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PETER SELLERS & DEAN MARTIN – 1973 – “The Elephant Sketch”

Peter Sellers & Dean Martin – 1973 – “The Elephant Sketch” –

Ya’ gotta’ love Peter Sellers and Dean Martin together. Two of the greats of the entertainment business. Take a moment and enjoy this very funny sketch.

Peter Sellers was born on 8 September 1925, in Southsea, a suburb of Portsmouth. His parents were Yorkshire-born William “Bill” Sellers and Agnes Doreen “Peg”. Both were variety entertainers. Although christened Richard Henry, his parents called him Peter, after his elder stillborn brother. Sellers remained an only child. Peg Sellers was related to the pugilist Daniel Mendoza (1764–1836), whom Sellers greatly revered, and whose engraving later hung in his office. At one time Sellers planned to use Mendoza’s image for his production company’s logo.

Sellers was two weeks old when he was carried on stage by Dick Henderson, the headline act at the Kings Theatre in Southsea: the crowd sang “For He’s a Jolly Good Fellow”, which caused the infant to cry. The family constantly toured, causing much upheaval and unhappiness in the young Sellers’s life.

In 1935 the Sellers family moved to North London and settled in Muswell Hill. Although Bill Sellers was Protestant Peg was Jewish, Sellers attended the North London Roman Catholic school St. Aloysius College. The family was not rich, but Peg insisted on an expensive private schooling for her son.

Peter was fascinated, puzzled, and worried by religion from a young age, particularly Catholicism. Later in his life, Sellers observed that while his father’s faith was according to the Church of England, his mother was Jewish, “and Jews take the faith of their mother.” He held a guilt complex about being Jewish and recalls that Peter was once moved to tears when presented with a candlestick from a synagogue for Christmas, believing the gesture to be an anti-Jewish slur.

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One Response to “PETER SELLERS & DEAN MARTIN – 1973 – “The Elephant Sketch””

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