Entertainment

The Greatest Entertainers of All Time  

Celebrity Lists
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90.2k votes 6.4k voters 43.9k views 347 items

List Rules Only individual people. No bands or group acts. Vote up the entertainers who put on the most riveting live shows.

When it comes to the greatest entertainers of all time, we're truly blessed to live in an age where technology allows us access to so many of these greats. Here you'll find a list of famous live entertainers who put on some of the best shows in recent history. Among them you'll find perhaps the most entertaining people on the planet, from singers to comedians.

Of course, many of the greatest entertainers to date were singers or musicians, or even dancing singers, such as Madonna, Michael Jackson, and Prince. However, you also have to consider top comedians and TV personalities, such as Jerry Seinfeld and Johnny Carson, respectively. 

Join the conversation about which were the best entertainers ever by voting for your favorites. Whether you were lucky enough to actually see one of their shows in person or have just enjoyed their talents through recordings, which ones do you think rank among the greatest entertainers ever to set foot on a stage?

list ordered by
1
Michael Jackson is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
Dec. at 51 (1958-2009)
Michael Joseph Jackson (August 29, 1958 – June 25, 2009) was an American singer, songwriter, and dancer. Dubbed the "King of Pop", he is regarded as one of the most significant ...more

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#6 of 2,186 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timefeaturing The Best Michael Jackson Songs of All Timelisted on Guest Stars on Sesame Street

2
Freddie Mercury is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
Dec. at 45 (1946-1991)
Freddie Mercury (born Farrokh Bulsara; 5 September 1946 – 24 November 1991) was a British singer, songwriter, record producer, and lead vocalist of the rock band Queen. Regarded as one of the ...more

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#866 of 2,186 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timefeaturing Everything We Know About Freddie Mercury’s Last Relationshiplisted on Famous Gay Men: List of Gay Men Throughout History

3
Elvis Presley is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
Dec. at 42 (1935-1977)
Elvis Aaron Presley (January 8, 1935 – August 16, 1977), also known mononymously as Elvis, was an American singer and actor. Regarded as one of the most significant cultural icons of the 20th ...more

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#8 of 2,186 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timefeaturing The Best Elvis Presley Songs of All Timelisted on Musicians You May Not Know Are Republican

4
Frank Sinatra is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
Dec. at 83 (1915-1998)
Francis Albert Sinatra (; December 12, 1915 – May 14, 1998) was an American singer, actor and producer who was one of the most popular and influential musical artists of the 20th century. He is ...more

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#34 of 2,186 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timefeaturing Smooth Facts You Didn't Know About Frank Sinatralisted on Actors You May Not Have Realized Are Republican

5
Prince is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
Dec. at 57 (1958-2016)
Prince Rogers Nelson (June 7, 1958 – April 21, 2016) was an American singer, songwriter, musician, record producer, dancer, actor, and filmmaker. With a career spanning four decades, Prince was ...more

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#17 of 2,186 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timefeaturing The Best Prince Songs of All Timelisted on Guest Stars on Sesame Street

6
Elton John is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
age 71
Sir Elton Hercules John (born Reginald Kenneth Dwight; 25 March 1947) is an English singer, songwriter, pianist, and composer. He has worked with lyricist Bernie Taupin since 1967; they have ...more

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7
Robin Williams is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
Dec. at 63 (1951-2014)
Robin McLaurin Williams (July 21, 1951 – August 11, 2014) was an American actor and comedian. Born in Chicago, Williams began performing stand-up comedy in San Francisco and Los Angeles during ...more

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#110 of 276 The Most Trustworthy Celebrities in the Worldfeaturing Heartwarming Behind-The-Scenes Stories About Robin Williamslisted on Guest Stars on Sesame Street

8
Lucille Ball is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
Dec. at 78 (1911-1989)
Lucille Désirée Ball (August 6, 1911 – April 26, 1989) was an American actress, comedian, model, entertainment studio executive and producer. She was the star of the self-produced ...more

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#15 of 362 The Funniest People of All Timefeaturing The Surprisingly Dark Behind-the-Scenes Secrets of 'I Love Lucy'listed on People On Stamps: List Of People On US Postage

9
Madonna is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
age 60
Madonna Louise Ciccone (, Italian: [tʃikˈkoːne]; born August 16, 1958) is an American singer, songwriter, actress, and businesswoman. Referred to as the "Queen of Pop" since the 1980s, ...more

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#252 of 276 The Most Trustworthy Celebrities in the Worldfeaturing The Best Madonna Albums of All Timelisted on Famous Friends of Robert Downey Jr.

10
Whitney Houston is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
Dec. at 49 (1963-2012)
Whitney Elizabeth Houston (August 9, 1963 – February 11, 2012) was an American singer and actress. She was cited as the most awarded female artist of all time by Guinness World Records and ...more

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#95 of 2,186 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timefeaturing The Best Whitney Houston Albums of All Timelisted on Famous Friends of Mariah Carey

11
Fred Astaire is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
Dec. at 88 (1899-1987)
Fred Astaire (born Frederick Austerlitz; May 10, 1899 – June 22, 1987) was an American dancer, singer, actor, choreographer, and television presenter. He is widely considered the most ...more

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#122 of 1,151 The Best Actors in Film History #325 of 1,066 The Best Singers of All Timefeaturing The Best Fred Astaire Movies

12
Johnny Carson is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
Dec. at 80 (1925-2005)
John William Carson (October 23, 1925 – January 23, 2005) was an American television host, comedian, writer, and producer. He is best known as the host of The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson ...more

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#39 of 362 The Funniest People of All Time #34 of 408 The Funniest Stand Up Comedians Of All Timelisted on Famous Friends of David Letterman

13
Aretha Franklin is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
age 76
Aretha Louise Franklin (March 25, 1942 – August 16, 2018) was an American singer, songwriter, pianist, and civil rights activist. Franklin began her career as a child singing gospel at New ...more

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#15 of 2,186 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timefeaturing The Best Aretha Franklin Albums of All Timelisted on Grammy Award for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals Winners List

14
Sammy Davis, Jr. is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
Dec. at 65 (1925-1990)
Samuel George Davis Jr. (December 8, 1925 – May 16, 1990) was an American singer, musician, dancer, actor, vaudevillian, comedian and activist known for his impressions of actors, musicians and ...more

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#1,368 of 2,186 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timefeaturing How Did Sammy Davis Jr. End Up $15 Million In Debt?listed on Famous Christians Who Converted to Judaism

15
Ella Fitzgerald is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
Dec. at 79 (1917-1996)
Ella Jane Fitzgerald (April 25, 1917 – June 15, 1996) was an African-American jazz singer sometimes referred to as the First Lady of Song, Queen of Jazz, and Lady Ella. She was noted for her ...more

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#60 of 2,186 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timefeaturing The Best Ella Fitzgerald Albums of All Timelisted on People On Stamps: List Of People On US Postage

16
Bob Hope is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
Susan Bertolini added Dec. at 100 (1903-2003)
Leslie Townes Hope, KBE, KC*SG, KSS (May 29, 1903 – July 27, 2003), known professionally as Bob Hope, was an American stand-up comedian, vaudevillian, actor, singer, dancer, athlete, and author. ...more

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#163 of 337 The Coolest Actors Ever #62 of 362 The Funniest People of All Timelisted on Actors You May Not Have Realized Are Republican

17
Johnny Cash is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
Dec. at 71 (1932-2003)
John R. "Johnny" Cash (born J. R. Cash; February 26, 1932 – September 12, 2003) was an American singer-songwriter, guitarist, actor, and author. He is one of the best-selling music ...more

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#30 of 2,186 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timefeaturing The Best Johnny Cash Songs of All Timelisted on Guest Stars on Sesame Street

18
Walt Disney is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
DaveHarding added Dec. at 65 (1901-1966)
Walter Elias Disney (; December 5, 1901 – December 15, 1966) was an American entrepreneur, animator, voice actor and film producer. A pioneer of the American animation industry, he introduced ...more

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#20 of 931 People We Wish Were Still Alivelisted on Republicans in Hollywood: Republican Celebrities List People On Stamps: List Of People On US Postage

19
Steven Spielberg is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
Susan Bertolini added age 72
Steven Allan Spielberg (; born December 18, 1946) is an American filmmaker. He is considered one of the founding pioneers of the New Hollywood era and one of the most popular directors and ...more

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20
Chuck Berry is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
age 92
Charles Edward Anderson Berry (October 18, 1926 – March 18, 2017) was an American singer and songwriter, and one of the pioneers of rock and roll music. With songs such as "Maybellene" ...more

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#69 of 2,186 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #89 of 711 The Best Rock Vocalistsfeaturing The Best Chuck Berry Albums of All Time

21
Tina Turner is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
age 79
Tina Turner (born Anna Mae Bullock, November 26, 1939) is an internationally recognized singer, songwriter, and actress. She is originally from the United States, and has been a Swiss citizen ...more

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#100 of 2,186 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timefeaturing The Best Tina Turner Albums of All Timelisted on Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance Winners List

22
Peter Sellers is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
DaveHarding added Died at 55 (1925-1980)
Peter Sellers, CBE (born Richard Henry Sellers; 8 September 1925 – 24 July 1980) was an English film actor, comedian and singer. He performed in the BBC Radio comedy series The Goon Show, ...more

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#65 of 1,151 The Best Actors in Film History #283 of 337 The Coolest Actors Everfeaturing The Best Peter Sellers Movies

23
John Wayne is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
DaveHarding added Dec. at 72 (1907-1979)
Marion Mitchell Morrison (born Marion Robert Morrison; May 26, 1907 – June 11, 1979), known professionally as John Wayne and nicknamed Duke, was an American actor, filmmaker, and Presidential ...more

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24
Louis Armstrong is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
Dec. at 70 (1901-1971)
Louis Daniel Armstrong (August 4, 1901 – July 6, 1971), nicknamed Satchmo, Satch, and Pops, was an American trumpeter, composer, vocalist and occasional actor who was one of the most influential ...more

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#66 of 2,186 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timefeaturing The Best Louis Armstrong Albums of All Timelisted on People On Stamps: List Of People On US Postage

25
Sean Connery is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Entertainers of All Time
DaveHarding added age 88
Sir Thomas Sean Connery (born 25 August 1930) is a retired Scottish actor and producer, who has won an Academy Award, two BAFTA Awards, one being a BAFTA Academy Fellowship Award, and three ...more

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