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Luis Avalos

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Luisavalos

Luis Avalos, tending to Maurice the plant

Luis Avalos (1946-2014) was a Cuban American character actor and a regular on The Electric Company, from the second season (1972) until the end (1977), playing the zany Dr. Doolots, Pedro (owner of Maurice the puppet plant), Igor, and others. In the 1974 special Out to Lunch, Avalos reprised many of his roles and, in the Electric Company/Sesame Street crossover segments, played a casino owner in the "Kookamunga Kid" sketch (with Cookie Monster) and the stage manager near the end, who reminds Bert and Ernie that they have to say goodnight.

Avalos began his acting career on stage in New York, performing with the Repertory Theater of Lincoln Center between 1970 and 1972, in the Broadway shows Camino Real, Beggar on Horseback, The Good Woman of Setzuan, and Narrow Road to the Deep North. As a trainee actor, he mostly had minor roles, such as waiters or understudying. The stint ended when Avalos joined The Electric Company.

Apart from The Electric Company, Avalos was a regular on several series, all short-lived: Highcliffe Manor (1979, as mad scientist Dr. Sanchez), Condo (1983, as Jessie), I Had Three Wives (1985, as Lt. Gomez), and the odd Western Ned Blessing: The Story of My Life and Times (1993, as sidekick Crecencio), as well as recurring as Dr. Esquivel on the sitcom E/R and Principal Rivas for the first season of Hangin' with Mr. Cooper. He remained busy, however, with guest appearances on Barney Miller, NYPD Blue, ER, Benson, Fame, The Incredible Hulk, The Jeffersons, Hill Street Blues, Full House, and the later TV movie installments of Columbo, Perry Mason, and The Rockford Files. Film credits included Hot Stuff (with Dom DeLuise and Bill McCutcheon), Stir Crazy (with Gene Wilder and Richard Pryor), Ghost Fever (as detective Sherman Hemsley's partner), Fires Within, The Ringer, and Hollywood Homicide.

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