Ivan Wilzig, aka recording artist Sir Ivan, aka Peaceman of The Peaceman Foundation, a private nonprofit supporting an array of charities dedicated to fighting hate crimes and treating the victims of post-traumatic stress disorder.
Sir Ivan, the stage name of this remarkable man, is the eldest son of the late multi-billionaire Siggy B. Wilzig, the only Auschwitz survivor in history to take over two publicly traded firms, an oil company on the NYSE and a bank on NASDAQ, while never forswearing his wide-ranging philanthropic interests.
Having earned a prestigious law degree and for 20 years having sat on the board of his father’s bank, Sir Ivan turned his back on his illustrious career and started a new career in music, which was his real love.
We were lucky enough, to not only be able to ask Sir Ivan the following Questions, but also to photograph his spectacular 15,000 square foot castle in the Hamptons.
SC: Please can you explain in a few lines, who “Sir” Ivan Wilzig is.
Sir Ivan: “Sir Ivan” is my professional name. Once I built a medieval castle in the Hamptons my father started to call me “Sir” Ivan as a joke. I thought it made a cool stage name so I adopted it. Wilzig is my family name. I never call myself Sir Ivan Wilzig. However, sometimes the press does, even though I don’t like it. I only go by Sir Ivan or Ivan Wilzig NEVER Sir Ivan Wilzig. I don’t want anyone to think I am pretending to be royalty or something that I’m not.
SC: Can you tell us about Peaceman?
Sir Ivan: After I decided to sing songs from the 60s because they helped put an end to the war in Vietnam, I decided my look should reflect my artistic endeavors. If I am going to sing about peace in my lyrics, then I want to look like a a messenger of peace. The peace-sign capes made people start calling me Peaceman because I looked like a superhero. I kept the “Peaceman” nickname because I thought kids should have a real-life superhero to look up to instead of an imaginary one like Superman, Batman or Spiderman. I thought both boys and girls would be better off playing with a Peaceman action figure instead of a G.I. Joe doll that comes with a machine gun, a machete and a hand grenade. Kids should learn that there are non violent ways to resolve problems and that it is cooler to educate people than kill them.
SC: What gave you the inspiration to design your castle?
Sir Ivan: I like having things that are rare. The Castle is like a huge art sculpture. It is a one-of-a-kind home and that’s what make it special. Also, I am a movie fanatic and many of the old action films center around the Castle. Whoever owns the castle rules the land.
SC: With all the craziness that must go on in your life on a day to day basis, what keeps you grounded?
Sir Ivan: My parents brought me up to appreciate everything in life. Because they stayed down to earth despite my father’s meteoric rise in the business world, I never become a snob because I followed their example. I chose friends by who they were, not by what they owned.
SC: What is your most treasured possession?
Sir Ivan: My teacup chihuahua, Chiquita.
SC: What do you think of your reputation as the” King of Parties”?
Sir Ivan: I like being the “King of Parties” or as I refer to myself “The Party King of the World” because I get to host and entertain and put smiles on other people’s faces. I give my energy to my guests as a gift. That’s why my parties are not simply parties but, rather other-worldly experiences.
SC: Do you ever stop to rest?
Sir Ivan: There is little time to rest. A superhero’s job is a difficult one.
SC: Is there anything you would like to have in your life that you don’t already?
Sir Ivan: Yes. While I have family, friends and girlfriends that love me and vice versa, I would love to fall madly in love once more.
SC: How do you see your life in 10 and 20 years?
Sir Ivan: As a famous entertainer, author and revolutionary philosopher.
SC: What would you like your legacy to be?
Sir Ivan: I would like to establish an institution to battle Hate Crime and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. The institution’s goal would of course be to create Peace on Earth. That is why I established The Peaceman Foundation to raise money for the building of The Peaceman Institute.
SC: Thank you Sir Ivan for your incredible hospitality and allowing our readers a chance to look into your extraordinary home!