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Essay The Popularity of The Burns and Allen Show

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Vaudeville was very popular from the late 1800s to the early 1900s in North America. Vaudeville shows were made up of many random acts that were placed together in a common play bill. Some acts were, for example, plays, clowns, jugglers, comedians, etc. Once the radio was introduced, vaudeville’s started to become less popular as the radio’s popularity started to increase. The radio started out with maximum five programs but as the demand for radios increased so did the amount of programs, which went up to almost 500. Radios was the place families and friends gathered to hear the news, sporting events, music, entertainment, etc. One show millions of people listened to was The Burns and Allen Show, starring George Burns and Gracie Allen.…show more content…
When Allen heard about the break up between comedian partners Lorraine and Burns, Allen decided to make a partnership between Lorraine. Confusing Burns for Lorraine, Burns accepted but did not tell Allen the truth. Three days into their partnership, Burns finally confessed to Allen about the mixing up of identities. However, Allen vowed to try and succeed in the comedy business with Burns as a partner. Starting out as vaudevillians, Burns and Allen performed in different theatres and later signed a five year contract with Keith Theater. Being known as the most popular acts in the United States, Allen was invited to be a guest star on the radio. When CBS noticed how talented Burns and Allen were on the radio, CBS offered a contract. The shift between theater and radio was an advantage in the development of domestic situation comedy. Domestic situation comedy gave the audience a sneak peek into Burns and Allen’s private lives, while pretending to be themselves during the performance. The Burns and Allen Show were soon in the top 5 shows, having millions of listeners weekly. Burns and Allen would at times do things that would really grab attention from the audience. For example, when she was looking for her “lost brother” George, Allen went from radio station to radio station announcing George’s disappearance. George was an accountant in San Francisco and was forced into hiding until the stunt died down. Another
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