Sunday, August 7, 2011


with Jerry Lewis

In Sept 2009, Jerry Lewis invited my wife Kathy and I to be among his personal guests at the annual MDA labor day telethon at the South Point hotel/casino in Las Vegas. I had first spoken with Jerry in 2006 when my book of Old Jewish Comedians was sent to him and he called to tell me how much he enjoyed it. Jerry had also enjoyed a visual tribute I created for the NY Observer, in which I had suggested that the motion picture academy give him a special career Oscar, and he again called me to thank me and requested a large print of the piece to hang in his home. I brought the print along to Las Vegas and presented it to Jerry that weekend, along with a copy he inscribed to me. We were  granted full access to Jerry and the show's backstage rehearsals. Jerry was incredibly generous with his time and couldn't have been kinder to both my wife and I.

This would be Jerry's second to last telethon before he was let go by the MDA.

Meeting Jerry. That's his longtime secretary, Penny to my right
Jerry in his Jazzy. Presenting the print to him
Jerry and I talk comedy and art
Jerry signs a print for me
The King of Comedy and me
I took some backstage photos. Jerry rehearses his Jolson medley with the orchestra
Jerry conducts as his pal Richard Belzer looks on

This is the piece that originally appeared in the NY Observer (Jerry has since been awarded a "Humanitarian" Oscar, for his charitable work on behalf of the MDA). It can be ordered as a large print here:

My illustration of Jerry Lewis created for my first book of "Old Jewish Comedians" (2006)


  1. What an honor! For Jerry and for you.

  2. To spend time with a hero is wonderful. To be respected and admired by him is beyond wonderful. Great memories, Drew!