A variety show, also known as variety arts or variety entertainment, is entertainment made up of a variety of acts (hence the name), especially musical performances and sketch comedy, and is normally introduced by a compère (master of ceremonies) or host. Other types of acts include magic, animal and circus acts, acrobatics, juggling and ventriloquism. The variety format made its way from Victorian era stage to radio to television. Variety shows were a staple of English language television from its early days (late 1940’s) into the 1980s.
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