Top operetta composer from 1910s thru 1930s
ASCAP Charter member
Composer Rudolf Friml was born in Prague, Czechoslovakia on December 7, 1879. Living in Czechoslovakia, he attended the Prague Conservatory and studied piano with composers Dvorak and Jiranek.
In his twenties, Friml toured throughout Europe and the United States as a concert pianist with violinist Jan Kubelik. Soon after his last American tour in 1906, Friml moved to New York City where he began contributing his compositions to stage productions. In 1912, he replaced the legendary Victor Herbert as the composer for the Broadway musical The Firefly.
From 1912 through the early 1930’s, Friml would work on several other stage scores including High Jinks, The Peasant Girl, Katinka, You’re in Love, Sometime, Glorianna, Tumble In, The Little Whopper, June Love, The Blue Kitten, Rose-Marie, The Vagabond King, No Foolin”, The Wild Rose and The Three Musketeers.
In 1934, Friml moved to Hollywood to work on film musicals. His filmography includes The Vagabond King, The Lottery Bride, Bachelor Bait, The Return of Chandu, One Frightened Night, Sunset of Power, Chandu on the Magic Island, Rose-Marie, The Firefly, Katakomby, Za Tichych Noci, Crazy House, Up In Arms, Jealousy, Northwest Outpost and Teenage Thunder.
While Friml worked alone on more than half of his compositions he also collaborated with many of the greatest lyricists of his time including Otto Harbach, P.G. Wodehouse, Rida Johnson Young, Oscar Hammerstein II, Brian Hooker, Cliff Grey and Harold Atteridge. The Friml catalog includes such hits as “Giannina Mia”, “Love Is Like a Firefly”, “When a Maid Comes Knocking at Your Door”, “Sympathy”, “Something Seems a Tingle-ing-eling”, “Love’s Own Kiss”, “Katinka”, “Not Now but Later”, “’Tis the End, So Farewell”, “Allah’s Holiday”, “Rackety Coo”, “L’Amour, Toujours, l’Amour”, “On the Blue Lagoon”, “In Love With Love”, “Somewhere in My Heart”, “You’re in Love”, “Cutie”, “The Door of Her Dreams”, “Rose-Marie”, “The Mounties”, “Indian Love Call”, “Pretty Things”, “Totem Tom-Tom”, “Song of the Vagabonds”, “Some Day”, “Tomorrow”, “Only a Rose”, “Huguette Waltz”, “Love Me Tonight”, “Nocturne”, “Wild Rose”, “One Golden Hour”, “Give Me One Hour”, “March of the Musketeers”, “Ma Belle”, “Your Eyes”, “Donkey Serenade” and “I Have the Love”.
Rudolf Friml, a 1914 charter member of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, died in Hollywood, California on November 12, 1972.