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Fred Allen and Portland Hoffa on Radio Stars, February 1935 When Fred Allen met Portland Hoffa on the vaudeville circuit in 1922, he was telling jokes and performing badly as a juggler. She was a dancer. The two future comedy stars hit it off because of a conversation about her name: "I'm a doctor's daughter," Hoffa advised him. "My father named me after the city where I was born. Out in Oregon, you know." "I know," said Allen. ''You ought to be glad you weren't born in Terre Haute or ... (read more
Fred Allen and Portland Hoffa on the February 1935 Radio Stars magazine The day of which I write was approximately five years ago. It was behind the scenes of The Passing Show, a fleshy, flashy piece of rhinestone entertainment on pre-Depression Broadway. It was one of those days on which stars have headaches, hoofers get runs in their stockings, and comedians look as full of joie de vivre as Egyptian mummies. It was a day on which a tall young man called Fred Allen, despondently leaning ... (read more