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Subject: ARCHIVE: August 12, 1949 ~Veteran vaudeville and Hollywood character actor Al Shean died 70 years ago today, made his fame on stage as comedy team of 'Gallagher & Shean', later as a popular film character actor, who on his side job was maternal uncle to famed Marx Bros, writing much of their early material, guiding his nephews through their early careers. Shean died 81. ...

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Date Posted: Monday, August 12, 01:24:50pm

Al Shean
[ Abraham Elieser Adolph Schonberg ]
(12 May 1868 – 12 August 1949)

Known as Al Shean, was a comedian and vaudeville performer. Other sources give his birth name variously as Adolf Schönberg, Albert Schönberg, or Alfred Schönberg. He is most remembered for being half of the vaudeville team Gallagher and Shean, and as the uncle of the Marx Brothers.

Biography …
Shean was born in Dornum, Germany, on 12 May 1868, the son of Fanny and Levi or Louis Schoenberg. His father
was a magician. His sister, Minnie, married Sam "Frenchie" Marx; their sons would become known as the Marx Brothers. …

After making a name for himself in vaudeville, Shean teamed up
with Edward Gallagher to create the act Gallagher and Shean in the 1920s. …

...While the act was successful, the men apparently did not like each other much.
After their act's final Ziegfeld Follies pairing, Shean went on to perform solo in
eight Broadway shows, even playing the title character in Father Malachy's Miracle.

Shean had some solo film roles: as the piano playing conductor known as "The Professor" in San Francisco (1936), as a priest in Hitler's Madman (1943), as grandfather in The Blue Bird (1940), and in some three dozen other films. He and Gallagher also made an early sound film at the Theodore Case studio in Auburn, New York, in 1925.

Shean, whose wife died in 1941, died August 12, 1949 in his modest Manhattan
hotel apartment, and was buried at Mount Pleasant Cemetery, in Hawthorne, NY. ...

Legacy …
Shean was survived by sons Lawrence, and Al Shean, who worked on TV's kiddie show "The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show".

Links …

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Subject Author Date
Here's Gallagher & Shean in the film "Atlantic City" (1944).Monday, August 12, 04:17:49pm

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