"Kabbalah Music" CD Concert Art Exhibit, premiers Mar 9
"Kabbalah Music" CD Release Concert & Art Exhibit
Sisters Explore Jewish Mysticism through Music and Painting
Laura Wetzler in "Kabbalah Music: Songs of the Jewish Mystics" Sunday, March 9, 3pm at The Merkin Concert Hall, 129 W.67th St., NYC. Tickets $25. Call Box Office:(212) 501-3330, Special Guests: Alicia Svigals, violin (of the Klezmatics,) Amir Chehade & Robin Burdulis, mideast percussion; Scott Wilson, kanun; Maurice Chedid, oud. Set Design and Art Exhibit by Angela Milner.
In conjunction, "Kabbalah Music: Encaustic Paintings by Angela Milner" The Merkin Concert Hall Gallery, 129 W.67th St. NYC. March 9-April 1. Post "Kabbalah Music" concert reception and art opening in gallery. Gallery hours by appointment thereafter: (212) 307-1385.
Laura Wetzler's new CD, "Kabbalah Music: Songs of the Jewish Mystics, Meditations, Devotions and Ecstasies, New and Old, From Around the World" is based on 4000 years of writings by great Jewish mystics, and features both traditional Jewish songs from communities around the world and new music by Laura Wetzler. Sung in Hebrew, Aramaic, Yiddish, Ladino (Judeo-Spanish) and English, Kabbalah Music celebrates traditional mystical imagery from the Torah, the Zohar, the Hechalot poets, Ibn Ezra, Gerondi, the "Ari," Najara, Alkabetz, Labi, Shabazi, Nachman of Bratzlav, Levi Yitzak of Berdichev, Sarah Bas Toivim, and others, set to music from Jewish communities in Uganda, Italy, India, Spain, Yemen, Iraq, Greece, Morocco, Eastern- Europe and the U.S.. The Kabbalah Music CD has turned into a critical success and surprise 'cross-over' hit, making many Top 10 world music charts and is currently receiving airplay on over 600 radio stations internationally. Available at stores and from amazon.com; cdbaby.com; jewishmusic.com, soundswrite.com, and hatikvahmusic.com.
The "Kabbalah Music" CD release concert of exciting, world-beat Jewish meditation music will have a backdrop of large 7' by 7' paintings created especially for this event by her sister, artist Angela Milner. In addition, there will be a "Kabbalah Music" art exhibit by Milner, on-site, in the Merkin Concert Hall Gallery. Laura and Angela grew up in North Babylon, Long Island, New York. Their mother, Rosalie, was a professional musician working in Jewish music. Their father, Rudi, was a businessman and survivor of Nazi Germany. This event is a unique collaboration by two sisters, a musician and a painter, who are working together in the esoteric realm of Jewish mysticism.
Laura Wetzler, ASCAP Award winning singer, composer, recording artist, and ethnic folklorist, tours internationally in over 150 concerts and lectures each year, singing original music, world Jewish roots music in Hebrew, Yiddish, and Ladino (Judeo-Spanish), and the great classics of American song. Laura began singing Jewish music professionally at the age of 15. She has composed for independent film, television, and her debut, critically-acclaimed contemporary American folk CD, Songwriter's Notebook, recent single, To Save A Life, and new Kabbalah Music CD's are heard on radio stations around the world. Laura has shared stages with such artists as Pete Seeger, Dave Mallet, Odetta, Richie Havens, The Klezmatics, and many others. Meticulous research goes into creating her 24 different concert programs, including Songwriter's Notebook, Kabbalah Music, Music of the Jews of Italy, American Hitmakers, Laura Wetzler and Janiece Thompson in Jewels of the Diaspora: A Celebration of African-American and Jewish Song, and A World of Jewish Music, among others. Laura recently returned from a concert and song-sharing visit with Jewish communities in Mbale, Uganda and Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
- "Top 10 World Music Charts" Toronto Radio
- "Top 10 World Music Charts" WSIA, NYC
- "Laura is one of the very best" Pete Seeger
- "Captivating with Kabbalah" The Jewish Ledger
- "A fascinating new album ... vastly impressive ... superb performances ... a major achievement." Robert Sherman, of The New York Times, WFUV
- "... pure vocal ecstasy!" Jewish Entertainment Resources
- "An amazingly gifted, singer, songwriter and ethnic folklorist." David Amram
- "'Kabbalah Music' is one of the best albums of new Jewish music in the past decade and establishes Wetzler in the forefront of the rich, exciting renaissance of contemporary Jewish music. Laura does a terrific job of presenting a focused, coherent overview of Jewish music's span and scope ... a masterful work of folklore and scholarship, as well as a beautifully performed work of original, traditional-based music" Seth Rogovoy, Author, The Essential Klezmer, WAMC Public Radio
- "What glorious singing!�exciting, up-beat, joyous," Workman's Circle, NYC
Angela Milner's latest art work is inspired by the teachings of the Jewish mysticism, introduced to her by her sister, Laura, who asked Milner to design the Kabbalah Music CD cover. For the Kabbalah Music set design and art exhibit, Milner explores several aspects of philosophical kabbalah through colorful, expressive works, referencing Jewish mystical concepts such as the sephirot, (or Tree of 10 Divine emanations), tzeruf, (Hebrew letter meditations), shemoth and shiviti (various Hebrew names for G-d placed as Jewish meditation and prayer focus points). Working from her Brooklyn studio in D.U.M.B.O., Milner uses the ancient process of encaustic painting as her medium, created by combining beeswax, color pigment and varnish. The rich waxy surfaces achieved with encaustic painting creates a wonderful rendezvous between process and thought, well suited to this mystical theme.
- "visually exciting.... the inventiveness, spontaneity and movement of Abstract Expressionism is retained, but added objects expand meaning." Phyllis Braff, The New York Times
- "fragments of perception make up a composite of organic and mechanistic elements, commenting on the dual and sometimes conflicting aspects of modern life." Helen A. Harrison, The New York Times
- "...creates a sense of the romantic and poetic and engages the viewer in new ways of reflecting on the world." Elizabeth Wix, Newsday
- "Angela Milner manipulates paint in a misty, poetic manner to create abstract canvases infused with a 'Turneresque' sense of light and rugged textures." Martin Parsons, Artspeak