Fred Travalena

Fred Travalena


Fred Travalena
Live: South side of the 7000 block of Hollywood Boulevard
Impressionist | Singer
Born Oct. 6, 1942 in Bronx, N.Y.
Died June 28, 2009 of non-hodgkin's lymphoma in Encino, Calif.

Fred Travalena was a master impressionist and singer whose broad repertoire of voices ranged from Jack Nicholson to Sammy Davis Jr. to Bugs Bunny.

Dubbed "The Man of a Thousand Faces" and "Mr. Everybody," Travalena emerged on the national stage as an impressionist in the early 1970s.

Over the next three decades, he was a headliner in Las Vegas, Reno and Atlantic City, performed in concerts across the country, appeared on "The Tonight Show" and other talk shows and starred in his own specials, such as "The Many Faces of Fred Travalena" and "Comedy in the Oval Office."

The boyish-faced entertainer is said to have had a repertoire of more than 360 celebrity, political and cartoon-character voices, including Clint Eastwood, Dr. Ruth Westheimer, Joe Pesci, Robert De Niro, Henry Kissinger, Donald Rumsfeld, Johnny Mathis, Bruce Springsteen and Luciano Pavarotti.

Travalena reportedly was performing at a resort hotel in the Catskills when impressionist Rich Little was in the audience. After the show, Little congratulated Travalena and later recommended him for a spot in British celebrity journalist David Frost's show at the Riviera in Las Vegas.

Travalena joined Little, Frank Gorshin and other impressionists as a regular on the "ABC Comedy Hour," the 1972 comedy-variety show, which was known in reruns as the "ABC Comedy Hour Presents the Kopycats.

Travalena made occasional guest appearances on TV series such as "The Love Boat" and "Murphy Brown," as well as on "Hollywood Squares" and other game shows. He also did voices on a number of TV cartoon series and appeared in the 1978 movie "The Buddy Holly Story."

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