Larry Storch biography
SynopsisLarry Storch was born January 8, 1923 in New York City. He appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show in the late 1940s. He acted as emcee on Cavalcade of Stars in the early 1950s. Also around this time, he made his film debut in The Prince Who Was a Thief. In 1953, he got his own program, The Larry Storch Show. In the 1960s, he was on the show F Troop. More recently, he was in Sly Fox in 2004.
Early CareerActor. Born on January 8, 1923, in New York, New York. A veteran stand-up comic and character actor, Larry Storch is most commonly remembered for his work on the 1960s western comedy F Troop. A natural born mimic, he dropped out of school to pursue a comedy career at the age of 16. Over the years, Storch developed a popular comedy act.
One of his first appearances on television was on The Ed Sullivan Show in the late 1940s. Storch later filled in for Jackie Gleason as the emcee on Cavalcade of Stars, a popular variety show, in the early 1950s. Also around this time, he also made his film debut in The Prince Who Was a Thief (1951) with Tony Curtis. In 1953, he got his own program, The Larry Storch Show, which appeared as a summer replacement for The Jackie Gleason Show. Storch entertained viewers with characters from his stand-up act, such as television cowboy Smilie Higgins, as a part of the show.
In the later part of the decade, Storch worked on television, films, and the stage. He impressed audiences with his comedic talents on such programs as The Steve Allen Show. On Broadway, Storch appeared in the comedy Who Was That Lady I Saw You With? in 1958. (He later reprised his role for the 1960 film adaptation, which starred Tony Curtis, Dean Martin, and Janet Leigh.) The following year, he had a role in the war drama The Last Blitzkrieg (1959) with Van Johnson and Dick York.
F TroopIn the early 1960s, Storch had a recurring role on the police comedy series, Car 54, Where Are You? This was soon followed by his leading role as goofy Corporal Randolph Agarn on F Troop. Premiering in the fall of 1965, the show followed the exploits of a dysfunctional military unit at Fort Courage in the West. Agarn was in cahoots with Sergeant Morgan O'Rourke (Forrest Tucker) and the pair were involved in a number of schemes under the nose of their commander, Captain Wilton Parmenter (Ken Berry). The soldiers also had interesting encounters with Native Americans in the region, usually Chief Wild Eagle (Frank deKova) and Crazy Cat (Don Diamond). In addition to the series regulars, the show featured a number of guest stars, including Don Rickles, Paul Lynde, and Milton Berle. Storch received an Emmy Award nomination for his work on the series. While the show only lasted for two seasons, it developed quite a following and ran for years in syndication.
Storch's next television venture would not be as memorable. On the air for only five months in 1969, The Queen and I centered on the crew of aging cruise ship. Storch starred as Charles Duffy, the ship's scheming purser, who tries to save the fading vessel from the scrap yard.
In addition to acting on screen, Storch had a healthy career lending his voice to animated projects. He began as the voice of Koko the Clown in the early 1960s and later could be heard on episodes of The Brady Kids and Scooby Doo and Scrappy Doo in the 1970s.
Success on BroadwayIn the next decade, Storch returned to Broadway. He appeared in a 1983 revival of the musical Porgy and Bess. Taking on a more substantial role, Storch joined the cast of the 1986 version of the classic comedy Arsenic and Old Lace with Polly Holliday, Tony Roberts, Jean Stapleton, and Abe Vigoda. In 2001, Storch joined the cast of Annie Get Your Gun with Reba McEntire in the lead role as the famous female sharpshooter. While playing Chief Sitting Bull on a touring production of the show, he told Entertainment Weekly how his TV past sometimes caught up to him. "Even when I would come out under feathers, you'd hear people yelling from the balcony, 'Aaaaa-garn, where's F Troop?" It's embarrassing, but it's flattering."
More recently, Storch played the chief of police in the revival comedy Sly Fox in 2004. He also appeared in two films around this time, Bittersweet Place (2005) and Funny Valentine (2005) with Anthony Michael Hall.
Storch was married to his wife Norma for more than 40 years. The two had been through the highs and lows of his career together with her often acting as his manager. She died of cancer in 2003. The couple had one daughter together who they had given up for adoption long before they married. Storch also has a stepdaughter and stepson.