Noted stand-up comedian Jackie Mason dies at 93

Jackie Mason was one of the last of the Borscht Belt comedians

Jackie Mason, the sometimes controversial standup comedian who unapologetically embraced Jewish themes and political incorrectness died on Saturday in Manhattan, at the age of 93.

According to Fox News, the news of his death was confirmed by his friend and lawyer Raoul Felder. He died at Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan Saturday, with his wife Jyll and a few friends by his side. There will be a small, private funeral service Sunday in New York, said Felder, who declined to name the location. A larger, public memorial service is expected at a later date, the lawyer noted.

An emotional Felder said, “We shall never see his like again. This was a mold that was broken. We’re going to miss him.”

As per Fox News, Mason was born in Sheboygan, to immigrant parents from Belarus. The family moved to Manhattan when little Yacov Moshe Maza, as he was then known, was just 5-years old.

An ordained rabbi, Mason was frequently stopped on the street wherever he went, and always took the time to listen, Felder said.

“He spoke to everybody and listened to their troubles. He used to listen to all the waiters’ complaints,” recalled Felder, who wrote a series of books with Mason.

He was even the favorite comedian of the Queen Mother and Prince Charles and performed frequently for the royals.
Mason once caused a stir after one performance for the Queen Mother, when he refused to wait afterward and bow to her, recalled Felder, who described Mason as “very smart and very opinionated.”

His famed one-man show, ‘The World According to Me!’ made him a triumph of Broadway in the 1980s, and in 1968, he was banned from ‘The Ed Sullivan Show’ after the host mistakenly believed Mason gave him the middle finger during an interruption.

Mason was one of the last of the Borscht Belt comedians, and he married that sensibility to strong views on racial and ethnic politics. 

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