Trees are chopped down in the woods. Stars fall and are extinguished. And hard is the path through the sand; But how good we feel when we're together.
Performance by Zelig Schnadover, commentary by Itzik Gottesman. Now at CTMD's Yiddish Song of the Week! yiddishsong.wordpress.com/2017/03/22/beymer-hakt-men-fun-veldl-aroys-performed-by-zelig-schnadover/
The Yiddish Song of the Week is a project of the Center for Traditional Music and Dance's An-sky Institute for Jewish Culture.
Registration and Scholarship Applications now open
KlezKanada's Laurentian Retreat - Monday, August 21 - Sunday, August 27, 2017.
Register Now for KlezKanada 2017
"Girls in Trouble" is a cycle of indie-folk/art-pop songs about women in Torah created by musician and writer Alicia Jo Rabins. This two-minute trailer is a great introduction to the project including live footage, Alicia's personal story about how she started writing songs about Biblical women, and an introduction to the Girls in Trouble study guides!
With a modern revival 100 years after Pepi Littman donned Hasidic garb, the irreverent, nearly forgotten performer is even more relevant
The KlezmerShack is embarrassed to be a month behind the times, but we'd rather be late than not acknowledge this neat new Frank London project
Yiddish Opera to premiere in Havana, by Miranda Cooper
'Hatuey: Memory of Fire,' written by composer Frank London of the Klezmatics, tells the story of a Ukrainian refugee who falls in love with a revolutionary Taíno singer
El próximo viernes 3 de marzo, la compañía Ópera de la Calle estrenará Hatuey, obra que—además de haber captado la atención de los medios internacionales—promete un espectáculo singular en dos tiempos: el siglo XVI cubano y la vida social de los años treinta.
Basada en el poema épico del ucraniano Oscar Pinis: Hatuey, memorias de fuego, y adaptada al teatro musical por la dramaturga Elise Thoron y el compositor Sir. Frank London, la ópera mezcla ritmos judíos y afrocubanos en compases irregulares, muy diferentes a los acostumbrados en el género.
From Andrea Pancur on Facebook:
Are you 26 or younger? Were you born after August 10, 1990? Do play an instrument? If so, come join the young Israeli Jewish and Arab musicians on an exciting journey of discovery... Haven't you always wanted to go to Haifa? Do you have some free time between the July 23 and August 10 to travel, rehearse and meet new people? Then apply for the Yiddish Summer CARAVAN ORCHESTRA Project until March 31: yiddishsummer.eu/special/caravan.html
More on Facebook: www.facebook.com/groups/346286172119179/
Posted by Andrea Pancur on Facebook:
The Foward says so, and the whole Yiddish Summer Team is delighted: The most important festival for Jewish music is Yiddish Summer Weimar. If you, too, want to indulge into the sublime festival atmosphere for a week or even a whole month (July 15 - Aug 12) you can register right away for one or more workshops about song, instrumental music, badkhones, hasidic music, middle eastern music, yiddish language, story-telling, dance and dance orchestra.
Do so until March 31 and benefit from the Early Bird discount. Here's the link to the registration: yiddishsummer.eu/main/workshops/registration.html
NEW Yiddish CD!
From Holocaust to Life = Fun khurbn tsum lebn
Internationally acclaimed singers Lisa Willson, John Packard and Ian DeNolfo join forces in this exquisite collection of 15 Yiddish Art Songs, with 2 bonus songs performed by world-renowned tenor Louis Danto. All the music is by Montreal-based composer David Botwinik (born 1920, Vilna), with lyrics by various poets.
"For me a ship, for you a canoe..." performance of a short Yiddish song by Zelig Schnadover. Commentary by Itzik Gottesman. Now on CTMD's Yiddish Song of the Week.
The program is announced. Get ready.
"Every summer, people of all ages from near and far come to Weimar to experience our inspiring program of workshops, concerts, dances, jam sessions and much, much more. You can come for a brief visit to hear a concert, join a jam session, dance or mini-workshop, or stay for as long as a month and immerse yourself in our unique, interdisciplinary program."
"Yiddish culture is world culture. It has many deep and surprising connections to other cultures of Europe, the Middle East, North and South America and beyond. Each year, we explore some of these connections. In 2017, our special topic is "The Other Israel: Seeing Unseen Diasporas." Israel today is home to a kaleidoscope of cultures from around the world. Yiddish culture is only one of these, alongside Iraqi, Moroccan, Ethiopian, Russian, and many others. This year, we will be introduced to this amazing and complex intercultural matrix, guided by some of the renowned artists and teachers who live inside it."
North American Jewish Choir Festival
July 16–20, 2017
Hudson Valley Resort and Spa,
400 Granite Road
Kerhonkson NY 12446
* Instant Choirs for All Singers
* Daily Community Sings
* Workshops Galore
* Outstanding Performers
This Summer Also Features a
SPECIAL TRACK FOR
SYNAGOGUE CHORAL SINGERS
* Learn Contemporary and Traditional Synagogue Classics
* Improve Your Skills
* Bring New Inspiration to Next Year's Holidays
Bay area folks may enjoy this article about Jeanette Lewicki and tonight's performance, "Comedienne in a Hasid's Pants: Pepi Litman."
Local singer brings to life cross-dressing Yiddish vaudevillian, Hannah Rubin, Jan 12, 2017, J Weekly
epi Litman may have been born in the 1800s, but from reading the details of her life, you wouldn't know it. A cross-dressing performer with undeniable Yiddish swagger, Litman toured Eastern Europe with her vaudeville theater troupe, singing songs about politics, archaic religious traditions and the death of bureaucracy.… [more]
This was posted last month, but it's a great story involving Michael Aylward and Joel Rubin. Enjoy!
Recently, after almost a decade of sleuthing, a rogue British hobbyist and one of the greatest living klezmer musicians uncovered a lost trove of vinyl records from the earliest days of the Jewish music industry. This week, we follow in their footsteps and revise musical history. We talk to the discoverers of klezmer's "lost vault", Michael Aylward and Joel Rubin, and we take a look at how the American working class fell out of love with opera. Plus, we indulge in some happy memories of holiday music.
I try to find ways to explain what little I understand about Mark Rubin's music, but most tend to distract. He's been the linchpin of several Klezmer ensembles—that's how I first encountered him. But, he's also been the linchpin of a host of Americana bands, from Texas polka to bluegrass. He plays honest music astonishingly well, and he takes no bullshit from fellow musicians, so the whole damn thing tends to sound astonishingly well. An Ashkenaz performance where he played bass with Andy Statman (the always excellent Larry Eagle was on drums) remains one of my peak Andy Statman performances (and for that matter, a peak Ashkenaz concert). His first solo recording, "Southern Discomfort" featured his uncomfortable take on Leo Frank and other misfortunes, as well as some very fine picking. His appearance at the most recent Ashkenaz was wonderful, although I got a sense that people were looking for something a bit more … safe. By "safe," of course, I don't mean that this is avant garde music, but that it comes with the sort of chip on your shoulder you get when you are used to being the only Jew in a crowd of mostly non-Jewish folks full of their own tribal identities. I'd compare him to Kinky Friedman, but other than being Jewish and being associated with Texas, I'm not sure there is much else in common—although it is easy to compare "The Murder of Leo Frank" with "Ride 'em Jewboy" and "They don't make Jews like Jesus anymore."
Too many words. There is a new Mark Rubin recording coming. You can help make it happen:
This came from a post by a friend on The WELL. Sounds fascinating:
Koukias brings opera "Before the Flame Goes Out" to Hobart, by Matthew Westwood, The Australian, January 14, 2017
"… [H]is new multimedia concert piece, Before the Flame Goes Out, will be performed at Hobart Town Hall this month and Koukias is thrilled that it will have its premiere in his home town. [Th]e piece is about a region of northwestern Greece that was the land of his forebears: a place of hard light and mountainous beauty, of religious and cultural diversity, and with a terrible episode in its history. Ioannina was home to the Romaniote community of Hellenic Jews: people with their own religious customs and a distinctive Greek-Hebrew dialect. They are said to have lived and worshipped in Ioannina since the 9th century, possibly earlier, and endured under a long sequence of Byzantine, Norman and Ottoman rulers, and then the Greek kingdom.…
This one was captured by Margot Leverett, leader of the Klezmer Mountain Boys. Not sure the headline writer knows the difference between "blues" and "bluegrass", so think of this as a paean to Jewish "Americana" music. But, don't let the headline put you off—good article:
The Unexpected Smash Success of Jewish Bluegrass Music, by Gabe Friedman, January 12, 2017, The Forward
Saul Kaye never wanted to be a "Jewish blues" player. In his opinion, the Jewish music he had heard growing up in Northern California's Bay Area ranged from "really bad to horrible." In 2009, he was touring as a rock musician, playing hundreds of shows a year with various bands at bars and clubs. And though he had never been very religious, he experienced a bad breakup and felt the need to do something spiritually "radical." …[more]
From Joel Rubin:
"Here's a podcast of the Dec. 13 broadcast of "With Good Reason" radio, which interviewed me in the first segment on the anthology Chekhov's Band: Eastern European Klezmer Music 1908-1913, and the recent CD with Veretski Pass, Poyln: A Gilgul:
"Heavy Shtetl" is the second installment in ePRHYME'S series of Rap/Duets, which pair his densely packed poetic rhymes with a solo master instrumentalist.
***Warning from ePRHYME: Acquired taste! Not for everyone.
Just caught a post on Facebook by Hankus Netsky with the sad news: Ben Zion Shenker, the composer of hundreds of melodies, including 'Eishes Chayil' and 'Mizmor L'Dovid,' passed away Sunday morning.
From Fishel Bresler:
I had the incredible privilege and honor of getting to know Reb Ben Zion a bit through davenen with him at Modzitz in Brooklyn over the years. A real gentleman, and a pleasure to talk to (and laugh with) about music. The last time I spoke with him and heard him lead the service was just a month ago, at Shmini Atzeres/Simchas Torah. His voice was still beautiful, sweet and clear. The way he lived exemplified a life of modest, sincere avodah.
May he enjoy a lictign Gan Eden!
A video of Ben Zion Shenker singing "Yedid Nefesh" (posted to Jewish-Music by Moussa Berlin)
We are excited to open registration for Yiddish New York (YNY) and to announce this year's programs and faculty. YNY is a 6-day workshop/festival that will run from Thursday, December 24 - Tuesday, December 29, 2016.
YNY's daytime programs at the 14th Street Y and adjacent Town and Village Synagogue include workshops in klezmer music, Yiddish song, language and theater, as well as lectures, panel discussions, films, walking tours and more, all led by a faculty of the Yiddish world's leading contemporary artists and scholars. YNY evenings will be filled with concerts, dance parties, a visual arts exhibition and jam sessions at venues around Manhattan's Lower East Side & East Village, neighborhoods steeped in Yiddish cultural history. We have great programs for kids and teens, and family members of all ages!
More info: www.yiddishnewyork.com
The 5th International Jewish Music Festival competition 2017 will be held from May 4-8th, 2017 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. It is a double celebration year as this will mark the 20th International Jewish Music Festival is held in Amsterdam. Preliminary rounds and semi-finals of the Music Competition will be held in the redesigned Uilenburger Synagoge with the Grand Finale taking place on May 8th at the spectacular DeLaMar theater holding a 1000 audience.
More info, registration, at ijmf.wordpress.com
This announcement is over a year old, but I have no record of having shared it. About time! From Pete Rushefsky, Executive Director of the CTMD.
Center for Traditional Music and Dance is pleased to make available footage from a landmark November 1978 concert by the Dave Tarras Trio which also featured a youthful Andy Statman & Zev Feldman in their public debut, plus Yiddish singers Feigl Yudin and Ethel Raim. We're grateful for the work of Clara Byom (U. New Mexico) making this material available...
I am late to post this
The European Cantors association is happy to announce that booking is open for the 11th European Cantors Convention taking place in Prague from Thursday 17 to Sunday 20 November 2016.
Guest lecturers will be Cantor Naftali Herstik and maestro Raymond Goldstein as well as a choir from the Tel Aviv Academy of Cantorial studies
All those interested in Jewish prayer music based on the orthodox tradition are welcome to attend. As well as lectures and masterclasses there will be a gala concert on one of the most beautiful synagogues in Prague and a tour of Jewish Prague. And best of all cantos and choir will illuminate two beautiful Prague synagogues with memorable music and prayer over Shabbat.
More details, a flyer that you can download and print off and the registration form can be found on the website www.cantors.eu.
I'm not sure if this is new, or simply new to me—the KlezmerShack has been mightily distracted for a while. In all events, it's a great site:
Klezmer Academy, curated by clarinetist Sherry Mayrent, has klezmer tunes, discussions of klezmer theory, practical lessons on style, musings on current and past trends in the music and its performance, and other topics on all aspects of klezmer and its history.
Two last reviews before I hit the road to Toronto and the Ashkenaz Festival. It's been 20 years of New Jewish Music, and I'm excited—but not so excited that I want to forget to tell you about these:
I have no idea why I haven't reviewed this release yet. It is exactly the kind of music I look forward to, created by three of my favorite young-ish musicians--KlezKanada and KlezKamp alumni, hurrah!, making music for their generation, and celebrating hundreds of years of Yiddish culture: Yiddish Art Trio, 2014.
And, in the same vein, drawing on veterans from the former USSR, from the UK and USA, we have the holy musical trinity of: Sklamberg & the Shepherds / Aheym, 2015. Just beautiful
It's a Yiddish-lover's world. Enjoy. As for me, I'm off to my own aheym at Ashkenaz!
This week's "Yiddish Song of the Week" features the original (two originals, in fact) of a song that was remixed as part of the WAKS recording that I reviewed this week.
"Ver es vil kayn tate-mame folgn" Performed by Lifshe Schaechter-Widman, recorded in 1954
From Simon of Hatikva Music
The Barry Sisters performing live...Amazing!!! "Nu, Zug Mir Schoin Ven" (Live! With lyrics)
Does anyone have the translation to this song????
Just heard about this new release in the UK:
My respondent notes that there is a lot of variation in levels between the cuts--it sounds more like a paste-together compilation than something someone tried to make work together. But, minor cavils—the material is now available outside of collectors' shops.
The compilation appears to be released by Jasmine Records