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Talking to the singer about money, family and new objectives

Quick confession - Michal David: on Unrealistic Dreams

Karolína Lišková
03.Feb 2018
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8 minutes to read

His timeless hits are known to every generation. Michal David has been on the Czech music scene for forty years now and his concerts are still sold out. He keeps his energy level despite his mature age. The singer always has plenty of ideas and looks forward to each new project. In an interview with Luxury Prague Life he confided how he recharges his batteries or what is it like to again come to a first class in school with his grandson, Sebastian, who unfortunately did not inherit his grandfather´s musical talent… 

Michal likes strong machines
Successful hitmaker
Michal David doesn't use stylist!

Michal, you always in December, January vanish on holiday - you must be pretty relaxed for the new year...

Well, we actually didn´t manage to relax yet. On New Year's Eve I sang at King's Casino in Rozvadov border crossing at Leon´s. Even Karel Gott was there, Smokie, Queen revival and so forth, it was a super New Year's Eve. But then we took off to the Maldives, unfortunately only for five days, because we had been invited there by a friend. This time we have not had our Tenerife break. It was quite hectic and that 13-hour journey back home… well it was no great rest. Moreover December was very, very demanding, I had about eighteen concerts. So the real, well-deserved holiday is still ahead, postponed to the spring holidays, when my grandson gets a break from school.

Do you know yet what is waiting for you this year?

Of course, there are lots. I am preparing a tour, which is called the Allianz Open Air Tour Michal David 2018, it will all be in amphitheatres, in summer cinemas, just out of doors basically. The tour starts 30. May and will last all June. My guest is Markéta Konvičková. I am looking forward to it, she is a great singer and we have prepared an excellent duet that we will now shoot, including a clip. We will even record it in Czech as well as English, because we have an offer for it to be shown on a German Chart Show. Of course we want to present the song as well as the clip before the tour itself so that people would already know it.

Why did you choose Markéta Konvičková in particular as your guest?

As far as I am concerned, there must always be some connection, for example when I was sharing a concert with Lucka Vondráčková we had a duet It Was Love and now it has some 12 million views on YouTube, so it made sense. And when I saw Markéta sing at Český slavík (English: Czech Nightingale) ´Once Upon a Time in the West´ by Věra Špinarová, I have to admit that she got under my skin and at that moment I realised that this is the right guest for my tour.

Pronájem bytu se zahradou, 98 m2 – Praha
Pronájem bytu se zahradou, 98 m2 – Praha, Praha 5

Michal, you are 57 … where the heck do you get so much energy from? You have been in the music world for over 40 years and you still go on and still sell out the whole of O2 arena, in December you didn´t even get a chance to get off the stage ....

But I do relax. I balance it out. In February are go off for 10 days to the Maldives, we stop off for 3 days in Atlantis in Dubai, where I want to take Sebastian into the aqua world, to swim with dolphins and that will be just fantastic. I get completely relaxed that way. So as you can see, I balance it out. Simply when there is more work, for example on major projects, it is very important to prepare; in June I will work very hard and then just July, August and then I will be free once more. You must be able to organise things.

Where do you draw inspiration?

It depends, but always at the end of the year I sum it all up - what I´ve been doing, what was it like and what I want to do in the coming year. Now I came up with the open air performances, because I have never done such a tour before. Moreover I will only visit small towns, this time leaving out the large ones, because I have been to those hundreds of times.

It sells great because people in the country where I haven´t been for twenty or thirty years, are totally lapping it up. For example we have sold 1500 tickets within one week in Kyjov.

Do you communicate with your fans, do they write to you to come to see them to some city in particular?

Well, of course, I have Facebook, I have 16 thousand fans there. Only half a year ago I had only eight thousand, but thanks to the fact that I began to communicate more and my friend Veronika Šimůnková started to take care of it, I now have double of supporters inside just a few months.

You know how it is, there is virtual communication now, internet is good that way. According to some, the internet is tiresome, devouring people´s brains, but I don't think that way. If you can schedule it and give it one or two hours maximum per day, it can be great help.

Do you have classic haters among your followers?

Not really. I always say that the way you behave to others they behave toward you. That is my credo. So I am nice, pleasant to people, anyone who wants to take a picture with me can, and I am very pleased, because it is better than if nobody would want to. At the smaller events, such as company events, balls, and similar, I spend a longer time taking pictures than singing. I sing for about an hour and I spend an hour and a half giving autographs and taking pictures with guests. It is not simple, but I enjoy it. I really take a picture with everyone to a man, because when I take a picture with ten, the next twenty is angry. It is not possible at the big concerts, you cannot make happy all of them.

Over the years, you must have made a lot of money; you have built a beautiful house. What else do you like to spend money on?

I am not that extravagant. I like to throw a bit of dosh on holidays. Me and my wife like travelling and we like to see the world a bit. I confess that I also like to spend money on wine, but for a good quality one. I love Tuscany wines. Also on cigars, but not so much nowadays. They restricted myself quite a lot. Otherwise I don´t spend that much, I rather invest. When we set off with the new musical Man with Iron Mask, I invested into that. If only due to the fact that there are other investors and partners, so that they would not feel that it is all only from their money; so with Olda Lichtenberg we also put into it our own funds, so that they know that we all share the risk. Touch wood, this musical sells very well, it is sold out until April and actually my partners wanted tickets from me, but I don´t have any.

Did that give you an incentive to prepare another musical?

There are too many! People know that my musicals are successful, so I keep getting offered some themes. Now I have about four on my desk that are worth considering. But now I have just finished one and I can't just dig into another one straight away. After all, it is work for about one year. So you need a break for at least a year or two. It is actually terribly exhaustive. From writing the music, putting people together, finding the investors and partners up to the actual practising of the roles. There is so much, it is a challenging process to create a musical.

It there something that you didn´t manage to do in your entire career?

Well didn´t manage.... I always wanted to make a living out of music. I started with jazz, that is music that I completely love, but when I started to try to live off it I had to flee because jazz will not give you a living. I am often accused by my critics of this; that I shifted from art to commerce. But I don´t regret it. I think that I have my mission. I have been entertaining people here for forty years, I have my supporters what still keep coming to my concerts, so it all probably makes some sense. It is difficult to say that I would have some regrets.

What about your grandson, Sebastian, does he also have some musical talent?

He is seven, and he is more talented for sport and also he enjoys technical things. It is in the first class of Sunny Canadian and he enjoys robotics there. He is not totally into music, even though sometimes he will sing a song. He told me that we will definitely not play the piano, that he doesn´t enjoy it, sometimes he will take a guitar and strum something out on it but without any learning whatsoever. He plays golf, tennis, basket, football.

What is it like to go back to the first class to do the homework...?

It is fine, I sometimes pick him up from school, he is glad to see that we are going to go by my car. That makes him feel proud, but otherwise the school run is done by my wife or daughter.

I have to admit that I do not study much with him. The girls do that, I prefer to play with him. I never focused on studies so I am not a good example for him.

Luxusní vila na prodej v okolí Prahy - 292m
Luxusní vila na prodej v okolí Prahy - 292m, Okolí Prahy

Michal, you are often dressed quite youthfully. Do you have a stylist?

I used to when I was working on major projects such as the Voice of Czechoslovakia, or when I was going to O2 Arena, but I have my own opinions and I don´t like much when people interfere. I am also quite often poorly evaluated by Františka Čížková, but it does not bother me. For me is important that when people come to my concert not to look at how stylishly I am dressed, but enjoy my music.

I don't do any cosmetics or plastic surgeries, I am a normal guy. Nor do I do much gym stuff, as you can see, I have a belly... But it is not a problem for me anymore, I am of a certain age, I enjoy eating, I like to drink good wines. But it is true that now I am of a box diet. My wife also We have been sticking to it for three weeks now, because I thought that I have to lose eight or ten kilos, because I have been over ninety, and that is too much. But I do not want to lose weight because of my looks, I have simply had enough. When one cannot even tie one´s shoe laces it is a kind of a warning signal.

But you mainly need energy for all those concerts.

Well, that is where I minded to be overweight you are short of breath and tire soon.

I remember that a couple of years ago you broke an ankle quite badly…

Exactly, and that is how it started. I was bedridden for a long time, doing nothing for half a year. That is how I put on all that weight but one can do nothing about that. Now it is better, I go to play tennis here and there, I give a lot of energy to concerts, it is physically as well as mentally very demanding.

I would also like to ask what you think about the current political situation?

Well, it is a madhouse. I do not think that it is absolutely ok here. What is happening between the government and Prime Minister Babiš is not good at all. Of course we will see what will happen in the end, but I think that we need to calm down the situation a bit.

Did you ever have a tendency to emigrate?

But there is something everywhere you go. Do not think that there are no problems elsewhere, too. We go abroad a lot and see their problems. There are issues in Spain, Greece, Italy, but even in Switzerland, too, my sister lives there. And what is happening in America is deplorable, so where would you like to go? It is sometimes fine to go away for a bit of sunshine and the sea. Otherwise, I do not think there is a good place where you could flee.

What would you like to achieve in your lifetime?

I think that when I have a little more time, so I would like to re-record some of my hits into English and offer them to some publishers abroad; to see whether someone famous would like to sing my song there, too. It would be fun. It is not some great dream, but it would be worthwhile to give it a try. Or would like to get some of my musicals to Broadway, but that is not realistic. It would be realistic to bring it to Korea, where we have already had at one theatre in Seoul 650 performances of the Three Musketeers and about 400 performances of Cleopatra. Now the Koreans will come to look at the Man with the Iron Mask and perhaps they will take that too, because it is a sequel to the Three Musketeers. In addition they were the stimulus to make the Iron Mask because they wanted to have a sequel. I even have some prize for the Musketeers there that I am to accept, it has been there for three years so I must go there anyway.

Thank you so much for the interview. 

Fast confession:

What car do you wish to have in your garage?

I already have a car in my garage, a car, which I longed for and that is a Cadillac.

Drahoš or Zeman?

Zeman.

What cannot you function without in the morning?

Without coffee.

Your own favourite song?

Nonstop.

Where would you refuse to sing?

I think nowhere.

What was the biggest success of your life?

Perhaps that I have been in my industry already for 40 years and I´m still successful.

Whom can you 100% rely on in Czech showbiz?

Karel Gott.

Name one star, with whom you would like to stand on one stage.

Elton John.

The best money spent?

My house.

The biggest blunder in your life?

I do not know there were more, I can certainly think of one.

The objective for 2018?

The Tour, which is called Allianz Open Air 2018.

Name at least two things which your wife naggs you most for.

That I leave the light on and forget to close the doors.

What animal best characterises your nature?

I think a dog, I am faithful.

The most favourite place in the Czech Republic?

Here at home.
The interviewee asks the Editor:

How are you?

Fantastic.
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