What Is the Jerry Lewis Telethon?


Quick Answer

The Jerry Lewis telethon was a star-studded annual extravaganza that used the power of celebrity to raise funds for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. With Jerry Lewis as host, the show aired on Labor Day each year from 1966 to 2014.

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Full Answer

Many of Hollywood's brightest stars and music's biggest talents made viewership-raising appearances on the show. Johnny Carson, Paul Newman and Robert DeNiro were among the many celebrities to appear, and John Lennon, Dolly Parton, KISS and Stevie Wonder were among the musical acts.

The telethon raised close to $2 billion in the 55 years that Jerry Lewis acted as the MDA's National Chairman.

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