Anne Bancroft and Mel Brooks Sing “Sweet Georgia Brown” Live…and in Polish

The Captain and Tenille. 

Sonny and Cher.

Shields and Yarnell.

Bancroft and Brooks?

Not exactly, but one thing’s certain. Had married couple Anne Bancroft and Mel Brooks undertaken to co-host a television variety show in the 70’s or 80’s, they would’ve mopped up the era’s competition faster than you can say Mr Clean Sunshine Fresh.

Our best evidence is this clip from the 1983 Brooks-hosted episode of the BBC variety hour, An Audience with…  All the tropes of the once popular form—the celebrity `as audience plant, the staged spontaneity, the audience eagerly following direction—are on display in the lead up to the big pay off, a light-footed live rendition of Sweet Georgia Brown…in heavily accented Polish.

It definitely leaves one wanting more. (In which case, you could try your luck with Brooks’ remake of To Be or Not to Be, in which he and Bancroft play roles originated by Jack Benny and Carole Lombard).

Related Content:

The Critic: Hilarious Oscar-Winning Film Narrated by Mel Brooks (1963)

Johnny Cash: Singer, Outlaw, and, Briefly, Television Host

Woody Allen Boxes a Kangaroo, 1966

Ayun Halliday‘s will be performing live in Brooklyn Brain Frame later this month.  Follow her @AyunHalliday

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  • Adam says:

    O kurczę niesamowite! means: geepers it’s incredible! ;)

  • Oh, what a pair! Thirty years ago, and it breaks my heart to think of the love, gone forever. Happened to me, too: but we could never have shown this kind of chutzpah, nor given the world such absolute pleasure. Such talent, and so diverse – yet blending so well. That’s marriage for yer …

  • Melissa says:

    I’m a first generation Polish-American on my mother’s side (3rd generation Polish-American on my dad’s). We all love Mel Brooks. My mom’s favorite scene in any Mel Brooks movie is in To Be or Not To Be, at the beginning where they sing in Polish at the beginning. I wish I could show this to her right now!

  • Melissa says:

    I also remember this special behind-the-scenes thing I saw when he first was going to put the Producers on Broadway. I remember how he kept on showing off that Anne Bancroft was his wife. He kept on saying “Myyyyy wife. Annnnne Bancroft” It was very cute. lol

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