Cover

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Half Title, Title Page, Copyright

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Contents

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pp. v-vi

Preface

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pp. vii-viii

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1: Flashback

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pp. 1-21

It is a fine day in the spring of '92. I am arriving at the Pico gate of the 20th Century Fox studio, as I have done many times over the years. Normally the feeling of reporting for work on a new show is one of pleasant anticipation; today, not quite so. ...

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2: Hebrew Theatre

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pp. 22-36

I cannot say that my parents were overjoyed at my decision to leave the kibbutz and follow a career in which the chances of success were so slim. Still, to their credit, it must be said that they did not entirely close the door on my ambitions. ...

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3: …Trippingly on the Tongue

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pp. 37-55

My excitement about being in London was not marred by the fact that it is essentially a city of unrelieved gray—even on its brighter and sunnier days, few enough in number, it looks bleak. It does not feel bleak, however. The dead things are not really dead, the past is there as more than a memorial. ...

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4: The Kindness of Strangers

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pp. 56-72

I'd been in England close to three years, and the ups and downs of a struggling actor's career had begun to take their toll. I was nowhere near defeat, but I had started to wonder whether all this would lead to any more than just the taste of world theatre. Perhaps the training at RADA and on the British stage was no more than preparation ...

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5: The Guitars of the Exile

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pp. 73-92

The early 1950s were a glorious time for me in England. The theatre was home and family, the music at all times a source of incredible pleasure, and I began to be paid an actual living wage for what I enjoyed doing most! ...

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6: East End, West End, and the Palace

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pp. 93-112

At the end of the decade, in 1949, my career took another big step forward. I was cast in yet another long theatre engagement—the result of a party, which gives the lie to the often-repeated warning by veteran show folk that social occasions never lead to professional advancement. ...

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7: How Much Does He Want?

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pp. 113-133

Somehow I had entertained the notion that Katharine Hepburn and Humphrey Bogart would be prototypical American superstars. How wrong I was' Neither of them was remotely like the kings and queens of filmdom whom I met and worked with later in my career. ...

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8: America—Love at First Sight

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pp. 134-151

If a lullaby is a song that puts you to sleep, then there is no such thing as a lullaby of Broadway. It was a small culture shock to arrive from the staid and stolid life of Britain and face New York's nervous energy. Right off the bat, it was clear that I would never think or behave like a tourist or permit myself to be treated as one. ...

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9: Folk Lure

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pp. 152-183

In England I had cultivated and cherished my contact with other folksingers. In America there was so much more folk music—a veritable feast. When I arrived in December 1954, the Weavers were still blacklisted, no new records of theirs were available, and their public performances had dwindled in number ...

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10: Peregrinations

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pp. 184-219

It was evident to me that American audiences love talent, love performers, even make a fetish of some of them. There are no kings and no aristocrats in America; Americans find their royalty elsewhere—among the wealthy, the powerful, and the talented. ...

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11: The Hills Are Alive

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pp. 204-218

By 1959, my fifth year in the United States, I had covered some distances—artistic, emotional, and geographical. I had done well in the theatre, in television, in movies, and I was considered one of the mainstays of the folk scene, the prime exponent of international folk songs. What next? ...

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12: Union Dues

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pp. 219-248

During the first year of The Sound of Music, 1960, the Actors' Equity collective-bargaining agreement with the League of New York Theatres ran out, and the negotiations for a new contract were not going well. Although at the time I was not involved with any union matters, ...

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13: Come, Let Us Reason Together

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pp. 249-266

It seems that l have conducted my life on two different emotional Planes: one lighthearted, gregarious, even frivolous; the other Politically and socially involved and following a serious social and moral Commitment. The activism based on this commitment was not limited To union work or even to the arts. ...

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14: I Sing and I’ll Keep Singing

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pp. 267-288

In the beginning I was drawn to folk music because of its storytelling aspect, because this was the musical tradition I was brought up in, and maybe also because my musical aptitude did not extend to more involved and sophisticated styles. Had it not been for folk songs ...

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15: Versatility

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pp. 289-320

From time to time people would ask me, "How come you do everything so well?" My answer is invariably, "Simple. Whatever I don't do well, I don't do." The truth of the matter is that there are many things I don't do well at all. Some of them I am forced to do from time to time because of the demands of my profession. ...

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16: Tevye

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pp. 321-354

If there are such things as preordained events, then I was surely destined to play Tevye the Milkman. Not only did I have the requisite talent and the voice for this musical role, I also had a personal background that put me much closer to it than many who would need a longer reach in order to make the part their own. ...

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17: From Jerusalem to Jerusalem

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pp. 355-365

The role of Tevye came naturally to me for a number of reasons. The musical tradition I inherited from my family was That of the shtetl and of the later emergence from it. These were the Songs of the pale of settlement, of amcho, the simple working people, Of things sacred and of things secular. ...

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18: Entebbe, Vanessa, and Other Thoughts

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pp. 366-381

In the usual commercial haste that motivates most studio executives, the heroic feat of the Entebbe raid in July 1976 spawned three—count 'em, three—movies; all of them were filmed within weeks of the incident. The funny thing is that all of them were good movies and were successful, ...

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19: Zorba

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pp. 382-405

As a rule, an actor brings to a role whatever he can from the arsenal of knowledge and emotion he carries as his personal baggage. Whatever you don't have, you purloin from literature and from imagination. In lifting a role from the printed page you add those elements, in a sense subsuming parts of your own life for the enrichment of the character. ...

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20: Toward the Millennium

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pp. 406-428

All that is left for me before concluding this narrative is to cast a last long look backward and a quick glance forward.
I consider 1993 and 1994 milestones, both in terms of world events that affected my life and in terms of personal history. ...

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Epilogue

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pp. 429-430

Having recalled here as much as I could, I do not know to what extent I was able to uncover any hidden demons and, if I did, whether I was able to exorcise them. Looking back at my years, I think about the roads traveled; about the times I tried to hide and the times I refused to hide; about the static and the moving; about what I loved and what I loathed. ...

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Postscript 2002

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pp. 431-442

The events I described in the final pages of this book took place more than eight years ago. In the interim so much has changed the world and our perception of it that I feel the need to take stock once more. The events that brought together Yassir Arafat and Yitzhak Rabin at the White House and gave rise to so much hope, expectation, ...

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Postscript 2014

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pp. 443-450

The first edition of this book ended on the South lawn of the White House with the handshake between Yassir Arafat and Yitzhak Rabin. For a later edition I added a chapter taking note of events that happened after 1993 right up to the horror of 9/11. ...

Index

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pp. 451-460

Photographs

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