Billy Gilbert

Billy Gilbert

Hal Roach brought him to Hollywood to act, direct and write.

Biography in: "Who's Who in Comedy" by Ronald L. Smith, pg. 178-179. New York: Facts on File, 1992. ISBN 0816023387

Briefly performed as a female impersonator.

Had worked on Broadway as an actor, playwright, director and producer.

His father was a tenor, his mother a dancer for the Metropolitan Opera Company.

In his youth he quit school to join a successful children's singing troupe.

Known as a comedian, he also played a number of dramatic roles.

Thirteen year old adopted son, Barry, committed suicide after being scolded by his grandmother for letting his pet parrot escape from its cage.

Versatile actor who performed on the legitimate stage, vaudeville, movies, radio, television and burlesque.

Was a middleweight prizefighter.

Was born in a dressing room at the Hopkins Opera House in Louisville, Kentucky.

Worked often as a character actor in comedy shorts with comics like The Three Stooges, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, as did his contemporary, James C. Morton.