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2010-04-02 digital edition
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The Jewish Press of Tampa and the Jewish Press of Pinellas County are Independently- owned biweekly Jewish community newspapers published in cooperation with and supported by the Tampa JCC & Federation and the Jewish Federation of Pinellas & Pasco Counties, respectively. Copyright © 2009-2019 The Jewish Press Group of Tampa Bay, Inc., All Rights Reserved. 


April 2, 2010  RSS feed
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Klezmer musician to weave song, stories at Yom HaShoah program

Violinist and klezmer historian, Yale Strom Violinist and klezmer historian, Yale Strom The Tampa Jewish community will commemorate Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day, on Sunday, April 11, with stories, song and prayer in memory of the millions who were lost.

The Tampa Rabbinical Association will sponsor the communitywide commemoration at 7 p.m. at Congregation Schaarai Zedek, 3303 W. Swann Ave. The program is free and open to all.

The evening will feature songs and stories presented by Yale Strom, a pre-eminent klezmer musician and scholar, along with a service and the lighting of memorial candles by local Holocaust survivors. On display will be a special photo exhibit with works by Tampa resident, Dr. Roberto Medina.

As the guest speaker, Strom, will highlight klezmer’s rich history, how the Holocaust brought about the musical genre’s demise and its revival since.

The multi-talented Strom is a violinist, composer, filmmaker, author, photographer, playwright and klezmer scholar.

He is a pioneer among klezmer revivalists in conducting field research on the Central and East European roots of the musical genre, particularly among the Jewish and Rom (Gypsy) communities. Initially, Strom’s work focused on the use and performance of klezmer music among these two groups. Gradually, the research expanded to examining all aspects of their culture, from post- World War II to the present.

Now after more than two decades and with 75 research expeditions under his belt, Strom has become known as the world’s leading ethnographerartist of klezmer music and history.

In San Diego where he serves as artist-in-resident for the local university’s Jewish Studies program, the San Diego Jewish Journal described him as “a Yiddish Indiana Jones. Strom continues to dig up artifacts of Jewish music, introducing audiences to something they might have missed.”

Along with making Strom an authority on klezmer music, the research was instrumental in helping form the repertoires of his two Klezmer bands and influenced his composition of new Jewish music, which he describes as combining klezmer and Hasidic nigunim, Rom, jazz, classical, Balkan and Sephardic motifs.

He also has written a symphony as well as scores for stage, film, television and radio and recorded 13 CDs.

Strom is the author of four books on klezmer music and Jewish culture of Eastern Europe as well as a children’s book The Wedding That Saved A Town (2008), based upon his research in Poland where he heard this story about klezmer musicians playing at a wedding held in a cemetery during a cholera epidemic.

In a 2008 profile in Hadassah magazine, Strom eludes to the connection of Yiddish culture, the Holocaust and the revival of klezmer music.

“Jews after the Holocaust say their grandparents speak Yiddish, but they don’t know much. For many Jews who are estranged, Yiddish culture is…a way for them to get in touch with their Jewishness,” he said, “Klezmer celebrates Yiddish culture. We don’t want to only remember the sadness….”

For more information about the Tampa Yom HaShoah program, call (813) 876-2377.

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