The life and musical career of Irving Berlin
Actor Róbert Alföldi
Actress-singer Erika Náray
Actress Dorottya Udvaros
Musical director: Tamás Berdisz
The Russian-born American composer and lyricist Irving Berlin (1888 – 1989) contributed to American musical culture with music and songs that made him being counted among the greatest.
More than 1,500 songs, dozens of musicals and soundtracks are linked to his name, sung by famous artists like Fred Astaire, Al Jolson, Judy Garland, Bing Crosby, Ella Fitzgerald, Marilyn Monroe, and many others.
His name may not be as well-known to the Hungarian audience as the Gershwin brothers, although his hits like White Christmas, God Bless America, and Cheek to Cheek are well-known in the country.
The artist was born as Israel Isidore Balin in a Belarusian-Jewish family in Siberia; in 1893 he left for the United States with his parents to escape the Russian pogroms. He lost his father early on and became a provider for his family already as a child. It was at this time that he began writing songs, without knowing how to read sheet music. He just sat down at the piano and cranked out melodies that became world hits and made him a celebrated author of America.
Erika Náray, Dorottya Udvaros, and Róbert Alföldi will present the life and career of this great author and songwriter at the Jewish Art Days Festival. The artists are enthusiastic about their work together.
“We have been wanting a joint musical performance with Dorottya Udvaros for a very long time and we’re happy that it will be none other than the Jewish Art Days Festival to host this event. In any case, we wanted a male guest, and almost immediately we both thought of Róbert Alföldi who is connected to us in a number of ways. We have had him as a partner in theatre, director, theatre director to Dorka, but we never sang together. The speciality of the event is that now he will be Irving Berlin himself, telling the audience about his life through music as well.” (Erika Náray)
Jazz is very close to Berlin’s music, so it is obvious that a band coming from this genre should cooperate at the evening. This way, with the lead of Tamás Berdisz Berlin’s greatest hits will sound as authentic as possible.