On March 9, 2007, exactly a quarter of a century has passed since the day when the great Utesov disappeared with us. Even if Lazar Iosifovich Vaysbeyn did not take this sonorous name, he would have towered a cliff in the middle of the endless sea of voiceless singers and pevitskas, which today are slightly smaller than the stars in the sky. But Utesov is alone, and he is somewhat reminiscent of the giant Neptune, who stands with his golden trident and graciously looks at the gobies that are frolicking on the shallows. “Riba such”, as they would say in Odessa.
What do you think, the young Lazarus was most upset when he was expelled from the Faig commercial school for his poor academic performance and unsatisfactory discipline? That’s right: the fact that he, most likely, no longer becomes a leper. I beg you silently, do not rummage in dictionaries. This word you still can not find. So in Odessa called small commissioners and grain brokers.
Shob I did not see the Sun at night, if at that time Ledya (that was his family’s name) was thinking himself without music. First of all, he dreamed of becoming a fireman (all madamochki fall on their shiny helmets!), Then a sailor (a shaland in the sea and greetings, a sailor!), But by the age of 14 the music won! Oh, how the sound of the violinist Gershberg, who lived in the neighborhood of Weissbeyn, sounded the sounds! As the blood stirred three successive orchestras, which in the evenings at the Richelieu Monument on Nikolayevsky Boulevard, rather, did not play, but tried to outdo the competitor!
Do not like music in Odessa, if in the city since its foundation there lived an anecdote:
– Nema, I heard that your son is taking violin lessons? So this will not work!
– Why, Syoma?
– So he does not have a hearing!
– Hem, and where is the rumor? He will not listen, he will play himself!
But Utesov did not even start with the couplets (only after a while he will take the first place at the contest of the couplets in Gomel), but with a gymnast. In the school he was known as the best gymnast, working well on rings, parallel bars and a horizontal bar. I wanted to make a living for myself, so that my parents would not be ashamed of him. Oh, those days are gone! Who today can say about his mother, as Leonid Utesov once did: “she was the last, the twenty-first child in her family.”
Ле 17-year-old boy Ledya settled in the Kremenchug Theater of Miniatures. He would live and live in Odessa, and he was incarcerated in Kremenchug! Because of which? – you ask. And I’ll answer: Scherchet la fem! He fell in love with Odessa’s Italian woman, and she was the wife of a police bailiff for a tabloid site. It was worth experiencing fate in such situations? Who first got up, that and the sneakers!
However, Ledya did not tour for long, already in the following year he played in the Odessa troupe
So the path to glory began. And from 1917 Leonid Osipovich came to Odessa only as a guest. At this time he organized in Moscow a small orchestra, with whom he performed in the garden of the Hermitage.
Theaters replaced each other – Theater of Revolutionary Satire (Moscow), Musical Comedy Theater, Palace Theater, Free Theater (Leningrad), Marineh (Riga).
Even after a decade, in 1928, Utesov first came to Paris. Accidentally or on purpose acquainted with professional jazz. March 8, 1929 debuted on the stage of the Leningrad Maly Opera Theater with his jazz band. Spectators literally on their ears stand from his program “Thea-jazz”. It was a genre that was quite unusual for the stage. Utesov connected conducting with entertainers, dances, singing, playing the violin, reading poems, playing the scenes between the musicians and the conductor. The whole performance was clearly arranged, starting with the acquaintance with the public and ending with the farewell song “Poka”, for the translation of which the screen and loudspeakers were installed on the facade of the concert building. From the composition “Gop with the Clamp” the audience literally fans.
In 1934, the screens of cinemas released a film by Grigory Alexandrov “Funny Guys”, in which the whole orchestra of Utesov was shot. The general mood of the picture was determined by the songs of Dunaevsky on the verses of Lebedev-Kumach: “Heart, you do not want peace” and “March of merry guys.” Songs have become very popular. The Congress of Peace and Friendship with the USSR (1937) that was held in London ended with the “March of Merry Children”.
June 1941 finds Utesova during the rehearsal of the new program “Singing, Joking and Playing” in the Moscow “Hermitage”. The orchestra quickly creates the first military program “Beat the enemy!”, In which along with the already well-known songs new works sound: “And more than once, and not two we have taught the enemy”, “Partizan Morozko” and others. During the first year of the war, the orchestra gave over 200 concerts in factories, ships, in the army on the Kalinin Front, constantly including new songs in the program: “Wait for Me”, “In the Dugout”, “Dark Night”, “Odessit Mishka”, antifascist chastushki “Gad no mercy!”. In June 1942, Leonid Utyosov was awarded the title of Honored Artist of the RSFSR.
And the title of People’s Artist of the USSR was awarded to Leonid Utyosov in 1965. He became the first variety artist awarded him. A year later, becoming ill, Leonid Osipovich left the stage, and in December 1981 took the last performance of Utyosov.
Music critics often blamed Utyosov for lack of a singing voice. Leonid Osipovich laughed: “Let it be so! I sing not with a voice – I sing with my heart! “
He died, as you already know, on March 9, 1982. He lived a happy life – surrounded by the cares of the beloved wife of Elena Iosifovna Goldina, and gave her heart to the people!
This great Odessa citizen has much to learn! And if you ever complain to someone that your boss is a total lack of talent, remember Odessa and tell yourself: “Why should he be very smart? It is enough that he is the leader! “. And then go and do not waste time! Your sun is already rising in the east. Your boss won, it’s your turn!