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Polish tango in Soviet Russia - Utomlennoe solntse, 1936

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Uploaded on Sep 20, 2007

The „Last Sunday" -- erroneously called „THAT Last Sunday" -- was composed by the Polish composer Jerzy Petersburski in 1936. It is a nostalgic tango with lyrics by Zenon Friedwald describing the final meeting of former lovers who are parting. The Polish title was: "To Ostatnia Niedziela" ("The Last Sunday"). The song was extremely popular and was performed by numerous artists (the best known performance by the pre-war Polish singer Mieczysław Fogg). Along the way, it first gained the nick-name of "Suicide Tango" due to its sad lyric (although, the real „suicie song" in the night restaurants of Warsaw -- where the shoot in the brow at 12 at night was not an unusual happening - was in 1930s another sad „Sunday": the „Gloomy Sunday" (in Polish: „Smutna niedziela") by a Hungarian composer Rezső Seress.
Soon, it became an international hit; in the US sung by Billie Holiday.
But Polish „Last Sunday" also had a terribly sad fate. During World War II In the concentrations camps it was often played while Jewish prisoners were led to the gas chambers and ovens, to be executed.
During World War II its Russian version was prepared by Iosif Alveg and performed by Leonid Utyosov under the title of "Weary Sun" (Russian: "Utomlyennoye Solntse"). After World War II, the song remained largely successful and appeared in a number of films, including Yuriy Norshteyn's 1979 "Tale of Tales" (considered by many international critics to be the greatest animated film ever made), the award-winning Krzysztof Kieślowski's "White" (1994) and Nikita Mikhalkov's "Burnt by the Sun" of the same year. The Russian title of the song also became the name-sake for the latter film and -- as the result - for even more educated and worldly Russians, nowadays, it is considered as the „Russian national song"!

Recording: Alexandr Cfasman Orkestr, Russian vocal refrain by Pavel Mihailov - Utomlennoe Solnce (J.Petersburski), Noginskij Zawod 1932

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