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    Posted August 12, 2014 by
    RobertZavala
    Location
    California
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    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    In Memoriam

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    A Robin Williams Memory

     
    In early1977 I was working for the Prop Dept. at NBC Studious in Burbank, CA. The show I was on was a summer replacement re-make of Laugh-In. During rehearsals of the first and only show aired, I remember, at first, none of the bits being rehearsed in front of camera as being very funny.
    And then I saw him, a guy off to the side in an unlit area of the stage. He was standing next to a huge box of hats with three or four people standing next to him who were laughing hysterically.
    I had to see what was so funny, so I walked up to join the little group. Everyone's focus and laughter was directed at this guy, who was reaching into the box, selecting a hat at random, putting it on his head and exploding into a spontaneous bit.
    With each choice of hat, he would instantly go into a different character and rapidly fire off a couple lines. Each persona was as funny or funnier than the previous. This guy was insane, and it was the funniest thing I had ever seen!
    This new talent was, of course, Robin Williams. And for the next few days, it seemed he never stopped being funny especially off camera. He did not have an "off switch".
    The world had not yet seen him, but all of us on that crew kept saying to one another, "This guy Robin is going to be big!"

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