Radio stars (Sept 1933)

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RADIO STARS 0 Ted Bergman is the Lon Chaney of the air TED BERGMAN, the stuttering racketeer, Bolshevik, barking dog or what have you, in the Musical Grocery Store on the NBC chain is the Lon Chaney of the kilocycles. Give him any role you wish. He takes them as they come. Since 1928, Ted has played a thousand and twelve different characters. And those parts included everything from a gangster on the Crime Hour to the romantic lover on the Pages of Romance program. Twenty-two dialects, including the Scandinavian, are at his command, so he feels at home in any crowd. He's played as many as seven parts in one broadcast, using different dialects for each part. Such a talent comes in handy. Once there were only two people in a detective scene.; Ted and another actor who was playing the part of his father. They were both Irishmen with a brogue so thick you could spread it with a knife. As the crisis of the scene approached, the other actor fainted dead away, leaving Ted soloing before the mike. Did he get all hot and bothered? He did not! Ted immedi- ately picked up the other fellow's lines and finished out the scene, playing both parts, and nobody outside the studio knew the differ- ence. In addition to the roles he has created himself, Ted has appeared with Eddie Cantor, Rudy Vallee, Stoopnagle and Budd, Jane Cowl and many others. Do you remem- ber on the Chase & San- born hour when Rubinoff started talking back to Eddie Cantor? Well, that was Ted talking for Rubinof?. Coming down in the ele- vator after the show Rubinoff said, "You did noble, Ted, but what am I going to say next week ?" There are other things Ted can do. When he was a student at Columbia University in 1923, he was the inter- collegiate wrestling champion in the heavyweight division. Only once has he really been embarrassed. That was when he was playing with Jane Cowl in a radio version of the famous drama. "Within the Law." Everything was going along smoothly until Miss Cowl stopped right in the middle of the broadcast to ask for a drink of water. Ted got it for her. but he surely stej^ped fast. With a fellow like Ted Bergman, in the case of the Musical Grocery Store (9 p.m. Fridays, EDST), you needn't be surprised to find anything from a Chinese laundryman to an English duke in the .script. And if you hear some weird sound effects that you never heard be- fore, the chances are at least fifty-fifty that it's Ted. 31