Tag Archives: Groucho

Comedians

‘Marx Brothers’, five 20th-century ‘American’ comedians, born in ‘New York City’. The brothers were known by their professional names: ‘Chico Marx’ (born Leonard, 1891-1961), ‘Gummo Marx’ (Milton, 1892-1977), ‘Harpo Marx’ (Adolph, also known as Arthur, 1893-1964), ‘Groucho Marx’ (Julius, 1895-1977), and ‘Zeppo Marx’ (Herbert, 1901-1979).

The ‘Marx’ brothers began their careers in vaudeville as the ‘Nightingales’. Later the four oldest brothers appeared with their mother and aunt as the ‘Six Mascots’, then billed themselves as the ‘Marx Brothers’. (Zeppo, the youngest, replaced ‘Gummo’ in the act before the group became stars on ‘Broadway’ and in motion pictures). The brothers appeared in a number of film comedies noted chiefly for their zany sight gags. Such films include ‘Animal Crackers’ (1930), ‘Horse Feathers’ (1932), and ‘Duck Soup’ (1933). After ‘Zeppo’ retired in (1933), ‘Harpo’, ‘Chico’, and ‘Groucho’ appeared with great success in ‘A Night at the Opera’ (1935), ‘A Day at the Races’ (1937), and ‘Room Service’ (1938). Their last film as a team was ‘Love Happy’ (1950).

Each brother had readily identifiable characteristics. For example, ‘Groucho’ had a caustic wit and usually appeared with a cigar and mustache; ‘Chico’ spoke in an ‘Italian’ accent and played the piano; ‘Harpo’ communicated in pantomime and played the harp.

After the brothers ceased making films, ‘Groucho’ continued his entertainment career as master of ceremonies of the television series ‘You Bet Your Life’. He wrote the autobiographical ‘Groucho and Me’ (1959) and ‘Memoirs of a Mangy Lover’ (1964). ‘Harpo’ published his autobiography, ‘Harpo Speaks’, in (1961). The brothers inspired the musical ‘Minnie Boys’ (1970), which was coauthored by ‘Groucho’ son ‘Arthur’.

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