Comedy Legend Dead at 87, One Tweet From Heartbroken Son Tells Public All They Need To Know


At the Comedy Store on Sunset Strip, young comics such as Robin Williams and David Letterman were given a chance to perform in front of a live audience and test their stand-up acts.

Mitzi and Sammy Shore founded the comedy club in 1972 with fellow comedian Rudy DeLuca.

Mitzi took over the club in 1974 after her divorce and comics from across the country came to Los Angeles, California dreaming of getting some time on stage to showcase their comedy.

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“We’re like a school or a boxers’ gym,” she told the Los Angeles Times in 1994. “We’re here to help people develop their skills and to get them seen by supportive comedy crowds, as well as by TV and movie people.”

Because of this training that Shore claimed the Comedy Club provided, she famously did not pay her comics until they went on strike in 1979.

Letterman called Shore a “maternal influence” at the club. “She had this place where we could all come and be silly and make mistakes and have fun and go home with a waitress. I left a job for what I thought could be nothing and then found this life and friends and home and creative order. And without Mitzi, I don’t know what I would have done.”

The Comedy Store issued a statement and closed the club on Wednesday after news broke of Mitz’s passing. She was 87 years old.

“It is with great sadness and very heavy hearts that we report the passing of Mitzi Shore, the legendary Godmother of the world famous Comedy Store,” the statement said.

Mitzi passed away on Wednesday, April 11 after battling Parkinson’s disease.

“Mitzi was an extraordinary businesswoman and decades ahead of her time who cultivated and celebrated the artistry of stand-up comedy. She was also a loving mother, not only to her own four children, but to the myriad of comedians who adored her.  She leaves behind an indelible mark and legacy and has helped change the face of comedy. We will all miss her dearly.”

One of her sons, comedian Pauly Shore, tweeted that his “heart lays heavy” after his mother’s death.

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He also posted a tribute to his mother on Facebook.

“Looking back on my mom’s life, the one word that comes to mind is giver. She gave her heart, her soul, and her stages. So Mom, on behalf of myself and all of the other comedians, we want to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for letting us develop our craft at the Store.

“Not only were you our comedy Godmother, you are my mother. We’d be nothing without you and your guidance.”

“While you’re up in heaven, we will be down here on earth making sure the Main Room, the Belly Room, and the Original room stay sacred,” his post concluded.” You will always be in my heart.”

Our hearts are with her family during this difficult time.

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Erin Coates was an editor for The Western Journal for over two years before becoming a news writer. A University of Oregon graduate, Erin has conducted research in data journalism and contributed to various publications as a writer and editor.
Erin Coates was an editor for The Western Journal for over two years before becoming a news writer. She grew up in San Diego, California, proceeding to attend the University of Oregon and graduate with honors holding a degree in journalism. During her time in Oregon, Erin was an associate editor for Ethos Magazine and a freelance writer for Eugene Magazine. She has conducted research in data journalism, which has been published in the book “Data Journalism: Past, Present and Future.” Erin is an avid runner with a heart for encouraging young girls and has served as a coach for the organization Girls on the Run. As a writer and editor, Erin strives to promote social dialogue and tell the story of those around her.
Tucson, Arizona
Graduated with Honors
Bachelor of Arts in Journalism, University of Oregon
Books Written
Contributor for Data Journalism: Past, Present and Future
Prescott, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English, French
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Health, Entertainment, Faith