Born in New York City, Dr. Harold 'Stumpy' Cromer began his career as a tap dancer on roller skates at the Hudson Guild in the Chelsea district of Hell's Kitchen. His twin sister (Hattie) expressed little or no desire to join Dr. Harold in his theatrical endeavors.
His family moved to Harlem in the early 1960's where he continued his education in reading, writing, arithmetic and rhythm tap. He performed at night in Julie Podell's Kit Kat Club on East 55th Street, and attended Cooper Junior High School by day.
Dr. Cromer tossed away his roller skates when Cole Porter and B. G. De Sylva signed him to appear on Broadway in 'Du Barry Was A Lady', with Bert Lahr, Ethel Merman and Betty Grable. Miss Merman sang 'Do I Love You', and Dr. Harold danced. Following the long run, Miss Merman was to star in 'Panama Hattie' and was later replaced by Gypsy Rose Lee as Madame 'Du Barry'. Once again, Gypsy sang and Dr. Harold danced.
Following a long road tour, Dr. Harold returned to Broadway in Richard Kollmar's production of 'Early To Bed', with music by Fats Waller, book and lyrics by George Marion Jr., starring Carl Brisson and Muriel Angelus at the Broadhurst Theater in 1943.
Dr. Harold is certainly no stranger to Vaudeville, night clubs, movies and television, as a member of the well known song and dance comedy team of 'Stump and Stumpy' with James Cross. They appeared in the leading theaters and night clubs throughout the United States in New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles, as well as in Canada and Europe. To mention a few: The Cotton Club, Copacabana, The Riviera - with Duke Ellington, The Desert Inn - with Ted Lewis in Las Vegas and Hollywood, The Paramount - with Frank Sinatra, The Strand Theater - with Billie Holiday and Count Basie, toured with Nat King Cole, Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughn, The Ink Spots, Stan Kenton, Sophie Tucker and many other well known celebrities.
Dr. Harold kept apace with the changing times when he became the Master of Ceremonies to Rock & Roll's 'The Biggest Show of Stars' in the late 1950's, introducing Bill Haley, Buddy Holly, Paul Anka, Bobby Darin, Fats Domino, Chubby Checker, Frankie Avalon, Chuck Berry and Cliff Richards (England's challenge to Elvis Presley), Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder and Marvin Gaye.
Dr. Cromer returned to Broadway in 1978 in Lee Theodore's 'The American Dance Machine' as a guest soloist and on tour to many cities in the U.S.A. and Japan. More recently, he concluded a successful engagement in London, England at the Adelphi Theater in 1982.
Dr. Harold received his Living Treasure in American Dance Award in 1996. It was presented to him on behalf of the School of American Dance & Arts Management
by Oklahoma City University graduate, and now Tony Award winner, Kristin Chenoweth.
For the past fifty years, Dr. Harold 'Stumpy' Cromer has performed as a song-and-dance man and impressionist in the United States, Canada, England, France, Germany, Holland, Austria, Italy, Japan, Cuba and Mexico, and on special occasions as a roller skating tap dancer.