Delilah Net Worth

Biography of Dalida

Dalida is a legendary French chanson singer. Her records sold millions of copies around the world. Twelve countries placed her singles Gigi I’Amoroso (1974) and ll venait d’avoir 18 ans (1981) in first place in sales. The first owner of a diamond disc. Among her many awards are Brazilian, Italian, German and, of course, French: the medal of the President of France and the medal of the city of Paris, which were presented to her by Charles de Gaulle. Dalida was awarded the Golden Europa award as the most popular singer of 1981. In May 1987, she committed suicide, leaving a note “Life has become unbearable for me. Forgive me”.

Childhood and youth: Cairo – Paris

Yolanda Cristina Gigliotti (this is the real name of Dalida) was born in the winter of 1933 in the capital of Egypt, in the family of Italian emigrants Pietro and Filomena Giuseppina Gigliotti. In addition to her, her older brother Orlando and younger Bruno were brought up in the family. Mom was a dressmaker, father earned money by playing the violin.

Delilah as a child

The very birth of a girl was a test for her: the birth was very difficult, the future world star was born with skin of a dead blue hue. A priest was immediately called to her so that the newborn would not die unbaptized. But Yolanda survived.

At 10 months – a new test. The baby almost died from an infectious disease that affected the eyes. But Yolanda survived again. She had to wear a black bandage over her eyes while her father sang lullabies to her and said that her eyes reminded him of the beautiful Queen Nefertiti.

Dalida’s parents

Later, she underwent three vision surgeries – at one and a half, at four, and before leaving for Paris. An illiterate doctor prescribed the wrong treatment, as a result of which she developed strabismus and developed severe migraines. For a long time, Iolanthe could only sleep with the lights on, and after the second operation, she began to wear huge ugly glasses.

Dalida in childhood and adolescence

She inherited her appearance and musical abilities from her father, the first violin of the Cairo Opera. At the beginning of World War II, he was taken into custody along with other Italians living in Cairo: Egypt was under the influence of Britain, a member of the Anti-Hitler coalition, and Italy fought on the side of the Nazis and invaded Egypt in September 1940. When Iolanthe turned 11, he returned: sick, half-dead, until the end of his days he shuddered at sharp sounds. His attitude towards loved ones has changed. The girl did not understand why her beloved dad began to beat his little Nefertiti. She still remembered the warmth of his hands, his father’s gentle embrace.

The little girl wanted to do something to get her dad back to her. She performed in theatrical productions, where her parents were invited, studied diligently at a Catholic school, but everything was in vain. In 1945, shortly after her release, her father died due to a brain abscess. He was only 41 years old. Until the end of her life, Iolanthe lived with the complex of an unloved daughter.

Not everything went smoothly at school. Because of the thick lenses, she was constantly teased by classmates, and one day, when she was thirteen years old, she simply threw her glasses off the balcony. This symbolic gesture seemed to become a pass to a new life. Everyone suddenly noticed that a tall and awkward teenager with legs of size forty-two actually has an attractive appearance.

At the age of 16, Yolanda got a job as a secretary in a pharmaceutical company and began to participate in beauty contests. To prove – no, not to her father, but to herself – that she deserves the best, at the age of 19, Iolanta became a participant in the Miss Egypt contest and won. Her photo shoot in a fashion magazine became the subject of condemnation of puritanical relatives and friends. The engagement with the groom had to be broken: he could not marry the “shameless”.

Yolanda Gigliotti at the Miss Egypt 1954 pageant

The girl realized that she was no longer connected with this environment, got a job as a model at the Donna agency, and underwent another vision correction operation. The winner of the competition was invited to star in Egyptian cinema. Iolanthe took the pseudonym Delilah – after the name of the parable “Samson and Delilah”, changing only one letter. She starred in Marco de Gastin’s The Mask of Tutankhamun, and then appeared in Niaz Mostafa’s dramatic musical Glass and Cigarette. This picture inspired the girl to write the song “Momentary Desire”. When filming was completed, Dalida moved to Paris. It was 1954.

Dalida in her youth

creative way

A new life for the future star began with an acquaintance with a novice and little-known actor Alain Delon. They lived close to each other on Rue Jean-Mermoz and became great friends. Much later, they would create a duet together for the famous song “Paroles, Paroles”.

Dalida and Alain Delon – Paroles, Paroles

Iolanthe began to take singing lessons from Professor Roland Berger, who was distinguished by a tough character and draconian teaching methods. But when he saw and heard “a pretty girl who can make good money on stage,” as Dalida was recommended to him, he was amazed. He immediately recommended that she go to all kinds of auditions, and the girl received her first engagement at the Villa d’Este club.

In 1955 Dalida moved to Paris

In 1956 Dalida’s first song “Bambino” was recorded. The success was overwhelming. The composition entered the top ten of the charts in France, it was listened to in foreign countries. The further professional path of the singer was truly stellar. Dalida’s favorite saying in those days: “I am married to my audience, my songs are my children.” Photos of the artist adorned almost the entire gloss of Paris, and then foreign magazines. She toured all over the world, and after touring the US, Ella Fitzgerald’s producer invited her to stay.

Dalida in 1958

But Dalida continued to ascend her own creative Olympus. Among the songs performed by her, admirers of the singer’s talent will forever remember “La danse de Zorba”, “Parlez moi de lui”, “Ciao amore, ciao”, “Salma ya Salama”, “Nostalgie” and others.

Dalida acted in films. The most famous were the films with her participation “I love you” (1968, the main role), “Like clockwork” (1977, cameo in the episode), the drama “The Sixth Day” (1986).

Filming “I Love You”

For the role in the latter (a laundress from Cairo, containing a paralyzed husband and grandson), Dalida left Paris, leaving all her clothes and jewelry, hid her luxurious hair under a turban, cut her elegant manicure to the root and appeared before the audience as 43-year-old Yolanda. The singer herself admitted that because of her success, she forgot this part of her personality – Dalida overshadowed Yolanda, but the shooting in The Sixth Day helped to remember the real “I”.

Dalida in the movie The Sixth Day

Dalida’s personal life

The only official husband of the star was businessman Lucien Moriss. Before the official marriage in 1961, they met for five years, but family life did not work out. She dreamed of children, and he, her manager, thought only about her tour schedule.

Dalida and Lucien Morris

On tour in Cannes, Dalida became interested in the Polish artist and actor Jean Sobieski. Upon learning of the betrayal, Lucien filed for divorce, and since the couple had no children, they divorced them quickly. More officially, the singer did not get married.

Dalida and Jean Sobieski

Her younger brother Bruno began to deal with her affairs, taking a pseudonym for himself by the name of his older brother – Orlando. Dalida bought a house in Montmartre and began furnishing it. On tour in Italy, she met the idol of youth Luigi Tenko, with whom she was going to work together. But the business relationship soon developed into a personal one. Nevertheless (or perhaps precisely because of this), they worked hard and fruitfully.

Dalida and Luigi Tenco

The singer invited Luigi to perform together at the Sanremo festival. The young talent already saw himself as a winning hero, but their song was not even allowed into the final. The blow to pride was too strong, Tenko shot himself that evening in his room.

Dalida – Ciao amore ciao (Sanremo 1967)

Upon discovering the lifeless body of her beloved, Dalida experienced a nervous shock. After a month of seclusion, the singer almost killed herself, but the maid found her in time. Recovery after the suicide attempt was painful and incomplete: she was haunted by memory lapses and bouts of deafness.

The last love of the singer was the artist Richard Chamfrey, an adventurer who called himself Comte Saint-Germain. They were happy together for nine years, after which they broke up for unknown reasons.

Dalida and Richard Chamfrey

When Dalida learned that her lover had hanged himself in his own home in the summer of 1983, she seemed to die with him. And in 1986, the singer was completely knocked down by the news of the death of close friends – Pietro and Lucia. The fragile psyche of the artist could not stand it, she plunged into depression.

Death and memory

On May 2, 1987, Dalida put on a luxurious peignoir, put on meticulous makeup, left the lights on so that no one would suspect anything, and drank a lethal dose of sleeping pills and washed down with a glass of whiskey. She, lying on her bed with a majestic expression, was discovered only in the morning.

Delilah May 2, 1987

The singer was buried at the Montmartre cemetery on May 7. Farewell to her became an event of national scale: indeed, the whole of Paris sought to pay tribute to the memory of the great Dalida.

Dalida’s grave

She became the fourth woman with a monument in the French capital. Before her, Jeanne d’Arc, Sarah Bernhardt and Edith Piaf were honored with this honor. The singer’s face is depicted on a postage stamp and personalized wine – another symbol of France. Several films were made about the life and work of Dalida, including the feature film “Dalida. Love and Passion”, released in 2016. The main role was played by Sveva Alviti.

Sveva Alviti as Dalida