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Program for Line by Israel Horowitz

Flyer for Play Directed by Hiram

Book about Standup Comedians featuring Hiram


   
 

THE WORLD OF HIRAM

Welcome! You have just gained entry into the site of one of show business' most popular entertainers who you think you almost know: Hiram Kasten.

What's that? You say you know Hiram Kasten but his name isn't exactly a "household word?" Well, what is a household word anyway? Charmin is a household word! Believe this: the biggest names in show biz from Jerry Seinfeld on through are friends and fans of his. Hiram has always been considered by his peers the quintessential show business personality. The comedian's comedian.

From the day he was born in a little log cabin in the Bronx, Hiram Kasten was headed straight into comedy. The doctor slapped him and he did 5 minutes. Wearing glasses since kindergarten, he wasn't cutting the dashing figure he would later become. But he was certainly learning what was funny. For instance, every time a bully knocked him down he was certain it was funnier if he fell on his left side! Studying all the great entertainers on television, Hiram practiced each day in his room.

Hiram didn't do too well in school, but he was ready when he left home. He won the lead in the first play he auditioned for at CUNY, the first off-Broadway play he auditioned for in Manhattan ("Line" by Israel Horovitz - 13th St. Theatre), and one of the leads in the first sitcom he ever auditioned for in Hollywood ("Dr. Paradise" on CBS)! He was ready, though not sure for what.

At the Comic Strip on a snowy night in 1978, he was introduced by the emcee, a young fellow who just happened to be Jerry Seinfeld! Hello stand-up comedy! From there to emceeing at Catch A Rising Star and starring in his own Sunday night show at Dangerfield's for 5 years, Hiram joined that exciting new generation of comedians and gigged around the country laughing every day and night. It is during these years he developed his unique style of blending the modern comedic idiom with a healthy homage to the greats that came before. You watch his act and you say, "He's either the youngest old guy or the oldest young guy I've ever seen!"

In 1986, by now totally debauched, yet still tanned and slim, he married his long time sweetheart Diana Kisiel (they would broadcast together on Howard Stern's WNBC radio show) who insisted that it was time to leave the Bronx because Hollywood beckoned (!) and urged a move by their first anniversary. They loaded up the truck and they moved to Beverly ...Boulevard that is! Swimming pools, movie stars, and dozens of shuls. Since then, Hiram has guest starred on some of television's most popular programs. From Seinfeld (3 times), Mad About You (twice), and Everybody Loves Raymond to his recurring role as the friendly pharmacist, Mr. Piel, on 7th Heaven.

Hiram was hand-picked by producers Don Reo and David Cassidy to star in the Las Vegas production of The Rat Pack is Back at the Desert Inn. It was voted the Number #1 New Show in Las Vegas.

Hiram directed Bruce Smirnoff's award winning one man show, "Other Than My Health I Have Nothing!"; is in demand as a private acting coach, a frequent favorite on the Rubber Chicken circuit, and is featured in the new book, "I Killed."

...Hiram Kasten is always right where he wanted to be: behind your TV screen or on the stage of your nearest theatre -- or just talking about comedy -- and it's just what he was preparing to do when he was a kid. And every day is gravy.

 
 

 

The Rat Pack is Back program

Telegram from Jerry Seinfeld
 

When Hiram was opening in New York's off-Broadway with his one man show "Whose Act Is It Anyway!", Hiram's old pal Jerrry Seinfeld was already out west. This was back when they still sent telegrams, kids!