MILTON BERLE - CONTRACT DOUBLE SIGNED 09/21/1948 CO-SIGNED BY: ALLEN ROTH, NAT HIKEN - HFSID 271117
Sale Price $360.00
THE DAY BEFORE HE MAKES HIS DEBUT ON TEXACO STAR THEATER, THE MAN WHO WOULD BECOME KNOWN AS "MR. TELEVISION" HIRES ALLEN ROTH AND HIS ORCHESTRA TO PERFORM ON HIS RADIO SHOW
MILTON BERLE, NAT HIKEN and ALLEN ROTH. Carbon DS: "Milton Berle" as Employer, "Nat Hiken" for Employer and "Allen Roth" as Orchestra Leader on first page and "Milton Berle" and "Nat Hiken" for Milton Berle Enterprises, Inc. and "Allen Roth" on last page and intitialed: "MB", "NH" and "A.R." on first page of affixed rider, 7p, 8½x11. Also signed twice by an Agent of the William Morris Agency, Inc. No place, but probably New York City, 1948 September 21. On letterhead of William Morris Agency. In part: "The employer hereby engages the artistic services of Leader (Roth), as a musical conductor, together with his orchestra consisting of 15 playing musicians including contractor for one radio program per week on the series of radio programs presently entitled, 'The Milton Berle Show' sponsored by the Texas Company. The Leader agrees that he will supply additional music, orchestral and incidental musical arrangements to be used and in connection with said program... Employer shall pay Leader and his orchestra a total sum of One Thousand ($1000.00) Dollars per week. Payments hereunder shall be made to me within twelve (12) days after each week's broadcast...This agreement shall commence on September 22, 1948 and shall continue for a period of 39 consecutive weeks...All broadcasts specified herein shall originate in New York, N.Y...." On September 22, 1948, the day this contract went into effect, Berle starred on the first episode of The Texaco Star Theater (1948-1956), which originally used rotating hosts until Berle's popularity made him the sole emcee of the program, which was renamed The Milton Berle Show. Roth was the musical conductor for that first broadcast. After only moderate success on radio and in films, MILTON BERLE (1908-2002) would dominate the airwaves on Tuesday nights until 1956, becoming known as "Mr. Television" and everyone's "Uncle Miltie". With the encouragement of the quintessential stage-mother, Berle had played small supporting roles in silents, including the part of a newsboy in the first-ever feature-length comedy, Tillie's Punctured Romance (1914), starring Charlie Chaplin. Berle then moved into vaudeville and became a headliner, with occasional stopovers on Broadway and in Hollywood, into the WWII years. His lengthy starring role in the 1943 edition of Broadway's Ziegfeld Follies established him as a star. NAT HIKEN (1914-1968) was an author, songwriter, director and producer who is best known for two successful TV sitcoms, The Phil Silvers Show and Car 54, Where Are You?, which he created, wrote, directed and produced. He also directed Your Show of Shows and directed and produced NBC Radio's The Magnificent Montague. His writing credits for films include Slapsie Maxie's (1939) and The Love God? (released in 1969, the year after his death). ALLEN ROSS and his orchestra were also heard on several albums, including Songs for My Beloved and All Star Color TV Review, Vol. 2. He died in 1972 at the age of 68. Lightly creased. First page lightly soiled. Two file holes at upper margins, ½-inch tear above left file hole on first page. Staple holes at upper left and right margins. Overall, fine condition.
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