YIVO digitizing Ruth Rubin collection
Catching up on Jewish-Music list discussions, I note this exchange regarding the Ruth Rubin collection. Huzzah!
From Jane Peppler
The librarian I contacted about the Ruth Rubin tapes in their collection told me YIVO is digitizing them. Is that true?
Response from Lorin Sklamberg
We have indeed begun the work of digitizing Ruth Rubin's collection of field recordings. A large portion of the materials were transferred and databased by Bay Area singer/instrumentalist Jeanette Lewicki over the summer with the support of New York's Center for Traditional Music and Dance. Though far from completed, the tracks that have been processed are currently being prepared for on-site use in the not-too-distant future by YIVO Sound Archives consultant Matt Temkin.
Renewed interest in these treasures can be partially attributed to the posthumous publication of Yiddish Folksongs from the Ruth Rubin Archives edited by Chana Mlotek and Mark Slobin (Wayne University Press, 2007). Recent projects that utilize the songs include my own Saints and Tzadiks (songs from the Irish and Yiddish traditions developed together with Susan McKeown), Voices of Ashkenaz (German-Jewish song connections explored by Andreas Schmitges, Deborah Strauss, Svetlana Kundish and Thomas Fritze) and Alpen Klezmer (Bavarian and Yiddish songs with Andrea Pancur & Ilya Shneyveys). I should also mention here the continued cultural activism and encouragement of Pete Rushefsky, Itzik Gottesman, Ethel Raim and Sandy Wolofsky, without whom we wouldn't have gotten this work started.
Please contact me directly if you are interested in these or other Sound Archives holdings.
Mr. Lorin Sklamberg, Sound Archivist
The Max and Frieda Weinstein Archives of YIVO Sound Recordings
YIVO Institute for Jewish Research
15 West 16th Street
New York, NY 10011
(212) 294-6169 phone
(917) 606-8289 fax