Musician and Entertainer
Born May 16, 1919

Wladziu Valentino Liberace, best known simply as Liberace, was a famous American pianist and vocalist. In a career that spanned four decades of concerts, recordings, motion pictures, television and endorsements, Liberace became world-renowned. During the 1950s–1970s he was the highest-paid entertainer in the world and embraced a lifestyle of flamboyant excess both on and off the stage.… Read More

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Learn about the memorable moments in the evolution of Liberace.


1919 Birth Born on May 16, 1919.


1934 15 Years Old In 1934, he played jazz piano with a school group called "The Mixers" and later with other groups. … Read More
1937 18 Years Old A participant in a formal classical music competition in 1937, Liberace was praised for his "flair and showmanship".


1939 - 1943 3 More Events
1944 25 Years Old In 1944, he made his first appearances in Las Vegas, which later became his principal venue.
1945 26 Years Old He was playing at the best clubs, finally appearing at the Persian Room in 1945, with Variety proclaiming, "Liberace looks like a cross between Cary Grant and Robert Alda. … Read More
1947 28 Years Old 1 More Event
By 1947, he was billing himself as "Liberace—the most amazing piano virtuoso of the present day".


1950 31 Years Old In 1950, he performed for music-loving President Harry S. Truman in the East Room of the White House.
1954 35 Years Old 1 More Event
His New York City performance at Madison Square Garden in 1954, which earned him a record $138,000 for one performance, was more successful than the great triumph his idol Paderewski had made 20 years earlier.
1955 36 Years Old By 1955, he was making $50,000 per week at the Riviera Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas and had over 200 official fan clubs with a quarter of a million members. … Read More
1956 37 Years Old 1 More Event
Liberace appeared on the 8 March 1956 episode of the TV quiz program You Bet Your Life hosted by Groucho Marx. … Read More
1957 38 Years Old On July 19, 1957, hours after Liberace gave a deposition in his $25 million libel suit against Confidential magazine, two masked intruders attacked his mother in the garage of Liberace's home in Sherman Oaks. … Read More
1958 39 Years Old …  A new Liberace Show premiered on ABC's daytime schedule in 1958, featuring a less flamboyant, less glamorous persona, but it failed in six months, as his popularity began slumping.


1960 41 Years Old Liberace received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1960 for his contributions to the television industry. … Read More
1966 47 Years Old In the Batman television series in 1966 with Adam West and Burt Ward, Liberace played a dual role as concert pianist Chandell and his gangster-like twin Harry, who was extorting Chandell into a life of crime as "Fingers", in the episodes "The Devil's Fingers" and "The Dead Ringers", both written by Lorenzo Semple Jr., who had developed Batman for television. … Read More


1978 59 Years Old Television specials were made from Liberace's show at the Las Vegas Hilton in 1978-79 which were broadcast on CBS. … Read More


1982 63 Years Old In 1982, Scott Thorson, Liberace's 22-year-old former chauffeur and live-in lover of five years, sued the pianist for $113 million in palimony after he was let go by Liberace.
1984 65 Years Old Liberace continued to deny that he was homosexual, and during court depositions in 1984, he insisted that Thorson was never his lover. … Read More
1986 67 Years Old 1 More Event
In late 1986, during one of his last interviews, Liberace indirectly acknowledged his illness with AIDS by remarking to the press: "How can you enjoy life if you don't have your health?" … Read More
Liberace was recognized during his career with two Emmy Awards, six gold albums, and two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Liberace released a book on his life, and performed 56 sold-out shows at Radio City Music Hall which set box-office records a few months before his death in Palm Springs, California, on February 4, 1987. … Read More
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