Frank Ferrante

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Frank Ferrante (born Frank Vincent Ferrante; April 26, 1963) is an American stage actor, comedian and director known for his stage portrayals of legendary American comedian Groucho Marx in the Arthur Marx/Robert Fisher play Groucho: A Life in Revue and his own touring An Evening With Groucho.

Biography[edit]

Born in Los Angeles, California, Frank Ferrante was raised in Sierra Madre, California [1] by the offspring of Italian immigrants Dominic and Theresa (Torres) Ferrante. His father was a stockbroker; his mother a housewife and preschool teacher. He attended Catholic schools including Christian Brothers-run La Salle High School in Pasadena, California where he first performed comedy.

Career[edit]

Discovered in 1985 by Groucho's son playwright Arthur Marx [2] when Ferrante was attending the University of Southern California Division of Drama, Ferrante went on to portray Groucho from age 15 to 85 in the New York, London and PBS television versions of Arthur's play. Ferrante was 23 years old when Groucho: A Life in Revue opened off-Broadway at the Lucille Lortel Theatre in 1986.[3]

Ferrante played the Groucho inspired roles off-Broadway in The Cocoanuts in 1996 and regional productions of Animal Crackers at Goodspeed Opera House,[4] The Huntington Theatre, Atlanta's Alliance Theatre, Paper Mill Playhouse [5] and Arena Stage.

Ferrante acts and directs throughout the regions most notably at Philadelphia's Walnut Street Theatre where he directed and developed the premiere of the Pulitzer Prize finalist Old Wicked Songs. There Ferrante starred as playwright/director George S. Kaufman in the one-man play written by Frank entitled By George.

Since 2001, Ferrante performs his improvisationally based comedy in the European style cirque show Teatro ZinZanni [6] playing an outrageous Latin lover named Caesar. In Zinzanni, Ferrante played opposite legendary cabaret star Liliane Montevecchi, Joan Baez, Sally Kellerman and The Motels' Martha Davis. In 2004, he became a question on the television program Jeopardy.

Awards and nominations[edit]

  • 1987 New York Theater World Award (For Outstanding New Talent) [7]
  • 1987 New York Outer Critics Circle Nomination (Most Striking Debut)
  • 1987 Laurence Olivier Award Nomination (Comedy Performance of the Year) [8]
  • 1992 Connecticut Critics Circle Award (Best Actor in a Musical)
  • 1999 Connecticut Critics Circle Award (Best Actor in a Play)
  • 1999 Helen Hayes Award Nomination (Best Actor in a Musical)

References[edit]

External links[edit]