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Female Comedians in Old Time Radio


It is believed that comedy as a creative theatrical expression began with the Greeks, although we can imagine that humor as a sign of intelligence was appreciated in early history. Comedy, like most theater, was historically dominated by men. Radio allowed for early women comedians to shine and be appreciated by a wider audience. 

Initially, women were partners with men in situational comedies, often their husbands, such as Gracie Allen and George Burns, Fibber McGee and Molly, and Ozzie and Harriet.

Comedy Couples

Married couple comedy was a mainstay of old time radio programming. This original OTRCAT.com compilation features all your favorite couples to laugh at and with including Burns and Allen, Ozzie and Harriet, Phil Harris and Alice Faye and many more funny duos.

Most sitcom roles for women centered around women in the home as housewives. Later, women-centered comedy shows like Our Miss Brooks and The Adventures of Maisie featured working women (often man-hungry) and their trials and tribulations, with laughs along the way. 

Comedians today owe a debt of gratitude to the early trail blazers on radio who broadened the comedic appreciation and representation.

Alice Faye Collection

She began her career as a singer and dancer in Vaudeville and later became the other half of Jazzman turned funny-man, Phil Harris. 

Ann Sothern Collection

This collection includes every available old time radio appearances of Ann Sothern including her signature role as the liberated American "dame" from Brooklyn in 'Adventures of Maisie'

Bea Benaderet Collection

As a young woman, Bea Benaderet joined the company of Orson Welles Campbell Theatre and later had many roles in radio and television.

Blondie

Blondie and Dagwood charmed the world as a typical married couple on the screen radio, and especially the funny-pages.

George Burns and Gracie Allen

One of the Most Beloved Couples in Radio, George was the brains but Gracie was the Star. 

Eve Arden in Old Time Radio Collection

Before she was everyone's favorite English teacher at Madison High School, she was tickling listeners' funny bones as a guest star.

Fibber McGee and Molly

Long lost episodes fell out of "Fibber's Closet". This is the most complete Fibber McGee and Molly collection to date. Laugh with over 450 hours of laughs with Jim and Marian Jordan as Fibber McGee and Molly in this classic radio sit-com. 

Minerva Pious
Minerva Pious appeared in Fred Allen Radio Broadcasts

Fred Allen moved from Vaudeville to radio and perfected his character over a number of years for several sponsors. One of his career highlights was a supposed feud with his good friend, Jack Benny

Irene Ryan
Irene Ryan appears on The Jack Carson Show

Hilarious Parody of the Life of a Showbiz Star! 

Judy Canova
Judy Canova Collection

A hillbilly, hog caller, and hayseed -- Judy Canova started her career in a traveling family group, usually yodeling, singing and playing guitar. The Judy Canova Show opened with a monologue and novelty song, and then broke out into sidesplitting half hour comedy skit.

Lucille Ball Collection

Before she became TV’s favorite redhead, Lucille Ball was a rising starlet who turned to radio work as a way to make ends meet. 

Marie Wilson Collection

Known as Irma in My Friend Irma, Marie Wilson made a career of playing ditzy but loveable blondes. 

Mary Livingstone
Mary Livingstone Collection

She got into radio to work with her husband Jack Benny, but Mary Livingstone was a popular character on her own.

The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet

The "adventures" of Ozzie & Harriet are based on the daily stuff that happens to all good suburban couples in family sitcoms.

Wacky Women and Deliriously Dizzy Dames in Old Time Radio
Features the kookiest women of old time radio. There are some members of the fairer sex can be less than sensible and at times downright wacky. From silly sisters to mental missies, this collection includes a wide variety of fun, exciting, and sometimes weird women!

Let us know if we missed one of your favorite female comedians from OTR!


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