Being Cooper’s ourselves we (ok I ) will tell people I am related to no other than Tommy Cooper. I suppose we could be if you traced the Cooper name back but who has time for that!
You may remember Tommy Cooper for his red fez, which he habitually wore when performing.
Born here in the UK Tommy initially served in the British Army for 7 years which gave him his popular monologue about ‘Cooper the Trooper’. After leaving the army he eventually developed his conjuring skills and became a member of the Magic Circle.
Although he spent time on tour performing his magic act, which specialised in magic tricks that appeared to “fail”, although to keep the audience on their toes Tommy threw in an occasional trick that worked when it was least expected!
He rose to international prominence when his career moved into television, with programmes for Thames Television and London Weekend Television.
Tommy was popular with audiences for nearly 40 years, and he sadly passed away doing what he loved most. In 1984 Tommy was performing on the Royal Variety Show. Whilst in the middle of his act he slumped down, his loyal assistant laughing from the wings as she believed it was part of the act. Likewise the audience laughed as he fell backwards.
The director of the production cued the orchestra to play music for an unscripted commercial break, whilst another acts manager tried to pull Tommy back through the curtains. While the show continued, efforts were being made backstage to revive Tommy. It was not until a second commercial break that paramedics moved his body to Westminster Hospital, where he was pronounced dead on arrival.