John Conte (actor)

John Conte (actor)

John Conte (15 September 19154 September 2006) was a stage and film actor and television broadcaster.

Conte was born in Palmer, Massachusetts. His family moved to Los Angeles, California when he was a teenager. After he graduated from Lincoln High School he began working as a radio actor and singer. One of his first regular roles was on the "Burns and Allen" radio show in the 1940s.

In 1947 he appeared in Rodgers and Hammerstein's short-lived Broadway musical "Allegro". He returned to Broadway in 1950 to appear in the musical "Arms and the Girl".

Conte's television career began with an appearance with Sid Caesar on "Your Show of Shows" in the early 1950s. He hosted "Matinee Theater", a live-drama series on NBC that was one of the first daytime shows on network television.

His major film role was "Drunky" in the 1955 movie "The Man with the Golden Arm".

In 1968 he and his wife, Sirpuhe Philibosian Conte, launched KMIR-TV, a UHF station in the Palm SpringsRancho Mirage market. The station affiliated with NBC.

The Contes built KMIR into the third-largest station in the Coachella Valley. They sold the station to Milwaukee-based Journal Communications in 1999.

Conte also was a founding sponsor of the Eisenhower Medical Center in Rancho Mirage and was one of the founders of the McCallum Theatre in Palm Desert, California.

Conte died of natural causes at the Eisenhower Medical Center, aged 90.


* [,1,190091.story?coll=la-headlines-pe-california Rourke, Mary. (2006, September 7). "John Conte, 90; Stage, Screen, Radio Actor Founded the NBC Affiliate in Palm Desert". The Los Angeles Times]

* Associated Press. (2006, September 8). "John Conte, 90, Actor on Stage and TV". The New York Times, page A25

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