Marty Allen

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Marty Allen
Marty Allen (comedian).jpg
Marty Allen (1960)
Birth name Morton David Alpern
Born (1922-03-23) March 23, 1922 (age 93)
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Medium Stand-Up, Television & Film acting
Nationality American
Years active 1950-present

Marty Allen (born Morton David Alpern; March 23, 1922) is an American stand-up comedian, actor, and veteran of World War II. He has worked as a comedy headliner in night clubs and as a dramatic actor in TV roles.


Allen was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to parents Louis and Elsie Alpern. He graduated from Taylor Allderdice High School in 1940 and was inducted into their alumni hall of fame in 2009.[1]

World War II

He then joined the U.S. Army Air Corps. He was stationed in Italy where he attained the rank of sergeant and earned a Soldier's Medal for his bravery during a fire which happened while a plane was being refueled. His heroism also earned him a full-dress parade.[2]


During the 1950s, Allen worked as an opening act for stars such as Sarah Vaughan, Eydie Gorme, and Nat King Cole. It was during this time that he became part of the comedy team of Allen & Rossi with Steve Rossi. That relationship lasted 16 years, and the popular duo parted ways amicably. They reunited for several shows in the 1990s.

That association produced a string of hit comedy albums, 44 appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show, and the film The Last of the Secret Agents? (1966).

In 1961/1962 Mr. Allen appeared on Broadway in "Let It Ride!" at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre and then went on to perform in the pre-Broadway tour of "I Had A Ball" and then opened on Broadway in 1964.[3]

He eventually began performing dramatic roles. His debut as a serious actor came on The Big Valley TV series as the hapless Waldo Diefendorfer. Allen appeared in several other dramatic productions, including Mister Jerico, The Ballad of Billie Blue and segment of Rod Serling's Night Gallery.[4][5]

Throughout the 1970s and into the 1980s, Allen made hundreds of television appearances, becoming a regular on Hollywood Squares. He appeared on Circus of the Stars, in a cameo on The Super Mario Bros. Super Show!, on game shows such as Password, and in ten made-for-television movies. He also appeared in theatrical films such as The Great Waltz (1972), Harrad Summer (1974) and A Whale of a Tale (1976).

During the 1980s and through to the present, Allen and his wife Karon Kate Blackwell, an accomplished singer-songwriter, teamed up to perform their musical comedy act to audiences around the country. In 2007, the duo began performing at the Gold Coast Casino, in Las Vegas and went on to perform at the Southpoint Casino, Palace Station, and on cruise ships. In 2015, Marty Allen & Karon Kate Blackwell continue to perform in venues around the country to overflow crowds, most recently at the Rampart Hotel/Casino [6] and The Downtown Grand in Las Vegas, NV.

Charitable work[edit]

In 1968 he made a "Hello Dere" tour of military hospitals in the United States (a tour named after a catch phrase he popularized). He repeated the tour annually until 1972. During the tours, he would talk with and entertain wounded soldiers who had just returned from Vietnam. He is also involved in a number of charitable causes including the American Cancer Society, The Heart Fund, The March of Dimes, Fight for Sight, Cerebral Palsy, and is on the board of the Epilepsy Foundation.

Sample Marty Allen joke[edit]

Old man walks into a brothel. Says to Madam, "I want a woman."

Madam looks shocked: "Mister, how old are you?"

"One hundred and two."

"I think you've had it."

"Really? Well, who do I pay?"


  1. ^ Hecht, Steve (August 27, 2009). "Comedian Marty Allen part of Allderdice's first hall class". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved July 18, 2012. 
  2. ^ ""Both Sides of Marty Allen" The Jewish Reporter, May 22, 2009" (PDF). [1]. May 2009. p. 30. Retrieved 2009-06-06.  External link in |work= (help)
  3. ^ "Broadway Database Marty Allen". Retrieved 2010-12-01. 
  4. ^ "Allmovie Database". Retrieved 2010-12-01. 
  5. ^ "IMDB Database". Retrieved 2010-12-01. 
  6. ^

External links[edit]