Cannon & Ball show poster
Summer season Great Yarmouth 1981

Over the years Larry moved away from the clown costume into the character he was best known for. No longer wearing the full make up and clown suit, a smarter more sophisticated, but equally bungling character developed. Combining Magic and his ability for visual humour the new act would see Larry travel the world as an international speciality act, while still maintaining his popularity on British stage and television.

By the 1970’s Larry was a regular on British Saturday night television performing his unique brand of comedy magic in the various variety shows of the day. He also appeared several times on televisions Old Music Time Hall show “The Good Old Days”, episodes of which are still repeated today!

In 1975 Larry performed at the Royal Variety Show at the London Palladium, which in those days was a huge accolade for a variety act. 

Larry continued to do summer shows in England and by the mid 70’s was appearing in what were considered to be the No1 dates; no more Babbacombe, it was now Blackpool! With headline acts such as Larry Grayson and Cannon and Ball. In 1981 in Yarmouth he worked with the young 18-year-old comedian/impressionist Lenny Henry, I wonder what ever happened to him, he seemed to have so much potential!

QE2 Daily programme
QE 2 entertainment programme May 1987

As summer seasons became smaller with shorter runs Larry turned to cruising. He had previously worked on cruise ships but always felt that to do five different acts over a two-week cruise was not for him. However, after much hard work he felt that he was now up for the challenge and embarked on another very successful stage of his career working regularly for P&O and Cunard.  By the end of it he still swore that he didn’t have five different acts, but one act in five pieces! 

The history of summer seasons, and the acts who appeared in them, was always of great interest to Larry and in the 1997 he had the opportunity to capture this in a book written as part of the centenary celebrations, of what was then known as the Concert Artist’s Association (CAA), a theatrical club situated in Covent Garden.

But – What do you do in the Winter, book by Larry parker
The cover of the book celebrating the centenary of the CAA

Larry is a past President of the Association, and his wife Rowena also served as Chairman. The history of the club and the charities it supported were close to both their hearts throughout their careers and beyond.

Larry remains an Honorary Member of the CAA, which is now known as the Club for Acts and Actors.