Sandauer conducts operetta selections from 'Viktoria und ihr Husar'
and 'Die Blume von Hawaii' (Paul Abraham) on Philips P 10115 R from
the early nineteen fifties.
On Philips P 10110 R he leads 'The Merry Widow' - Die lustige Witwe
(Franz Lehar) and 'White horse Inn' - Im Weissen Rössl (Ralph Benatzky).
Jewels from Circus Princess, Count of Luxemburg, Frederike, The Bat,
Paganini and The Cousin from Nowhere - with Walter Anton Dotzer, Ilona
Steingruber and the "Wiener Symphoniker", Heinz Sandauer conductor
(Philips S 06047 R).
Sandauer the cocktail hour pianist (Philips P 10304 R).
of the Cole Porter and Gershwin LPs were later released on Palace M-710:
Love for Sale, Lady Be Good, Night and Day, coupled with "Twilight
Concert" (Scherzo from Midsummer Night's Dream, The Young Prince
and the Young Princess, and Fledermaus Overture).
Concert No. 5
Cover by Alex Steinweiss
Loesser's The Most Happy Fella with Jo Sullivan, Art Lund, Susan Johnson,
Shorty Long and Mona Paulee.
français du disque CDF1: Nelson Mass (Haydn) (Missa in Angustiis)
with Jonathan Sternberg conducting the Vienna Opera Orchestra. The singers
are Theresa Stich-Randall, Rudolf Schock, Mona Paulee and Gottlob Frick.
Mona Paulee visited Europe in the summer of 1952 and also performed
in Vienna, the obvious thing for producer Marcel Prawy to do was to
obtain taped performances of this beautiful voice for release on Don
Gabor's Remington label. Because of the relatively good quality of
the sound, at first it was suspected that the recordings could have
been radio recordings made by the OR, Österreichischer Rundfunk (Austrian
Public Broadcasting Service). However they were produced by Marcel
Prawy himself and made in the Musikverein on Wednesday, July 23, 1952.
Mona Paulee sang various selections of music Marcel Prawy had come
to know and love when he was living in New York before and during
World War Two and must have attended many Broadway shows. The list
with recording dates indicates that on the day of recording in the
Musikvereinssaal it was the Tonkünstler Orchestra that was led by
famous pianist-conductor-composer Heinz Sandauer, "Der Sandauer" as
the popular bandleader was called. But the mention of that orchestra
was most likely the usual and easy way to indicate a planned recording
which was supervised by Prawy. The LP-covers however mention that
Heinz Sandauer conducted his own orchestra.
Sandauer (Vienna, January 1, 1911 - August 5, 1979) was a composer,
conductor, arranger and orchestrator. In the last capacity he
worked for Franz Léhar, Emmerich Kálmán
and Robert Stolz. As a youth he "became acquainted with
nearly all the secondary schools in Vienna". And he "must
have consumed about ten stalwart and determined female piano
teachers" before studying at the Vienna State Music Academy,
as Sandauer writes on the back of the cover of Philips P10304R.
The talented Sandauer received his degree with distinction.
to the info given on an early edition of the
AEIOU web site he took up the post of conductor of the Viennese
Radio Orchestra (Wiener Rundfunkorchester)
in 1937. After the Second World War - from 1946 on - he worked
for the radio station Red-White-Red (Rot-Weiß-Rot) and
later for the Austrian Radio and Television Organization ORF.
In 1963 he took up the post of professor at the 'Wiener Musikhochschule'
where he taught the lighter side of music and jazz. He
is the author of a course for jazz piano for the advanced jazz
Sandauer made numerous recordings with various artists who sang
popular songs and selections from operettas. He composed songs
and a few more serious scores too: 'Concerto Ritmico for Two
Solo Percussion Instruments and Orchestra', 'Hungaria' (for
Piano and Orchestra), 'Concerto for Trumpet and Orchestra',
and 'Swanee River', subtitled 'Variations for Orchestra on a
taken from Elite Special SOLP-439 on which he plays together
with pianist Peter Kreuder and a rhythm section
studied under Austrian composer Joseph Marx at the Viennese
State Academy for Music and Dramatic Art (Staatsakademie - today
Universität für Musik und Darstellende Kunst) and
later he became a professor at this institute himself. Many
studied with Joseph Marx who was a romantic but also a conservative
and one best option to learn the basics of form, harmony and
full-blooded orchestrations, and for acquiring the necessary
skills as well.
started writing music for films when he was in his twenties.
In all he wrote scores for twenty movies and arranged scores
for many other motion pictures, a.o. the science fiction movie
'Destination Moon' from 1952 (in 1957 Sandauer recorded his
arrangement of Leith Stevens's score in stereo with the Vienna
He also arranged several songs of his teacher, Joseph Marx.
Together with Willy Schmidt-Gentner he arranged Marx's "A
New Years Hymn" (Ein Neujahrshymnus) for mixed choir, organ
and orchestra, originally composed in 1914. Sandauer's orchestrated
version was heard in the motion picture "Cordula"
records Sandauer's name became famous in many European countries,
especially in the nineteen thirties and fifties. In the US he
appeared on Urania 8004: "Music Under the Stars" with
selections in the semi-classical style of pieces written by
Christian Sinding, Claude Debussy, Riccardo Drigo, Edwin Lemare,
Zdenek Fibich, Anton Rubinstein, Peter Tchaikovsky, Joachim
Raff, Franz Schubert, Felix Mendelssohn-Bartoldy, Charles Gounod,
Ignac Paderewski, Richard Wagner, and Frederic Chopin. Soloists
on that disk were violinist Walter Schneiderhan and pianist
Otto Schulhof; Heinz Sandauer conducting the Vienna Philharmusica
Symphony Orchestra in this recording.
Philips Records he conducted operettas for which - so it seems
- he arranged the scores in his flamboyant, entertaining style.
P 10109 R - Das Land des Lächelns (The Land of Smiles)
P 10110 R - Die Lustige Witwe (The Merry Widow) and Im Weissen
Rössl (White Horse's Inn);
P 10115 R - Viktoria und Ihr Husar and Blume von Hawai (Flower
P 10214 P - Gräfin Maritza (Countess Maritza) and Maske
in Blau (Mask in Blue).
P 10215 R - Frederike and Schön ist die Welt (Franz Lehar).
on these records from the nineteen fifties are Sari Barabas,
Maria Mucke, Gerda Scheyrer, Hedy Fassler, Rudolf Christ, Hainz
Roland, Toni Niessner, Walter Anton Dotzer, Friedl Pöltinger,
a.o. with the Vienna Broadcasting Orchestra and Academy Choir.
arrangements are showish, skillful and have verve as have the
arrangements for the recordings by mezzo-soprano Mona Paulee.
They also show some traits that are typical of the music of
German movies, of radio shows and of the television shows of
the nineteen fifties and sixties. Heinz Sandauer was for the
Austrians what the elderly Louis Levy with his orchestra and
big band was for the Brits and the British film industry.
- Rudolf .A. Bruil, 2005.
would not have been a better arranger and conductor to accompany the
versatile voice of Mona Paulee in songs of American musical shows.
Paulee around 1952
Picture taken from Remington R-199-120 and
edited by R.A.B.
Mona Paulee's selections were too many to release on just one
LP record, Don Gabor cleverly released the songs on three different
discs and added on the B-Sides mostly excerpts of classical concertos,
symphonies and operas from his standing catalogue. This not only meant
that it was necessary to buy all three records instead of one in order
to have all songs, but the releases did initiate many consumers to
the field of classical music and to the Remington catalog of course.
records were issued in the special 'Twilight Concert' series.
Paulee was an attractive addition to the section "American musical
shows" of the Remington catalog, which listed also singers Jean
Campbell and Bob Dale (R-199-115, South Pacific).
there was Christina Carroll in the Remington catalog on R-149-41.
On RLP-149-46 with Jerome Kern favorites, she sang Smoke Gets In Your
Eyes, Yesterdays, They'll Never Believe Me, The Last Time I saw Paris,
All The Things You Are, with the Austrian Symphony Orchestra conducted
by Max Schònherr, alternated with a few selections played by
Fred Clement And His Orchestra.
There were more singers on Gabor's disks: Elizabeth Humphries
and Lucille Graham singing selections from The King and I (Hammerstein)
with Frank Chacksfield and His Orchestra (R-149-55).
But with Mona Psaulee he had a large number of songs that insured
increased sales, because the voice of Mona Paulee is not only
beautiful, but also expressive, and the singer conveys much more than
ease and spaciousness. One could say that her timbre is ephemeral
and often touching, attributes which are not always encountered in
Mona Paulee sings Romberg - One
Kiss, Softly as in a Morning Sunrise, Lover Come Back To Me - and
Gershwin - Somebody Loves Me - coupled with Scherzo From
'A Midsummer Night's Dream (Mendelssohn), The Young Prince And The
Young Princess From 'Scheherazade (Rimsky-Korsakov), Overture To 'Die
Fledermaus' (Johann Strauss). Issued as Twilight Concert No. 3 (selections
also later released on Paris P-125).
Mona Paulee sings Gershwin - The
Man I Love - and Friml - L'Amour, toujours l'amour, Indian
Love Call - coupled with excerpts from compositions by Tchaikovsky:
Waltz Of The Flowers, Pizzicato Ostinato from Symphony No. 4, and
Conzonetta (Andante) and Finale (Allegro) from the Violin Concerto
with Michèle Auclair. Issued as Twilight Concert No.4.
Concert No. 4
Cover by Alex Steinweiss
to listen to Mona Paulee singing Gershwin's The Man I Love
with Heinz Sandauer conducting.
Mona Paulee sings Cole Porter -
Love for Sale, Night and Day - and Gershwin - Lady Be Good,
coupled with excerpts from compositions by Bizet, Puccini, Rimsky-Korsakov
Issued as Twilight Concert No. 5
Several songs were also issued on 7" discs like REP 65 and REP
68 with Lover Come Back to Me and Love for Sale respectively.
Plymouth P-12-67 Gabor released The Man I Love, Somebody
Loves Me and Lady Be Good together with selections from
Cavalleria Rusticana and Tosca taken from the classical Remington
are all lovely performances. Gershwin's "The man I Love"
is very expressive with a powerful orchestral arrangement written
by Sandauer with varying tempi and a few short phrases of the piano.
Friml's songs are romantic, Porter's have a longing atmosphere.
Romberg selections were of course not only commercially appropriate
as Sigmund Romberg (also a Hungarian and fellow countryman of Gabor,
born in Nagykanisza on 29 July, 1887) had died on November 9 of 1951.
Romberg's songs enjoyed a renewed popularity, but his shows did not
survive as they were old fashioned. "Softly, as in a Morning
Sunrise" is his most well known song and maintained itself
mainly in many a fine jazz performance (like the one by Shelley Manne
and his Men at the Manne Hole on the two LP release on Lester Konig's
Records), or pianists Sonny Clark and Wynton Kelly respectively.
Paulee sings this gem beautifully, though Sandauer plays the song
in a rather stressed tango mood and the performance reaches an intensity
of its own, quite different if compared to the beauty of matron Helen
Traubel's exquisite performance accompanied by Jose Ferrer
on piano, in the movie "Deep in my Heart", Sigmund
Romberg's biopic from a few years later (1954).
liner notes on Remington R-199-120 give a short biography:
Paulee - Mezzo Soprano
enviable position in the fields of concert, opera and radio
is held today by sparkling, dark-haired Mona Paulee. A beautiful
and warm voice, musicianship of extraordinary versatility
and penetrating interpretative gifts combine with a vivacious
temperament to make Mona Paulee an appeal to the musical sophisticates
and on other occasions speak a simple heart-to-heart language.
Mona Paulee was born in Canada but was brought up in the United
States. She received her early music education in Portland,
Oregon, and pursued her music goal through many arduous phases,
beginning in night clubs and movie houses, then to concerts
on the west coast, and a debut with the San Francisco Opera.
Eventually she became a member of the Metropolitan.
While still devoting part of her time each season to operatic
appearances, lovely Miss Paulee has concentrated more and
more on recital, radio and television appearances. Her concert
tours are more extensive and she is often guest star on the
top programs of the air. During 1950 and 1951, she made two
tours through Central America where she scored brilliant new
successes. She appeared in Europe, for the first time in the
summer of 1952, and was acclaimed in England, Scandinavia
and Holland for her concerts and broadcasts there. However,
the greatest triumphs in the career of Mona Paulee have been
her New York recitals which are hailed by the Metropolitan
press as musical events of first order.
"Her voice is the most voluptuous mezzo-soprano to be heard
this side of the ocean..." - New York Herald Tribune
"The luscious quality of her mezzo-soprano in the lower register
was carried through to the high notes with a striking ring
in its timbre. She was taken to the heart of the audience
at once." - Washington Star
were the positive reviews in newspapers when she performed in Oklahoma,
Tacoma, San Diego, Cincinnati, Philadelphia and New York. The Philadelphia
Bulletin spoke of "The natural beauty and strength of her voice
and the warmth and imagination of her interpretative style..."
and the critic of the San Diego Union said: "Mona Paulee, exotic
brunette, whose glorious mezzo-soprano voice scored a tremendous triumph,
impressed with the beauty of her vibrant, richly colored voice, animated
by intelligence and fine musicianship."
the SoundFountain Archive)
1956 she had a minor role next to Jo Sullivan, Art Lund, Susan Johnson,
and Shorty Long in Frank Loesser's musical "The Most Happy
Fella". The conductor was Herbert Green. The complete
musical was recorded under the supervision of Goddard Lieberson. This
was a phonographic first for a complete musical (as was Lieberson's
famous production of 'Porgy and Bess' for a complete opera). The show
was issued on 3 Lp's (O3L-240).
of "The Most Happy Fella" were released on Columbia OL
5118. In the early seventies these recordings were electronically
re-recorded to simulate stereo, the odd practice which was followed
at the time for commercial reasons, in most cases to the detriment
of the sound quality. The record with selections only has one number
featuring Mona Paulee and not even in a solo. To hear more of her
the complete show has to be owned.
Mona Paulee was the winner of the "Metropolitan Auditions of
the Air Competition" in 1941. From 1938 on she followed daily
lessons with Mr. John A. Patton, who served on the faculty
of the University of California at Berkeley; Occidental College, at
Los Angeles; the Colorado College of Education; and the Utica Conservatory
of Music, New York. He is widely known as the 'Voice Doctor of Hollywood'.
Miss Paulee made her debut at the Metropolitan Opera, the Met, singing
Gianetta in 'L'élisir d'amore' (Donizetti), she had given solo
performances with the Pasadena Bach Society, had been enrolled with
the San Francisco Opera Company, and sang Lola in 'Cavalleria Rusticana',
Nicklaus in 'Tales of Hoffmann', Frederick in 'Mignon',
Amneris in 'Aida', and Maddalena in 'Rigoletto'. She
even toured with the Columbia Concerts Opera Company during the war
and had the title role - with Regina Resnik and Winifred Heidt alternating
- in "Carmen" (as mentioned by Victoria Etnier Villamil
in her book "From Johnson's Kids to Lemonade Opera", 2004).
newspaper clip of Mona Paulee (as Lady Thiang) and Jackie Metcalf
(as the Crown Prince) in the Starlight Musicals Production of
Richard Rogers and Oscar Hammerstein's "The King and I"
(in Indianapolis, 1959).
Image submitted by Bill Schumacher,
Paulee also sang in numerous concerts in the nineteen thirties, forties
and fifties. She had minor parts and significant parts. She was Hirtenknabe
in Mozart's 'Die Zauberflöte' (The Magic Flute) and sang
in 'Don Giovanni' under Bruno Walter in 1942. She appeared
in Charpentier's 'Louise' in 1943 under Sir Thomas Beecham.
She sang in Mahler's Fourth Symphony under Richard Burgin in Boston
April 3, 4 and 5, 1955, she sang in Verdi's Requiem alongside
soprano Francis Yeend, tenor Gabor Carelli (substituted
by Jack Waggoner on April 4th) and bass Yi-Kwei Sze, Sir Thomas
Beecham conducting. A year before she had sung once again in Vienna
in works by Gabrieli and Monteverdi (Paul Hindemith's Instrumentation)
with among others Uta Graf (soprano), Waldemar Kmentt
(tenor) and Wolfram Mertz (bass), Paul Hindemith conducting
the Wiener Singakademie and Wiener Symphoniker (1954). In 1959 she
once again starred in a musical. This time with Jackie Metcalf in
"The Kind and I".
her parts were important, only a few times she was top of the bill.
That is often the fate of a mezzo-soprano who has to yield the prime
part to the soprano. She loved to perform in many genres and she was
the playful, warm character and her beautiful voice was her best asset,
the vehicle that would take her anywhere.
Paulee did not make many recordings and what is left to witness her
beautiful and lovely voice are practically only the Remington recordings
which are to be cherished. There is however a very rare recording
on Club français du disque (CDF1) of Haydn's 'Nelson Mass'
(Missa in Angustiis) with Jonathan Sternberg conducting the
Vienna Opera Orchestra. The other singers are Theresa Stich-Randall,
Rudolf Schock, and Gottlob Frick.
A. Bruil - September 3rd , 2004
website of the California State University, Los Angeles, had a short
entry on Mona Paulee:
"Mona Paulee (Emerita, Music) passed away in September, 1995.
A mezzo-soprano with the Met during the 1940s and 1950s, she was often
heard in the Metropolitan Opera Saturday live broadcasts. She had
performed in Europe and throughout Central and South America. Paulee
joined the faculty in 1972 and retired in 1987. She is survived by
her daughter, Lani, and two grandchildren."
It was mentioned that the university offers a scholarship named after
There is some confusion about the date of birth of Mona Paulee. There
is mention that she was born in 1911, a document of the Library of
Congress mentions 1916, yet another source says that she was born
October 4, 1912 in Edmonton, Canada.
Rudolf A. Bruil.