STEVE ALLEN - TYPED LETTER SIGNED 01/14/1993 - HFSID 270132
Sale Price $234.00
Steve Allen sends a typed letter to Phyllis Diller inviting her to accept an award from the Portals.
Typed Letter Signed: "Steve", 1 page, 8½x11. Van Nuys, California, 1993 January 14. On imprinted letterhead to comedienne and actress Phyllis Diller, Los Angeles, California. Begins: "Dear Phyllis". In full: "There is an outstanding group in Los Angeles that is helping the homeless mentally ill to become independent productive citizens. I know their programs and believe they are dedicated, caring professionals. Portals has a 36 year record of distinguished service to our community. It is my privilege to invite you, on behalf of the Board of Directors of Portals, to be the recipient of the Golden Bell Award for 1993. I was honored to be one of the past recipients. My fellow past honorees include Daniel J. Travanti, Buzz Aldrin, and Jeanette Rockefeller. The award would be presented at the 37th Anniversary dinner to be held on May 20, 1993. I know you are deserving of this honor because of your contributions to improving the human condition through your involvement with other issues. Please let me know at your earliest convenience that you will be the Golden Bell Honoree for 1993. Sincerely". In the year he signed this letter, Allen appeared on two television specials: The Unknown Marx Brothers and Mo' Funny: Black Comedy in America. Breaking into showbiz as a radio disc jockey, the multitalented STEVE ALLEN (1921-2000) learned that inserting humor would draw a lot more attention to himself than merely announcing. In order to supply himself with an endless stream of material, he memorized every joke book and "college humor" magazine that he could get his hands on; the result was his uncanny ability to conjure up precisely the right wisecrack at the right time. Allen received his first network exposure in 1949, and was also featured in several films, including Down Memory Lane (1949) and I'll Get By (1950). In 1953, he was hired to host a local late-night program on New York's WNBC-TV, which later developed into the NBC network's Tonight Show. Allen was also an accomplished composer and piano player, and filled up his spare time by writing books, plays and magazine articles. Comedienne PHYLLIS DILLER (1917-2012), known for her outrageous appearance, zany outfits, distinctive laugh and a stand-up act that featured frequent references to her fictional husband, "Fang", and zingers about her sex appeal and numerous plastic surgeries, got her big break in March 1955 (at age 37), when she debuted at San Francisco's Purple Onion club. A subsequent appearance on The Tonight Show hosted by Jack Paar launched her national career, which got a big boost after Bob Hope saw Diller in a Washington, D.C. club. A favorite of the comedian, Diller would appear in three of Hope's films and 23 of his TV specials. Diller, who recorded her first comedy record album in 1959, took her groundbreaking "funny hausfrau" act to nightclubs and television variety shows and specials and she also appeared on the big screen. Her feature film credits include Splendor in the Grass (1961), The Fat Spy (1966), Boy, Did I Get a Wrong Number! (1966), The Sunshine Boys (1975) and The Silence of the Hams (1994), and she provided the voice of the Queen in A Bug's Life (1998). By 2000, the comedienne, who had trained as a concert pianist before her marriage (1939-1965) to Sherwood Anderson Diller, had appeared as a piano soloist with 100 symphony orchestras across the U.S. Despite retiring from nightclub/stage tours in May 2002 at the age of 84, Diller continued to make films (Motorcross Kids, 2004; Forget About It, 2005) and occasionally appear on TV programs, including two episodes of 7th Heaven (2002, 2003) and a guest shot on The Wayne Brady Show (2004). Lightly creased with folds, not at signature. Minor black marks at blank portions. Fine condition.
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