Steve Rossi

Steve Rossi

Original Name Joseph Charles Tafarella
Birth
Manhattan, New York County (Manhattan), New York, USA
Death 24 Jun 2014 (aged 82)
Las Vegas, Clark County, Nevada, USA
Burial Las Vegas, Clark County, Nevada, USA
Memorial ID 131729238 · View Source
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Entertainer. He received notoriety as an American stand-up comedian, most recognized with his partner Marty Allen. Born Joseph Charles Tafarella, he was discovered by comedian and sex symbol, Mae West when she saw him performing the lead in a 1953 performance of "The Student Prince" at the Los Angeles Civic Light Orchestra. Forming a nightclub act, they appeared at Ciro's, a popular venue in Los Angeles, before moving the show to the Sahara Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. West reported changed his stage name to "Steve Rossi" so that his long surname would not compete with her name on the hotel marquee. The pairing was a hit; following the Sahara engagement, they toured with the show for a couple of years. He then focused on his musical career, recording a couple of albums with his group, Steve Rossi and The Robinaires. However, he is best known as half of the comedy duo Allen & Rossi. Playing straight man to Allen starting in 1957, the act was an immediate hit. The duo performed at nightclubs and casinos throughout the United States, their popularity fueled by a staggering 44 television appearances on the “Ed Sullivan Show.” After the partnership with Allen resolved in 1968, he attempted to duplicate his success by forming a comedy duo with Joe E. Ross, but their act failed. He tried once more with black comedian Slappy White, the comedy team releasing the album, "I Found Me a White Man--You Find Yourself One." Despite the novelty of an interracial act, this pairing also failed to be a hit. Moving to Las Vegas, he continued to be a popular solo act on The Strip until just a couple of years before his death. Before starting his career, he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in communication, arts, and theater, along with Greek and Latin at Loyola Marymont University in Los Angeles and served in the United States Air Force.

Bio by: Miracle Mile Tim


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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Originally Created by: Miracle Mile Tim
  • Added: 22 Jun 2014
  • Find a Grave Memorial 131729238
  • Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Steve Rossi (25 May 1932–24 Jun 2014), Find a Grave Memorial no. 131729238, citing Palm Memorial Park, Las Vegas, Clark County, Nevada, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .