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Sit down comedy

by: Leslie Bunder - Last updated: 2006-05-03

Ray Jessel

Ray Jessel

A Welsh-born Jew who emigrated to America to seek his fame and fortune in showbiz more than 50 years ago is returning back to British soil at the Theatre Museum in London's Covent garden on Thursday night.

Ray Jessel will be performing on the night with cabaret performer Holly Penfield as part of a series of events Transatlantic Talent: Best of Both Worlds.

Calling himself a 'sit-down comedian, Ray Jessel is 75-years-old and has only been performing his own work since he was 72. Prior to that his credits behind the scenes including work as a writer and producer for popular US TV shows including The Love Boat and The Dean Martin Show.

His songs have been covered by a multitude of performers including such legends as Louis Armstrong, and Jimmy Durante and he was the last lyricist to work with composer Richard Rodgers on I Remember Mama.

Despite leaving for Canada and then America when he was 23, Jessel still maintains his links with his family. A brother lives in Cambridge while cousins are in London as well as still in Cardiff.

Related link:

Theatre Museum