Published: Sun, September 03, 2017
Entertaiment | By Minnie Bishop

Curb Your Enthusiasm actor Berman dies

Curb Your Enthusiasm actor Berman dies

Influential comedian and actor Shelley Berman, best known for bringing modern anxiety to early standup and playing Larry David's father on Curb Your Enthusiasm, died at his home in Bell Canyon, Calif., this morning, September 1.

Following Berman's death, a post was published on his website, listing various links of organizations offering information to Alzheimer's.

Comedian Shelley Berman, who won gold records and appeared on top television shows in the 1950s and 1960s delivering wry monologues about the annoyances of everyday life, has died. After training as an actor, he joined an improvisational company in Chicago, Compass Players, the beginning of the famed Second City. Coming from the golden era of comedy alongside the likes of Mort Sahl, Lenny Bruce and Bob Newhart, he appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show more than 20 times and became famous for his "sit-down" brand of comedy in which he sat on a barstool and told amusing stories while miming a telephone.

The Grammy victor and Emmy-nominated actor was one of the most successful stand-up comedians of the 1950s and '60s. Among the many tributes on social media, Steve Martin wrote, "Thank you, Shelley Berman".

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Comedian Shelley Berman, who received an Emmy nomination in 2008 for his role as Larry David's father on "Curb Your Enthusiasm", has died at age 92. He was nominated for an Emmy award in 2008 for his performance as Larry's partially-blind, oft-crotchety father. "Needless to say, I won my first comedian job at this very club".

"I had dreams of being an actor", he said in a 1960 interview. "I was never just a troublemaker". "I went to see him before even dreaming of being a comedian", Berman told the San Francisco Chronicle in 2010. That year he issued his first album, "Inside Shelley Berman". He was also passionate about writing, and in 2013, released a poetry book, To Laughter With Questions.

Berman is survived by his wife of 70 years, Sarah - whom he met while studying acting at the Goodman Theatre - as well as his adopted daughter, Rachel Berman, and two grandsons.

He retired from performing in 2014 after being diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease.

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