Seymour Rechtzeit

Seymour Rexite (January 18, 1914 – October 14, 2002), originally Shayele Rechtzeit, was a Polish American singer and actor. He was a significant figure in Yiddish theatre in the United States, and with his wife Miriam Kressyn he performed on the radio over four decades, performing pop standards in Yiddish. He also served as president of the Hebrew Actors' Union.

Born in Piotrków Trybunalski, Congress Poland, and a child prodigy, Rexite immigrated to the United States in 1920, along with his father, a cantor, and his older brother Jack Rechtzeit, an actor and songwriter. Several years later, immigration quotas prevented Rexite's mother and other siblings from emigrating from Poland, so Rexite sang a song, which his brother Jack had composed, before President Calvin Coolidge which so moved that he granted them entry visas.

At age 13, he took over the lead in the Yiddish musical The Rabbi's Melody when 30-year-old Ludwig Satz left to play in Potash and Perlmutter on Broadway. Unlike Satz, who had been a grown man playing a teenage boy, he was the actual age of the character. He later starred in The Song of the Ghetto at a theatre on Second Avenue in the Yiddish Theater District opposite the famous soprano Isa Kremer. He first appeared on the radio, singing in Yiddish, in 1927. In the 1930s he flirted with crossover success, performing with The Dorsey Brothers in late-night shows at Billy Rose's Casino de Paree, but decided to focus on the Yiddish-language side of his career.

He married Miriam Kressyn, another star of the Yiddish stage, in 1943. The two had a long-running radio program on WEVD radio, performing Yiddish translations of pop music standards (largely their own translations of everything from Irving Berlin to Man of La Mancha) as well as songs written in his native language.

Kressyn died at age 86 in 1996; they had no children. Rexite died in 2002 in New York City. The couple is buried under the family name Rechtzeit in Block 67 of Mount Hebron Cemetery. This section is reserved for those who were part of New York Yiddish theater and is maintained by the Yiddish Theatrical Alliance.

Birth and Death Data: Born January 18, 1908 (Piotrków Trybunalski), Died October 14, 2002 (New York City)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1925 - 1942

Roles Represented in DAHR: tenor vocal

Notes: Name also spelled on disc labels as Seymor Rechtzeit.

= Recordings are available for online listening.
= Recordings were issued from this master. No recordings issued from other masters.

Recordings (Results 1-25 of 34 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Victor BVE-62770 10-in. 7/7/1930 Mein Yidishe mame Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BVE-62773 10-in. 7/7/1930 Kadish Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-047951 10-in. 3/14/1940 Ich sing Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental quintet vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-047952 10-in. 3/14/1940 Belz Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental quintet vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-047953 10-in. 3/14/1940 Zlatapol Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental quintet vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-047954 10-in. 3/14/1940 Mazel Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental quintet vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-051457 10-in. 6/20/1940 Der alter zigeuner Abe Ellstein Orchestra ; Bagelman Sisters ; Seymour Rechtzeit Female vocal duet and male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-051458 10-in. 6/20/1940 Dem nayem sher Abe Ellstein Orchestra ; Bagelman Sisters ; Seymour Rechtzeit Female vocal duet and male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-058608 10-in. 12/19/1940 Ich hob dich tzufil lieb Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-058609 10-in. 12/19/1940 Der yiddisher nigun Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-058610 10-in. 12/19/1940 Ich vel varten of dir Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-058611 10-in. 12/19/1940 Vus di vilst Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-062890 10-in. 3/26/1941 Mein yiddishe mame Abe Ellstein Orchestra ; Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-062891 10-in. 3/26/1941 Misirlou Abe Ellstein Orchestra ; Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-062892 10-in. 3/26/1941 Mein freilich lied Abe Ellstein Orchestra ; Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-062893 10-in. 3/26/1941 Shvarze oigen Abe Ellstein Orchestra ; Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-065922 10-in. 6/5/1941 Keinmool Abe Ellstein Orchestra ; Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-065923 10-in. 6/5/1941 Hopkele Abe Ellstein Orchestra ; Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-065924 10-in. 6/5/1941 Unser yidish folk Abe Ellstein Orchestra ; Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-065925 10-in. 6/5/1941 In der liebe Abe Ellstein Orchestra ; Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-065926 10-in. 6/5/1941 Liebe Abe Ellstein Orchestra ; Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-065927 10-in. 6/5/1941 A freilich land Abe Ellstein Orchestra ; Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-065928 10-in. 6/5/1941 Di, di zun, un di shteren Abe Ellstein Orchestra ; Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-065929 10-in. 6/5/1941 Yidishkeit Abe Ellstein Orchestra ; Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
Victor BS-068425 10-in. 11/26/1941 Shulem tanz Abe Ellstein Orchestra ; Seymour Rechtzeit Male vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble vocalist, tenor vocal  
(Results 1-25 of 34 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Rechtzeit, Seymour," accessed April 24, 2024, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/116690.

Rechtzeit, Seymour. (2024). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved April 24, 2024, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/116690.

"Rechtzeit, Seymour." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2024. Web. 24 April 2024.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/116690

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