Edgar Bergen

Edgar Bergen

Real Name:
Edgar John Bergen
Profile:
Born: February 16, 1903, Decatur, Michigan, USA
Died: September 30, 1978, Paradise, Nevada, USA

An American actor and radio performer, best known as a ventriloquist and also the father of actress Candice Bergen.

He grew up in Decatur, Michigan. He taught himself ventriloquism from a pamphlet when he was 11. A few years later, he commissioned Chicago woodcarver Theodore Mack to sculpt a likeness of a rascally Irish newspaperboy he knew. The head went on a dummy named Charlie McCarthy (2), who became Bergen's lifelong sidekick.

His first performances were in vaudeville. He worked in one-reel movie shorts, but his real success was on the radio. He and Charlie were seen at a New York party by Elsa Maxwell for Noël Coward, who recommended them for an engagement at the famous Rainbow Room. It was there that two producers saw Bergen and Charlie perform. They then recommended them for a guest appearance on Rudy Vallée's program. Their initial appearance (December 17, 1936) was so successful that the following year they were given their own show, as part of The Chase and Sanborn Hour. Under various sponsors (and two different networks), they were on the air from May 9, 1937 to July 1, 1956. The popularity of a ventriloquist on radio, when one could see neither the dummies nor his skill, surprised and puzzled many critics, then and now. Even knowing that Bergen provided the voice, listeners perceived Charlie as a genuine person.
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Artist

Edgar Bergen Discography

Albums

615 Edgar Bergen The Chase And Sanborn Show (Original Radio Broadcasts)(LP) Mark56 Records 615 US 1974 Sell This Version
MR-1034 Edgar Bergen The Edgar Bergen Show With Charlie McCarthy(LP) Radiola MR-1034 US 1974 Sell This Version
MLP-713 Edgar Bergen & Charlie McCarthy (2) Edgar Bergen & Charlie McCarthy (2) - When Radio Was King! (Edgar Bergen & Charlie McCarthy)(LP, Album) Memorabilia Records MLP-713 US 1974 Sell This Version
MR-1096 Edgar Bergen And Charlie McCarthy (2) Edgar Bergen And Charlie McCarthy (2) - Fractured Fairy Tales(LP) Radiola MR-1096 US 1979 Sell This Version
123 Edgar Bergen And Charlie McCarthy (2) Edgar Bergen And Charlie McCarthy (2) - The Last Show Ever Aired(Cass, Album) Radio Reruns 123 USA & Canada 1979 Sell This Version
637 Edgar Bergen And Charlie McCarthy (2) Edgar Bergen And Charlie McCarthy (2) - The Charlie McCarthy Show(Cass, Album) Radio Spirits 637 US 1995 Sell This Version
1956 Edgar Bergen And Charlie McCarthy (2) Edgar Bergen And Charlie McCarthy (2) - The Edgar Bergen And Charlie McCarthy Hour(Cass, Album) Radio Spirits 1956 US 1996 Sell This Version
EB 591 Edgar Bergen Laugh And Learn Lessons In Ventriloquism Edgar Bergen With Charlie McCarthy And Mortimer Snerd(LP) Juro Celebrity EB 591 US Unknown Sell This Version

Singles & EPs

RR-4H-5305 Edgar Bergen, Charlie McCarthy (2), W.C. Fields, Clark Gable, Dorothy Lamour, Mary Pickford, James Stewart, Mae West Edgar Bergen, Charlie McCarthy (2), W.C. Fields, Clark Gable, Dorothy Lamour, Mary Pickford, James Stewart, Mae West - Chase & Sanborn 100th Anniversary Radio Show(12") Not On Label RR-4H-5305 US 1964 Sell This Version
Top Ten 3 Edgar Bergen, Charlie McCarthy (2) Edgar Bergen, Charlie McCarthy (2) - Edgar Bergen And Charlie McCarthy(10") Top Ten Records Top Ten 3 Unknown Sell This Version

Compilations

178 Edgar Bergen And Charlie McCarthy (2) Edgar Bergen And Charlie McCarthy (2) - Charlie McCarthy Show(Cass, Comp) Favorite Old Radio Programs 178 US Unknown Sell This Version