There was a young Jewish girl named Phyllis Naomi Hurwitz. Born to parents Abraham Hurwitz and mother Ann Ritz. Abraham was an education professor at Yeshiva University. Her parents encouraged Phyllis to perform. Her father had been named New York City’s “official magician” by Mayor La Guardia during the Great Depression. Her father taught her to perform special magic acts by the age of 13. She also received instruction in acrobatics, baton twirling, juggling, piano, violin and ice skating. Among the things that Phyllis was taught was what she really fell in love with. Ventriloquism was the skill she most wanted to do.
In the early 1950’s she was named a winner on the TV show “Arthur Godfrey’s Talent Scouts” for her puppetry. She started out with a sock puppet that she developed into a little lamb and subsequently named it “Lambchop”
Of course you never knew her as Phylliss, but you have always known her as “Shari Lewis” one of the most prolific Ventriloquists of our generation.
We will talk again next week.
Steve and JET