The Whitechapel Whirlwind
The Whitechapel Whirlwind is a multimedia opera (in-progress) on the subject of the life and career of world junior welterweight and British lightweight boxing champion, Jack 'Kid' Berg (1909-1991), whose professional career spanned over twenty years.
'Kid' Berg's career as a fighter allowed him to gain recognition as a celebrity figure during the prohibition era of the 1920s and 30s, who was loved by his fans and who enjoyed the benefits and perils of associations (and occasional run-ins) with such famous and infamous figures as Mae West and Jack "Legs" Diamond.
As one of the best known and best loved Jewish fighters of his time, 'Kid' Berg, along with his older counterpart, Ted 'Kid' Lewis, became heroic figures within the British as well as American Jewish communities, serving in many respects, as examples of great men who managed to transcend their their poverty-stricken immigrant-community ghetto upbringings to emerge as success stories.
Similarly, such fighters as the Cuban-American fighter, 'Kid' Chocolate and the Italian-American fighter, Tony Canzoneri, served as shining representatives of their respective communities.
What is it that made these men great? Why did so many men from these communities end up becoming professional boxers? Why does boxing remain an important sport in our present times? What can we all learn from the stuggles of these great boxing champions?
Conversely in our present 'age of celebrity,' what can we also learn about the desire for celebrity at all costs?
Scores & Recordings
Watch a Video of Howard Fredrics' Interview on Jack "Kid" Berg
In Elliot Tucker's Documentary FIlm, Ghetto Warriors