Called “The Man of a Thousand Voices” by legendary voice actor Mel Blanc, Rich Little has been entertaining audiences for over a half-century. His spot-on impressions and easy-going style have made him arguably the most famous impressionist in the modern era.
Rich Little Niagara Falls Show
Rich Little Impressionist Bio
Rich was born in Ottawa, Canada on November 26th, 1938 and he started doing impressions when he was a pre-teen. By the age of 17, he joined up with Geoff Scott and they were performing the nightclub circuit.
Over the next several years, Rich Little would expand his experiences to include amateur acting, becoming a successful disc jockey, and even being an usher so that he would have the time to hone his craft of doing impression. His big break came in 1963 when he released two comedy albums using dozens of voices. That led to appearances on The Judy Garland Show and several other series that built to a point in the 1970s where he was seemingly on TV every week despite not having his own show.
In 1976, Rich Little managed to get his own show, but it was short-lived. However, he continued to perform almost relentlessly and grabbed the spotlight again in 1981 with the comedy album, “The First Family Rides Again” which poked fun at then President Ronald Reagan. His impressionistic talents were such that he actually overdubbed the voices of Davin Niven in “Trail of the Pink Panther” and James Cagney in “Terrible Joe Moran” when the actors were unable due to illness to use their own voices effectively.
Perhaps his most brilliant work occurred in 1987 when Rich performed in “We the People 200: The Constitutional Gala” special on TV. Little managed to perform a wide variety of historical figures that included John F. and Robert Kennedy, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Edward R. Murrow and even Martin Luther King, Jr. However, it was perhaps his performance as Henry Fonda performing as Abraham Lincoln that was the most impressive along with performing a powerful speech as Winston Churchill.
By the 1990s, Rich’s television appearances had slowed down considerably, although he could be seen in various talk shows over the years continuing to get laughs by doing a wide number of impressions.
Rich Little Today
While the impressionist is arguably not nearly as popular as he was in the 1970s, you cannot tell that from his Las Vegas shows and tours of comedy clubs around the country. In 2007, Rich was the host of the White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner and he continues to do voice over work for animated series such as “Futurama” where he not only does impressions of many other celebrities and politicians, but he does his own voice as well.
Rich Little is still a vibrant force on the comedy circuit after 60+ years of performing professionally for audiences around the world. He also is very active in charities which include the Children’s Miracle Network and Juvenile Diabetes. There is even a special care nursery named after Rich at the Ottawa Civic Hospital.
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