Acting Legend Dick Van Dyke Learns To Play Ukulele At 97:‘It’s Never Too Late To Start Something New’

By Khadija Pervez in Showbiz On 29th November 2023

Dick Van Dyke, a famous TV guy, has done a lot in his career—hosting shows, acting in movies and being on Broadway. Now, at 97, he's trying something new: learning to play the ukulele.

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There's a cute video on his Instagram showing him figuring out the ukulele. He's really focused on finding this thing called the "F" chord. You can hear him asking his teacher, Melanie Kareem, for help. She's from a beginner's class called Get Started Playing Ukulele.

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Basically, this video shows that at 97, Van Dyke decided to learn the ukulele. He's in a beginner's class, and the video is just him trying hard to get the hang of it. It's cool because it shows he still loves learning and trying new things, even at his age.

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In the video, it looks like Dick Van Dyke is attempting to play a little melody, and interestingly, it sounds a bit like the start of "Be Our Guest" from Disney's "Beauty and the Beast."

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Instagram/Dick Van Dyke

Others with him are also having a bit of a tough time with the chords, and it's nice to see them all sharing the experience with the legendary performer.

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Van Dyke captioned his post: "My first ukulele lesson with @getstartedplayingukulele. @bijoubox's third." User @bijoubox is his wife, makeup artist and producer Arlene Silver.

He ends the caption by writing: "It's never too late to start something new." The post garnered over 56,000 views and hundreds of comments, most of which lauded the legend on his inspirational tenacity.

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"There is a special place for this amazing soul, incomparable grace, kindness and talent," wrote the account for Cahuilla Creek Motocross. 

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"As long as you don’t break it over your head and get amnesia… Antonio Stradivarius," added @thevigilfamily, who put a laughing emoji. 

Antonio Stradivari was an esteemed Italian crafter of string instruments who lived in the late 1600s and early 1700s. "We adore you!" they concluded.

One user, Juli Sweeton Richey, wrote a heartfelt message to the actor: "At almost 53, I feel like I’m too old to take piano lessons. Seeing you try this, encourages me. You continue to bring joy into my life. Thank you."

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Many people commenting on the post referred to Dick Van Dyke as a legend and a source of inspiration, echoing Richey's sentiments or sharing their own stories of trying new things later in life.

The Instagram post also highlights Van Dyke's enduring determination over the years. Earlier in the year, he surprised audiences as the Gnome on the US version of "The Masked Singer," showcasing his lively and energetic performances.

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About a month later, Dick Van Dyke experienced a car accident in Malibu, leaving him a bit bloody and with a concussion.

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However, he quickly recovered and surprised everyone by announcing a month later that he would be taking on a new role in a soap opera.

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In 2018, he starred in "Mary Poppins Returns," and over the past decade, he faced a couple more car accidents and other scares, but each time, he managed to bounce back.

The "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" star reportedly hits the gym three days a week, often with his companion Silver.

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During an interview with Yahoo! in February, Van Dyke credited his sprightliness to good genes and his "beautiful young wife," who is half his age and takes care of him. 

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Dick Van Dyke tied the knot with Silver in 2012 when he was approximately 81 years old, while she was around 36.

His illustrious career includes iconic roles such as starring in "The Dick Van Dyke Show" from 1961 to 1966, featuring in "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" in 1968, and appearing in both the original "Mary Poppins" in 1964 and its sequel "Mary Poppins Returns" in 2018.

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Throughout his career, Van Dyke has received numerous accolades, including Emmys, a Grammy, and a Tony. However, he has yet to secure an Oscar, which is necessary to achieve EGOT status (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, Tony).

Despite this, his contributions to the entertainment industry remain widely celebrated and appreciated.