Tuesday, August 16, 2011
A Hungarian Song: Mindig az a perc a legszebb
My friend Laci has been teaching me this Hungarian song, Mindig az a perc a legszebb. It's a beautiful and melancholy melody about longing. Longing for the kiss and the beauty that escapes, that eludes, that one dreams of...
Fortunately the melody comes easily ...the lyrics not so easy. The Hungarian language is so difficult for me to just pronounce and even mimic with fourteen different vowel sounds and strange letter combinations like "gy" making a sound that doesn't seem at all familiar to my English speaking ear or to my mouth. Polish is a hard language but Hungarian makes Polish seem like it will be easier to learn in comparison. With Laci and with my cousin's husband, also Laci, I am learning a handful of songs I can practice and I can try to learn to pronounce the words. All songs are in minor keys and heart wrenching... my favorite kind of song.
The singer here is Katalin Karady, a famous and very beautiful Hungarian actress and singer who appeared in 20 movies prior to WWII. Both tragic experiences and examples of human goodness are a part of her life during the war years. She was in prison for 3 months where she was beaten and tortured. She was rescued and was in bad shape for awhile. However she did remain strong and went on to rescue numerous families who were waiting to be shot by the Arrow Cross guards on the bank of the Danube. After WWII she became more and more disregarded as a star and moved abroad to various countries spending most of her later life in Brazil then later to New York where she died in 1990.