Friday, July 29, 2011

Celebrating Sigmund Romberg's Birthday with Nelson Eddy

Nelson Eddy

Nelson Eddy sings "Stouthearted Men":

Sigmund Romberg was born on July 29,1887 in Nagykanizsa, Hungary. He showed musical ability at an early age, but his parents wanted him to go into something more sensible. They sent him to Vienna to study engineering, but he immersed himself in the world of Viennese music.

In 1909, he moved to the United States and settled in New York. His first job was in a pencil factory for seven dollars a week. He soon found work as a pianist in cafes, and formed his own European salon and light music orchestra in 1912.

Sigmund Romberg

By 1917, Romberg had composed 275 numbers for seventeen musicals and revues. His first great success came in 1917 with “Maytime.” In 1924, he wrote one of his greatest hits, “The Student Prince,” which included the immortal pieces "The Drinking Song" and "Serenade."

In 1926, Romberg teamed up with Oscar Hammerstein II and Otto Harbach for “The Desert Song,” and with Hammerstein for "New Moon" in 1928, which featured the standard "Lover Come Back to Me." Throughout the 1930s, he wrote the scores for several movies, including two with Hammerstein..

Romberg died in New York on November 9, 1951. At the time of his death, he was working with lyricist Leo Robin on a musical “The Girl in Pink Tights,” which was produced posthumously on Broadway in 1954. Also in 1954, Jose Ferrer portrayed Romberg in the movie “Deep in My Heart.”

Nelson Eddy sings "One Alone" from Desert Song:

Nelson Eddy & Jeanette McDonald sing "Wanting You" from New Moon:

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