The Red Skelton Museum of American Comedy honors the legacy of a man who touched numerous lives through his comedic talent, great works, compassion and commitment to public service. As a museum, the RSMAC reflects history, ideas, innovation, discovery, diversity, creative expression and democracy in celebration of the exceptional man whose greatest ambition was to bring joy to countless audiences.
The Red Skelton Museum is a testament to the impact one man can have on the lives of others. Red’s life story parallels definitive moments in American history which hold lessons for us all as citizens. From his career in vaudeville, in radio, television and film, we see the character of man emerge which reminds us of the importance and value of our individual roles in society as family members, colleagues, and patriots. Red’s ability to perform his comedic routines during his bleakest personal tragedies speak to his fortitude and altruism which inspire us to reach outside of ourselves to impact the lives of others in positive ways.
The Red Skelton Museum features a 3,500 square foot, fully interactive exhibit entitled “Red Skelton: A Legacy of Laughter” which highlights these themes:
- Red’s Comedy Kit: activities which introduce the ideas of physical comedy by showing his mastery of the art of pantomime, slapstick, pratfalls, exaggerated movement, and facial expression
- An interactive chronology featuring three parallel timelines: Red’s life, national events, and popular entertainment
- Scrapbooks of photos, letters and memorabilia as well as costumes of all of his most beloved characters: Freddie the Freeloader, Clem Kaddidlehopper, San Fernando Red, Sheriff Dead-Eye, Cauliflower McPugg, etc.
- A “Freddie the Freeloader” stage set on which visitors can practice physical sight gags
- A showcase theater including a short film featuring hysterical and poignant highlights from Red’s movie and television career, along with still images illustrating key moments and events in Red’s life.