FUN FOR 12,000

Bing Crosby teams with Bob Hope
as Added Attraction at War Loan Show

A $2,667,237 Bond House

Purchasers Line Up Early to Enter Municipal Auditorium Arena

Vera Vague, Jerry Colonna, Skinnay Ennis and Frances Langford also delight fans.

Kansas City Times, Tuesday, June 5, 1945

The approximately 12,000 bond buyers who crowded into the Municipal Auditorium last night for the Bob Hope Seventh War Loan show laughed for one and one-half hours and left the Arena as one of the most hilarious crowds ever to see a war bond show in Kansas City.

An extra dividend for the bond buyers was the appearance of Bing Crosby on the program. It was the first time Bing and Hope had appeared together on a bond show.

Every available seat was taken early, and many folding chairs were added to accommodate those who streamed through the doors in seemingly endless lines.


They arrived with looks bespeaking their anticipation of a big evening, and they left with smiles of satisfaction.

Represented in purchases by the crowd to gain admittance was $2,667,237 worth of war bonds. This was the serious side of the picture, the side for which the popular radio troupe was brought here.

Hope, chewing gum, answered his introduction with the statement "It looks like dollar day."

Whether it was a surprise to the audience was a minor matter when Hope mentioned the name of his co-worker in films and partner of the golf course, Crosby. The crowd broke into frenzied applause a few seconds later when Bing trotted onto the stage.


One of the high spots was the pantomime in which Hope and Crosby gave their impression of "the meeting of two Kansas City politicians." Greeting each other with superficial smiles they immediately went about the task of ransacking each other's pockets.

Then the familiar Hope-Crosby banter began.

"We brought him out from Topeka in an iron lung," Hope said.

Bing bowed and sparred a bit with Hope, while they insulted each other.

"He's coming formal," Hope quipped. "He got a shirt on. Are you alone in there (Bing's suit) or are you dancing with someone?"

Hope left the stage and Bing sang the favorite "Accentuate the Positive." He followed with "Sentimental Journey," which was met with screams from the feminine part of the audience. Then came another favorite, "Too Ra Loo Ra," which Bing sang in Going My Way. He won an Academy award on that picture last year. A parody on "Don't Fence Me In" featured pointed remarks at Frank Sinatra.


Hope joined Crosby in a series of impressions, including Pepsi and Coca Cola; Pepsodent and Ipana; two farmers, and two long lost brothers.

Colonna appeared, and the three sang "If I Had My Way." The music was harmonious, and would have been good even without the clowning.

Hope carried the show with his excellent ad libbing. Early in the performance, he looked toward the balconies and said "Are those people painted up there? That's as close as a lot of you ever will get to heaven, so take advantage of it."

Charles Luckman, former Kansas Citian who is president of Pepsodent company, Hope's radio sponsor, was introduced.

"They tell me a criminal always returns to the scene of his crime," Luckman said. "All day long it's been telephone calls, mostly wanting tickets to the show. I was afraid it would be the Board of Education asking me to leave town again."


"It's really swell to be here," Hope added. "I'm really thrilled. Thrilled, nuts ... it's my sponsor's home town."

Noticing there were rows of seats behind the stage, Hope said, "Lousy seats. No politics. But you're really looking at the best side of me at that."

Jerry Colonna, the "man with the brush on his face," was greeted with tremendous applause. He sang a bit of "A-a-a-a-a-h Sweet Mystery of Life," "The Road to Mandalay" and a parody on "Caroline." Then he joined the orchestra, grabbed a trombone and did a good job on "Time on My Hands."


Frances Langford was dressed in a midriff gown of pale blue with big pink butterflies splashed over it. Sequins trimmed the brief-sleeved bodice. Her first song was "You Belong to My Heart," followed by "I'm in the Mood for Love." Then Hope stopped the band and told Miss Langford how beautiful she looked and asked her to dinner after the show.

"I'd like to, Bob," she replied, "but ... well, I'm hungry."

She finished with "It Had to Be You" and "I Hadn't Anyone Till You."

"You know," Vera Vague fluttered, "Frances Langford and I go to the canteen together, and really (peering around to make certain Miss Langford wasn't within hearing range) I dance with more boys than she does. Maybe that's because she waits until they ask her."


Trudy Euan, the "poor Merriam" heard on the Hope broadcast each week, sang at the beginning of the show, and Hope, behind her on the stage, did a snappy soft-shoe routine, posed for pictures, and generally clowned all over the stage. He even picked up a saxophone from one of the members of the orchestra for a bit of accompaniment.

Skinnay Ennis and his band opened the program with "hot" music. Skinnay and his wife, Carmene Ennis, are the vocalists. Her blues singing and Skinnay's "whispering" baritone pleased the enthusiastic crowd.

Tonight the Hope show will be broadcast from the Sedalia, Mo, army air base, it's final radio show this season. After the show, Hope and his cast will leave for the West coast. Crosby left for the East coast last night. Both stars will leave the country soon for overseas tours.

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