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Hans May


Foto: Gregory Harlip (?-1945)

1886 - 1958

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The film composer Hans May was born as Johannes Mayer in Vienna. He wrote numerous film compositons and also some of the most successful German language songs of the 30s like "Ein Lied geht um die Welt" (33), "Es wird im Leben dir mehr genommen als gegeben" (36) and "Heut' ist der schönste Tag in meinem Leben" (36).

He already demonstrated his musical talent as a child and he played at first concerts at the age of 10. Later he studied music in Vienna and was able to start his professional life as a bandmaster. Later he realised operas and operettas as a director.

His first film compositon came already in 1925 into being for "Ein Sommernachtstraum" (25) and in the next years followed many other silent movies like "Prinzessin Trulala" (26), "Des Königs Befehl" (26), "Die dritte Eskadron" (26), "Unsere Emden" (26), "Klettermaxe" (27), "Kinderseelen klagen euch an" (27), "Sein grösster Bluff" (27), "Die Liebe der Jeanne Ney" (27) and "Wer wird denn weinen, wenn man auseinandergeht?" (29).

Hans May was able to continue his film career successfully during the sound film era of the 30s and he composed the music for "Wien, du Stadt der Lieder" (30), "Der Tiger" (30), "Der Greifer" (30), "Wochenend im Paradies" (31), "Der Stolz der 3. Kompanie" (32), "Trenck" (32), "Die unsichtbare Front" (33) and "Ein Lied geht um die Welt" (33). The song of the same name became a worldwide hit song.

Despite the enormous success of "Ein Lied geht um die Welt" (33) the fate of his Jewish did not pass him by. Already in 1933 he went back to Austria where he continued his career, three years later he fled to England.
But Hans May managed what only few fugitives was granted in the emigration. He was able to continue his career in his professional environment and in the next years he composed many film compositions for British productions.
To his works before his escape to England belong "Wenn du jung bist, gehört dir die Welt" (34), "Incognito" (34), "Ein Stern fällt vom Himmel" (34) and "Heut' ist der schönste Tag in meinem Leben" (36), in England he was engaged for the movies "Mayerlling" (36), "A Star Fell from Heaven" (36), "The Lilac Domino" (37), "I Killed the Count" (39), "Pastor Hall" (40), "Uncensored" (42), "It's That Man Again" (43) and "Twilight Hour" (45).

Hans May remained in England after the war and he wrote the soundtracks for "Lisbon Story" (46), "Bedelia" (46), "The Ghosts of Berkeley Square" (47), "Counterblasts" (48), "Shadow of the Eagle" (50), "A Tale of Five Cities" (51) and "Never Let Me Go" (53).

Only in 1957 he returned to the European continent where he wrote the music for the Austrian movie "Der Kaiser und das Wäschermädel" (57).
Many of Hans May's song were interpreted by the exceptionally gifted singer Joseph Schmidt. As a Jew he shared the same fate like Hans May. Only Joseph Schmidt did not survive his espace and he died in a Swiss detention centre.

Besides his activity as a musician and composer Hans May was also active as a performer during the 20s. He belonge to the co-founders of the cabaret "Die Gondel".

 
Other movies from Hans May:
Die Försterchristel (26) Dürfen wir schweigen? (26) Heimliche Sünder (26) Wir sind vom K. u. K. Infanterie-Regiment (26) Ich hab mein Herz in Heidelberg verloren (26) Das deutsche Mutterherz (26) Spitzen (26) Das süsse Mädel (26) Das graue Haus (26) Als ich wiederkam (26) Mädchenhandel (27) Was ist los im Zirkus Beely? (27) Die Hochstaplerin (27) Der Feldmarschall (27) Erinnerungen einer Nonne (27) Die Achtzehnjährigen (27) Hotelratten (27) Ein Mordsmädel (27) Die Königin des Varietés (27) frühere Verhältnisse (27) Das Spielzeug einer schönen Frau (27) Ihr letztes Liebesabenteuer (27) Der Bettler vom Kölner Dom (27) Arme kleine Sif (27) Sturmflut (27) Höhere Töchter (27) Der grosse Unbekannte (27) Der König der Mittelstürmer (27) Die Stadt der tausend Freuden (27) So küsst nur eine Wienerin (28) Der Weg zur Schande (30) The Flame of Love (30) Hai-Tang (30) Zweimal Hochzeit (30) Ein Burschenlied aus Heidelberg (30) Night Birds (30) Das gestohlene Gesicht (30) Die Bräutigamswitwe (31) Let's Love and Laugh (31) Trara um Liebe (31) Der Draufgänger (31) Es geht um alles (32) Johnn Strauss, k.u.k. Hofkapellmeister (32) Moderne Mitgift (32) Keinen Tag ohne Dich (33) La belle de nuit (34) Gado Bravo (34) Bleeke Bet (34) My Song Goes Round the World (34) Salto in die Seligkeit (34) The Student's Romance (35) De big van het regiment (35) No Monkey Business (35) Southern Roses (36) Everything in Life (36) Under Secret Orders (37) The Stars Look Down (40) Paradis perdu (40) The Army Lays the Rails (42) Back-Room Boy (42) Thunder Rock (42) The Hundred Pound Window (44) The World Owes Me a Living (45) Madonna of the Seven Moons (45) Waltz Time (45) Murder in Reverse (45) The Wicked Lady (45) The Trojan Brothers (46) The Laughing Lady (46) Spring Song (46) Green Fingers (47) Brighton Rock (47) My Brother Jonathan (48) The Three Weird Sisters (48) Uneasy Terms (48) No Room at the Inn (48) Movie-Go-Round (49) Warning to Wantons (49) The 20 Questions Murder Mystery (50) Guilt Is My Shadow (50) Carissima (50) La rivale dell'imperatrice (51) Hell Is Sold Out (51) Ir Ha'Ohelim (51) Tall Headlines (52) Brelan d'as (52) Escape Route (52) Rough Shoot (53) The Tell-Tale Heart (53) The Gypsy and the Gentleman (58)

Actor:
Waltz Time (45)


 
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