television show. On his own, Burns will also have a successful film career.

Jack Benny was the everyman with uncanny timing
LA Times Entertainme, 2013-07-22 12:00:00
Classic Hollywood: Shout! Factory's new DVD set 'The Jack Benny Program: The Lost Episodes' features 18 restored episodes of his old show.Bob Hope was the wisecracker. Milton Berle was a clown. George Burns and Gracie Allen were farceurs of domestic life. And Jack Benny was the "Everyman" comedian.    

Olympic Viewing: Carillo's wild Bond ride
Yahoo Entertainment, 2012-08-06 03:41:07
The ride probably shaved a few weeks off Mary Carillo's life, but the look of sheer terror on her face as James Bond's Aston Martin briefly went airborne during a high-speed run through the English countryside is worth the agony. At least for viewers.

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