Shelley Berman, Comic And 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' Actor, Dead At 92

Shelley Berman, Comic And 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' Actor, Dead At 92

Legendary comedian Shelley Berman died early Friday morning at his home in California from complications of Alzheimer's disease.

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

Berman rose through the comedy ranks in the late 1950's and '60s as a "sit-down" comic, rather than the popular "stand-up" comedian. He also wrote sketches for Steve Allen; trained as a serious actor; performed improvisational comedy with Mike Nichols and Elaine May with Chicago's Compass Players (later named Second City); and made numerous TV appearances. 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. His 1959 album Inside Shelley Berman was awarded a gold record and became the first comedy album to win a Grammy. He would go on to appear twelve more times over four seasons.

Shelley Berman, with his wife Sarah. - www.shelleyberman.com pic via AFPLOS ANGELES, Sept 2 - Grammy winning and Emmy-nominated actor and comedian Shelley Berman, who recently played Larry David's father on Curb Your Enthusiasm, has died at the age of 92.

Berman received an Emmy Award nomination in 2008 for playing Nat David on Curb.

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He once said of his style: 'I was essentially a monologuist. He wasn't a joke teller nor a "sick" comedian.

By the end of the 1960s he had turned back to acting, His focus shifted back to acting, with touring stage productions and guest TV slots on TV shows including The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Boston Legal and LA Law.

"I was always one of those life-of-the-party boys", he admitted, "though I never stooped to wearing women's hats or lampshades". Berman recorded six more albums for Verve Records.

Berman was 92 years old. They also had a daughter, Rachel, who, along with his wife, survives him.

His son Joshua, months shy of his 13th birthday, died in the mid-1970s from brain cancer.

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