Entertainment

AUDIO: Jerry Stiller takes on standup at 83

Comedian Jerry Stiller was at the Richmond Hill Centre for the Performing Arts north of Toronto on Tuesday to perform standup, a task he's always wanted to take on.

Comedian Jerry Stiller became a household name at 66 playing Frank Costanza on Seinfeld, but that was just one of many coups for the actor, whose career stretches back half a century.

In an interview with Jian Ghomeshi of CBC's cultural affairs show Q, Stiller recalled his first brush with vaudeville and how he first drew laughs playing Adolf Hitler in heaven in a Second World War-era high school production.

Stiller was in Toronto on Tuesday to perform standup at the Richmond Hill Hill Centre for the Performing Arts. Solo standup up is a skill he's always wanted to take on, he said.

"I always wanted to work alone. It was an ambition, and I never did get to it," he said.

That's because his wife, fellow comedian Anne Meara, would follow him to gigs and heckle him from the audience.

As the comedy duo Stiller and Meara, they performed on the Ed Sullivan Show and had a 1980s TV show. They even have stars together on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Currently they are taking their brand of improv to the internet with a set of webisodes where they debate topics as serious as Thanksgiving and Justin Bieber.

"At this point, it's almost like being back in the business, but on the internet — an 83-year-old man and his 80-year-old wife, and they have their own show," he said.

Stiller also starred in King of Queens and has appeared with his son, Ben Stiller, in films such as Zoolander.

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