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Throughout the 1930âs Abbott and Costello built and polished their act in vaudeville and burlesque theaters, using well-known vaudeville routines.
In 1938, they came to national prominence after performing on the radio show The Kate Smith Hour, which lead to Abbott and Costello signing a movie contract with Universal Studios the next year.
This is many times better than getting an Oscar,” Costello said at the time of the announcement.
“You can win an Oscar and a couple of years later it’s, ‘Goodbye Sam.’” Two years after Abbott and Costello teamed up in 1936, they first performed “Who’s on First?
“And there are two men who have made a very unique contribution to the game in a lighter vein. “One of the great classics of comedy is a routine that is practically synonymous with their name – it’s called ‘Who’s on First?
’” Wearing their appropriate baseball outfits, the 58-year-old Abbott and the 50-year-old Costello bounded on stage.
They were famous for their rapid-fire verbal exchanges, and Costelloâs clownish view of the world.
Their perfectly balanced energy catapulted them from burlesque and vaudeville stages to radio, and eventually Hollywood.I mean the initial idea is just a first baseman named ‘Who.’ And then you get the ‘What,’ then the ‘I Don’t Know,’ and it keeps going. That’s what makes this great." “We’re mighty proud of making people laugh,” Costello added. We don’t drag in any lessons in government or something.We approve of all that, of course, but we’re out for entertainment and not instruction.” Today, the mounted gold record of “Who’s on First?The famous comedy team of Abbott and Costello would break up less than a year later, the official word coming on July 15, 1957.“Dance with Me, Henry,” the last of their 36 films together, would be released in December 1956. “We try to take care of this, which seems to be their favorite pastime.” Any great comedy is how far can you take this silly idea.