Molly Bergman has been taking lessons from a very young age. The Las Vegas native took up the piano at age 5—she soon extended to guitar after catching a Miley Cyrus/Hannah Montana concert at MGM Grand—and she was only 3 when she took her first tennis lesson, with renowned Las Vegas coach Marty Hennessy at Turnberry Place.
“As I got older, I started hanging out with the kids from Marty’s foundation program,” says Bergman, now 14. “We went to the Davis Cup in San Diego to support the USA team. I tried to emulate Kimberly Yee’s killer backhand; at that time she was the No. 1 player in her age division in the country.”
Bergman, the daughter of legendary comedian and longtime Vegas headliner Rita Rudner, says her musical and athletic endeavors continue to collide. “Every summer my parents help host a leadership retreat for the [Marty Hennessy Junior Tennis Foundation], and somehow we always end up singing songs around a fire pit or on the beach with me on guitar. The foundation was the first group I shared my original songs with, and its encouragement really inspired me.”
The result of that inspiration is California Girl, Bergman’s first EP, proceeds from which she’s donating to Hennessy’s children’s tennis foundation. The music is available on iTunes, Apple Music, Spotify and more.
“I was very nervous ... recording anything at 14 seems presumptuous,” she says. “However, the opportunity to do something for the foundation convinced me to go into the studio. ... I’ve had a blessed childhood, but some of the foundation’s kids have had bumpier rides. I’m really pleased that my album is a way people can choose to help support it.”