James Durante Obituary, Beloved Native Of Schenectady NY, Has Sadly Passed Away – Death – The world obits

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James Durante Obituary, Death – Born in Brooklyn, James Francis “Jimmy” Durante grew up in the lower east side. Durante’s childhood dream was to work as a saloon pianist. His father, a barber, gave him lessons on occasion and purchased a piano for him. Despite leaving school in the seventh or eighth grade to work a variety of jobs, Durante continued to study the piano, and at the age of seventeen, he fulfilled his dream of playing the piano at Diamond Tony’s Saloon in Coney Island, Brooklyn.

In 1923, he founded the Club Durant in New York alongside vaudevillians Eddie Jackson and Lou Clayton. Throughout the 1920s, the partners gave performances there and at other clubs. Durante appeared in films Roadhouse Nights (1929) and Broadway shows like Show Girl and The New Yorkers. In the 1940s, he appeared in a number of radio shows, such as “The Jimmy Durante Show” and “The Camel Comedy Caravan.

His catchphrase, “Good night, Mrs. Calabash, wherever you are!”—which he used to end a number of television programs in the 1950s, including “The Four-Star Revue,” “The All-Star Revue,” and “The Jimmy Durante Show”—became as well-known as his felt hat, cane, and frequent mispronunciations and malapropisms. His large nose became synonymous with him.
He appeared in the 1962 film adaptation of Jumbo in addition to his Broadway debut in the circus extravaganza Jumbo. He starred in his final movie, It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World, the following year. In 1972, Durante announced his retirement from performing due to a stroke that left him unable to move beyond a wheelchair. On January 29, 1980, he passed away in Santa Monica, California, from pneumonia.