Stage and Real Names


Archibald Leach

Nathan Birnbaum

Welcome to Stage and Real Names – Celebrity Birth Names


Alphonso D’Abruzzo

Betty Joan Perske

Doris von Kappelhoff

Roy Scherer Jr.

Merle Johnson, Jr.

Alexandra Zuck

Just not the same, is it? There’s a perfectly good reason why celebrities dump their real names. Sometimes a birth name lacks that showbiz pizazz needed for stardom.

Back in the Fifites and Sixties almost everyone got a new name – whether they needed it or not. Would we have loved The Duke any less if he remained Marion Morrison instead of being John Wayne?

Anyway, more lists. I tried to include some more modern folks, just so I didn’t look older than well, Nathan Birnbaum.

A
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar – Ferdinand Lewis Alcindor, Jr.
Edie Adams –  Elizabeth Edith Enke
Nick Adams – Nicholas Adamshock
Eddie Albert –  Edward Albert Heimberger
Alan Alda – Alphonso D’Abruzzo
Jane Alexander –  Jane Quigley
Muhammad Ali – Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr.
Fred Allen –  John Sullivan
Woody Allen – Allen Konigsberg
June Allyson – Ella Geisman
Don Ameche – Dominic Felix Amici
Julie Andrews – Julia Wells
Eve Arden –  Eunice Quedens
Beatrice Arthur – Bernice Frankel
Jean Arthur –  Gladys Greene
Fred Astaire – Frederick Austerlitz
Frankie Avalon – Francis Thomas Avalonne
B
Lauren Bacall – Betty Joan Perske
Kaye Ballard – Catherine Balotta
Anne Bancroft – Anne Italiano
Brigitte Bardot – Camille Javal
Rona Barrett – Rona Burstein
Gene Barry –  Eugene Klass
John Barrymore – John Blythe
Orson Bean – Dallas Burrows
Tony Bennett – Anthony Dominick Benedetto
Jack Benny – Benjamin Kubelsky
Milton Berle – Milton Berlinger
Irving Berlin – Israel Baline
Joey Bishop –  Joseph Gottlieb
Amanda Blake – Beverly Louise Neill
Robert Blake – Michael Gubitosi
Victor Borge – Borge Rosenbaum
Big Bopper – Jiles Perry Richardson
Ernest Borgnine – Ermes Effron Borgnino
David Bowie – David Robert Jones
Fanny Brice –  Fanny Borach
Charles Bronson – Charles Buchinski
Mel Brooks – Mel Kaminsky
Dr. Joyce Brothers – Joyce Diane Bauer
Yul Brynner – Taidje Kahn, Jr.
George Burns –  Nathan Birnbaum
Ellen Burstyn – Edna Gilhooley
Richard Burton – Richard Jenkins
Red Buttons – Aaron Chwatt
C
Michael Caine – Maurice Micklewhite
Rory Calhoun – Francis Timony Durgin
Truman Capote – Truman Streckfus Persons
Diahann Carroll –  Carol Diahann Johnson
Cyd Charisse – Tula Ellice Finklea
Chubby Checker – Ernest Evans
Cher – Cherilyn Sarkisian
Patsy Cline – Virginia Patterson Hensley
Lee J. Cobb – Leo Jacoby
Claudette Colbert –  Lily Chauchoin
Mike Connors – Krekor “Kirk” Ohanian
Robert Conrad – Conrad Robert Falk
Alice Cooper – Vincent Damon Furnier
David Copperfield – David Kotkin
Howard Cosell – Howard Cohen
Elvis Costello – Declan McManus
Lou Costello – Louis Francis Cristillo
Joan Crawford – Lucille Le Sueur
Michael Crawford – Michael Dumble-Smith
Bing Crosby – Harry Lillis Crosby
Tom Cruise – Thomas Mapother IV
Tony Curtis – Bernard Schwartz
D
Vic Damone – Vito Farinola
Rodney Dangerfield – Jacob Cohen
Bobby Darin – Walden Robert Cassotto
Doris Day –  Doris von Kappelhoff
Jimmy Dean – Seth Ward
Yvonne De Carlo – Peggy Middleton
Sandra Dee – Alexandra Zuck
John Denver –  Henry John Deutschendorf Jr.
John Derek –  Derek Harris
Danny DeVito – Daniel Michaeli
Angie Dickinson – Angeline Brown
Bo Diddley – Elias Bates
Troy Donahue – Merle Johnson, Jr.
Diana Dors –  Diana Fluck
Kirk Douglas – Issur Danielovitch
Mike Douglas – Michael Delaney Dowd, Jr.
Bob Dylan – Robert Zimmerman
E
Barbara Eden – Barbara Huffman
Vince Edwards – Vicent Edward Zoino
Ron Ely – Ronald Pierce
Dale Evans – Frances Octavia Smith
Chad Everett –  Raymond Cramton
F
Fabian – Fabiano Forte
Douglas Fairbanks –  Douglas Ullman
Stepin Fetchit – Lincoln Perry
Sally Field – Sally Mahoney
W.C. Fields – William Claude Dukenfield
Peter Finch – William Mitchell
Rhonda Fleming – Marilyn Louis
Gerald R. Ford – Leslie Lynch King, Jr.
Joan Fontaine –  Joan de Havilland
Glenn Ford – Gwyllyn Samuel Newton Ford
John Ford –  Sean O’Fearna
John Forsythe –  John Freund
Jodie Foster – Alicia Christian Foster
Tony Franciosa – Anthony Papaleo
Connie Francis –  Concetta Franconero
G
Greta Garbo – Greta Gustafsson
John Garfield –  Julius Garfinkle
Judy Garland – Frances Gumm
James Garner – James Scott Bumgarner
Crystal Gayle – Brenda Gayle Webb
Whoopie Goldberg – Caryn Johnson
Eydie Gorme –  Edith Gormezano
Cary Grant – Archibald Leach
Peter Graves – Peter Aurness
Rocky Graziano – Rocco Barbella
Joel Grey –  Joe Katz
H
Buddy Hackett – Leonard Hacker
Jean Harlow –  Harlean Carpentier
Rex Harrison – Reginald Carey
Helen Hayes –  Helen Brown
Rita Hayworth – Margarita Cansino
Charlton Heston – Charles Carter
Steven Hill – Solomon Krakovsky
Hulk Hogan – Terry Jean Bollette
William Holden – William Franklin Beedle, Jr.
Billy Holiday – Eleanora Fagan
Judy Holliday –  Judith Tuvim
Buddy Holly – Charles Hardin Holley
Bob Hope – Leslie Townes Hope
Robert Horton – Meade Howard Horton, Jr.
Leslie Howard – Leslie Stainer
Harry Houdini – Ehrich Weiss
Rock Hudson – Roy Scherer Jr.
Engelbert Humperdinck –  Arnold Dorsey
Tab Hunter – Arthur Andrew Gelien
I
Burl Ives – Burle Icle Ivanhoe
J
David Janssen –  David Meyer
Elton John –  Reginald Dwight
Don Johnson –  Donald Wayne
Al Jolson – Asa Yoelson
Jennifer Jones –  Phyllis Isley
Louis Jourdan – Louis Gendre
K
Danny Kaye – David Kaminsky
Boris Karloff – William Henry Pratt
Diane Keaton – Diane Hall
Howard Keel –  Harold Leek
Carole King –  Carole Klein
Larry King – Larry Zeigler
Ted Knight – Tadeus Wladyslaw Konopka
Ben Kingsley – Krishna Banji
L
Cheryl Ladd – Cheryl Stoppelmoor
Frankie Laine – Frankie LoVecchio
Veronica Lake – Constance Ockleman
Dorothy Lamour –  Mary Kaumeyer
Ann Landers – Esther “Eppie” Pauline Friedman Lederer
Mario Lanza – Alfredo Cocozza
Michael Landon – Eugene Orowitz
Stan Laurel – Arthur Jefferson
Steve Lawrence – Sidney Leibowitz
Gypsy Rose Lee –  Rose Louise Hovick
Janet Leigh –  Jeanette Morrison
Jerry Lewis –  Joseph Levitch
Huey Lewis – Hugh Cregg
Hal Linden –  Harold Lipshitz
Little Richard – Richard Penniman
Carole Lombard –  Jane Peters
Jack Lord – John Joseph Ryan
Sophia Loren – Sophia Scicoloni
Peter Lorre – Laszio Lowenstein
Bela Lugosi – Bela Ferenc Blasko
M
Moms Mabley – Loretta Mary Aitken
Shirley MacLaine – Shirley Beaty
Elle MacPherson – Eleanor Gow
Madonna – Madonna Louise Ciccone
Lee Majors – Harvey Lee Yeary II
Karl Malden – Mladen Sekulovich
Barry Manilow – Barry Alan Pincus
Jayne Mansfield – Vera Jane Palmer
Fredric March –  Frederick Bickel
Rocky Marciano – Rocco Francis Marchegiano
Dean Martin – Dino Crocetti
Chico Marx – Leonard Marx
Groucho Marx – Julius Marx
Gummo Marx – Milton Marx
Harpo Marx – Adolph Marx
Zeppo Marx – Herbert Marx
Walter Matthau – Walter Matuschanskayasky
Audrey Meadows – Audrey Cotter
Jayne Meadows – Jayne Cotter
Ethel Merman – Ethel Zimmerman
George Michael – Georgios Panayiotou
Ray Milland – Reginald Truscott-Jones
Ann Miller – Lucille Collier
Guy Mitchell – Albert George Cernick
Joni Mitchell –  Roberta Joan Anderson
Marilyn Monroe – Norma Jean Baker
Yves Montand – Ivo Levi
Demi Moore – Demetria Guynes
Garry Moore –  Thomas Garrison Morfit
Rita Moreno – Rosita Alverio
Harry Morgan – Harry Bratsburg
N
Peter Nero – Bernie Nierow
Chuck Norris – Carlos Ray Norris
O
Hugh O’Brian –  Hugh Krampke
Maureen O’Hara – Maureen Fitzsimons
P
Patti Page – Clara Ann Fowler
Jack Palance –  Walter Palanuik
Bert Parks – Bert Jacobson
Johnny Paycheck – Don Lytle
Minnie Pearl – Sarah Ophella Colley Cannon
Bernadette Peters – Bernadette Lazzaro
Lou Diamond Phillips – Lou Upchurch
Edith Piaf –  Edith Gassion
Slim Pickens – Louis Lindley
Mary Pickford – Gladys Smith
Stephanie Powers – Stefania Federkiewicz
R
Tony Randall – Leonard Rosenberg
Ahmad Rashad – Bobby Moore
Johnnie Ray – John Alvin
Martha Raye – Margaret Theresa Yvonne Reed
Donna Reed – Donna Belle Mullenger
Della Reese – Delloreese Patricia Early
Debbie Reynolds – Mary Frances Reynolds
Joan Rivers –  Joan Sandra Molinsky
Johnny Rivers – John Henry Ramistella
Harold Robbins – Frances Kane
Edward G. Robinson – Emmanuel Goldenberg
Ginger Rogers –  Virginia McMath
Roy Rogers – Leonard Slye
Mickey Rooney – Joe Yule Jr.
Meg Ryan – Margaret Mary Emily Anne Hyra
Bobby Rydell – Robert Ridarelli
S
Jane Seymour – Joyce Frankenberg
Del Shannon – Charles Westover
Omar Sharif – Michael Shalhouz
Charlie Sheen – Carlos Irwin Estevez
Gene Simmons – Chaim Witz
Buffalo Bob Smith – Robert Emil Schmidt
Ann Sothern – Harriet Lake
Robert Stack – Robert Modini
Jean Stapleton –  Jeanne Murray
Barbara Stanwyck – Ruby Stevens
Ringo Starr – Richard Starkey
Connie Stevens – Concetta Ingolia
Sting – Gordon Sumner
Gale Storm – Josephine Cottle
Donna Summer – La Donna Gaines
T
Robert Taylor – Spangler Arlington Brugh
Danny Thomas – Muzyad Yakhoob
Tina Turner – Annie Mae Bullock
Twiggy – Leslie Hornby
Conway Twitty –  Harold Lloyd Jenkins
V
Ritchie Valens – Richard Valenzuela
Rudolph Valentino – Rudolpho D’Antonguolla
Frankie Valli – Frank Castelluccio
Abigail Van Buren – Pauline Ester Friedman
Bobby Vee – Robert Thomas Velline
W
Andy Warhol – Andrew Warhola
Muddy Waters – McKinley Morganfield
David Wayne –  Wayne McMeekan
John Wayne – Marion Michael Morrison
Clifton Webb –  Webb Parmalee Hollenbeck
Raquel Welch – Raquel Tejada
Tuesday Weld – Susan Kerr Wells
Nathaniel West – Nathaniel Wallenstein Weinstein
Gene Wilder – Jerome Silberman
Shelley Winters – Shirley Schrift
Wolfman Jack – Robert Smith
Stevie Wonder – Steveland Morris Hardaway
Natalie Wood – Natasha Gurdin
Jane Wyman –  Sarah Jane Fulks
Tammy Wynette – Wynette Pugh
Y
Gig Young –  Byron Barr
Michael Rich :