Desi Arnaz was a famous American musician, actor, and television producer. He was the founder of the successful Latin music band, Desi Arnaz Orchestra. This orchestra introduced America to conga, a Latin-American dance that received huge popularity. His single, Babalu is regarded as his signature song. Along with his wife Lucille Ball, he formed Desilu Productions which organized Arnaz and Lucille Ball’s programs on stage, screens, and radio. As an actor, he is remembered for his outstanding performance as Ricky Ricardo in American television series, I Love Lucy.
Desiderio Alberto Arnaz y de Acha, III
Birthday / Date of Birth
Desi Arnaz was born on the 2nd of March 1917, in Santiago de Cuba, Republic of Cuba.
On December 2, 1986, at the age of 69 he died.
He was Caucasian of only Spanish ancestry.
After reaching Florida, Desi took admission at St. Patrick Catholic High School. In an attempt to improve his English, he attended Saint Leo Prep, which is situated near Tampa.
- Father – Desiderio Alberto Arnaz Y De Alberni II
- Mother – Dolores De Acha
- Children – Desi Arnaz Jr., Lucie Arnaz
Girlfriend / Spouse
Desi Arnaz has dated –
- Lucille Ball (1940-1960) – Arnaz and Lucille Ball were married on November 30, 1940. Their marriage was always turbulent. Convinced that Arnaz was being unfaithful to her and also because he came home drunk several times, Ball filed for divorce in September 1944, but returned to him before the interlocutory decree became final. Arnaz and Ball subsequently had two children, actors Lucie Arnaz (born 1951) and Desi Arnaz Jr. (born 1953). In 1960, Ball divorced him.
- Edith Mack Hirsch (1963–1985) – On March 2, 1963, Arnaz married Edith Mack Hirsch.
- In feet – 5 feet 9 inches
- In centimeters – 178 cm
- In meters – 1.78 m
- In Kilograms – 68 kg
- In Pounds – 149 lbs
He wears a size 8 (UK) shoe.
Arnaz is famous for being the founder of the successful Latin music band, Desi Arnaz Orchestra. His single Babalu is regarded as his signature song through which he got fame. He had gained fame for producing several television series like The Ann Sothern Show and The Untouchables.
As an actor, he is remembered for his outstanding performance as Ricky Ricardo in American television series I Love Lucy. He also acted in several other films, such as Father Takes a Wife and The Navy Comes Through which made him renowned. His role of a dying soldier in Bataan brought him wide recognition.
Desi Arnaz Net worth
Desi Arnaz has an estimated net worth of $2.5 million dollars as of 2022.
Some Lesser Known Facts About Desi Arnaz
- When Xavier Cugat, a Spanish-American bandleader, discovered his musical potential, Desi received an offer to perform in Cugat’s orchestra.
- In December 1937, he formed his own band, the Desi Arnaz Orchestra, in Miami Beach. The band helped him gain popularity in the American music industry. He got an opportunity to audition for a Broadway musical titled Too Many Girls in 1939. The following year, he went to Hollywood to act in the film adaptation of the musical.
- In May 1943, he received his draft notice to serve in ‘World War II.’ As part of the army, he took the responsibility to direct ‘United Service Organization’ programs at a military hospital in San Fernando Valley.
- After his discharge from the army, he organized a new orchestra that achieved immense success with live appearances and recordings.
- In 1946, he performed his single Babalu which received critical acclaim.
- In 1948, along with Lucille Ball, he started Desilu Productions which organized their programs on stage, screen, and radio.
- In 1970, he co-hosted shows alongside daytime host and producer Mike Douglas. He also made a guest appearance with his son Desi Jr. on Saturday Night Live to promote his autobiography A Book.
- He acted in I Love Lucy, an American television situation comedy that was broadcast from October 15, 1951 to May 6, 1957 on CBS. Its story depicts the life of Lucy Ricardo and her bandleader husband Ricky Ricardo. The show won five ‘Emmy Awards.
- Arnaz and his wife moved to Del Mar, California, where he spent the rest of his life in semi-retirement. He owned a horse-breeding farm in Corona, California, and raced thoroughbreds.
- He also contributed to charitable and nonprofit organizations, including San Diego State University.
- Desi has two stars on Hollywood Walk of Fame for his contribution towards motion pictures and television works.
- Arnaz used to smoke four to five Cuban cigars a day. This habit of his made him suffer from lung cancer. His first wife Ball spent several hours with him before he went into a coma. On December 2, 1986, at the age of 69 he died.