TUESDAY, AUGUST 13 2019

2:00 pm

Northbrook Public Library
1201 Cedar Lane, Northbrook

MUSIC

 

Stewart Figa

"Di Gantse Velt! ;
Treasures of Yiddish Song"  

with Ilya Levinson, piano

Don Stille, accordion

 

Stewart Figa has served as cantor at West Suburban Temple Har Zion in River Forest, Illinois, since 1998 and has been a cantor in the Chicago area since 1990. An established and in-demand performer of Yiddish and Jewish music, his programs for the annual Chicago YIVO Society Summer Festival have been cheered by capacity audiences. 

In 2015, Mr. Figa received a Grammy nomination for his work as a vocalist with the New Budapest Orpheum Society on their CD “As Dreams Fall Apart,” and in June of 2016 he appeared with the ensemble on a successful four- city tour in England. 

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 7 2019

2:00 pm

Highland Park Public Library

494 Laurel Ave, Highland Park

MUSIC

Steve Gibons 

"Vanishing Worlds: Music in the Diaspora"

In the Vanishing Worlds Project we look at intersections in the cultural trajectories of Jews, Muslims and Roma peoples in North Africa, Spain, and Eastern Europe, through the lens of 21st century musicians who perform these apparently disparate genres.

This event is free and open to the public

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 21

7:00 pm

Morton Grove Public Library

6140 Lincoln Ave, Morton Grove

LECTURE

ANETTE ISAACS

"Silent Heroes — An Important Look at the Resistance Movement in Nazi Germany"

 

This year’s 80th anniversary of Adolf Hitler’s decision to start World War II presents us with the perfect opportunity to look at the relatively unknown and sometimes even forgotten heroes who often gave their lives in order to fight against the German dictator’s brutal Nazi regime. Join German Historian Anette Isaacs, M.A. as she pays homage to Sophie and Hans Scholl, Georg Elser, Baron von Stauffenberg, the women of Rosenstrasse, and other groups who made up the German Resistance.

TUESDAY, AUGUST 6 2019

2:00 pm

Wilmette Public Library

1242 Wilmette Ave, Wilmette

STORYTELLING

 

Susan Stone: "Angels, Demons, Rabbis and Fools: Tales From The Jewish Tradition"

with Lucia Thomas on oud and violin

Susan Stone has been a storyteller/ teaching artist for adults and children for over 30 years. Jewish folktales, Midrash, and Chasidic tales make up her repertoire, as she puts the tales back into true oral tradition weaving her personal narratives throughout the programs, illuminating the tales.

This event is free and open to the public

THURSDAY, JULY 18 2019

7:00 pm

Prospect Heights Public Library

12 N  Elm St, Prospect Heights

LECTURE

David Chack presents

 

"Varieties of Yiddish Theater's Performance – Music, Drama, and Comedy: Starring Molly Picon, Boris, Thomashevsky, Sophie Tucker, Paul Muni, Marlon Brando and more!"

David Y. Chack, professor of Jewish and Holocaust Theatre and performance at DePaul University will take us on a journey of these stars who exemplified the panoply of "Yiddish Theatre culture" and brought it to the American performance we know today. 

WEDNESDAY, JULY 17 2019

2:00 pm

Morton Grove Public Library

6140 Lincoln Ave, Morton Grove

FEATURE FILM

"Theodore Bikel: In the Shoes of Sholom Aleichem"

Portraits of two beloved icons--Sholom Aleichem and Theodore Bikel--are woven together in this enchanting new documentary. The two men have much in common: wit, wisdom and talent, all shot through with deep humanity and Yiddishkeit. 

 

TUESDAY, JULY 16 2019

2:00 pm

Skokie Public Library

5215 Oakton Street, Skokie

FEATURE FILM

"The Last Klezmer: Leopold Kozlowski, His Life and Music"

Klezmer music, sometimes called Jewish "soul" music, has a rich and lengthy past, and now, a revitalized future. This festive Jewish band music originated in pre-World War II Poland, but now resonates in a cultural and musical revival all across America. THE LAST KLEZMER looks at one of the pioneers of this music, a remarkable, 69-year-old man named Leopold Kozlowski. An actor and musical consultant in Steven Spielberg's SCHINDLER'S LIST, Kozlowski is the last active Klezmer musician trained in the original, prewar tradition.

Bernard  Berkin, who is the executive producer of the film, will introduce and lead a short follow-up discussion of the movie.

TUESDAY, JULY 9 2019

2:00 pm

Northbrook Public Library

1201 Cedar Lane, Northbrook

MULTIMEDIA

Charles Troy:
"The Creation of West Side Story"

This brave, brilliant musical tragedy, born into a world of musical comedy, took years to crystallize for its creators, then overcame daunting challenges just to get onstage.

THURSDAY, JUNE 27 2019

2:00 pm

 

Northtown Public Library

6800 N Western Ave

(please note the Northtown library 
has a new address!)

LECTURE

Miriam Levinson

"Jews in Cuba
Through the Ages"

Miriam Levinson’s passion for travel and history was inspired by listening to her father talk about those subjects from her earliest recollections. Since her teens, Miriam has traveled extensively
focusing on Jewish history and the Jewish culture of different countries and places in the USA. Miriam has spoken on Latin American Jewish migration to numerous audiences and organizations throughout the United States. For the past eighteen years she has designed and developed hundreds of trips
worldwide. A native of Cuba, she is presently writing a book on her recollections about life in Cuba. 

THURSDAY, JUNE 13 2019

7:00 pm

 

Wilmette Public Library

1242 Wilmette Ave, Wilmette

LECTURE

Jeffry Mallow

"Yiddish: Your Parents' Secret Language Revealed"

Jeffry V. Mallow is Professor of Physics Emeritus, Loyola University and Honorary Chair, Chicago YIVO Society. 

The thousand-year-old Yiddish language has given birth to a great literature -- as well as words and expressions used by parents so that their children shouldn’t understand!

 

Professor Mallow will discuss the language, the literature, the words, and the expressions. Audience participation will be encouraged.

 

 This event is free and open to the public

TUESDAY, JUNE 11 2019

7:00 pm

Northbrook Public Library

1201 Cedar Lane

 

MUSIC

Maxwell Street Klezmer Sextet

Maxwell Street Klezmer Band plays lively Eastern-European Jewish folk music that combines old-world melodies, jazz-age rhythms, and contemporary energy. They have charmed audiences from Carnegie Hall to London’s Barbican Centre with their unique Klezmer Big Band sound. Classical sophistication crossed with theatrical fun meet in a world-class performance filled with joy, soul, and good humor.   

This event is free and open to the public

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 12 2019

2:00 pm

Morton Grove Public Library

6140 Lincoln Ave., Morton Grove

MUSIC

 JAZMER

 

 Jazmer was founded in 1995 by lead vocalist Shirlee Todd. The band offers a fresh and creative approach to Jewish and American music with its extensive repertoire and interesting arrangements bridging the music of the Old World with the New.

 

Jazmer is a popular longtime participant in the annual Chicago Yivo Society Summer Festival Of Yiddish Culture.

Phone reservations required

847-929-5122

This event is free and open to the public

SUNDAY, JUNE 2 2019

10:30 am

Congregation Kol Emeth

5130 Touhy Ave, Skokie

LECTURE

Professor Kristen Fermaglich

A ROSENBERG

BY ANY OTHER NAME

A History of Jewish Name Changing in America 

The Chicago YIVO Society in partnership with Congregation Kol Emeth present a lecture and book signing by Professor Kirsten Fermaglich, Michigan State University. 

Our thinking about Jewish name changing tends to focus on clichés: ambitious movie stars
who adopted glamorous new names or insensitive Ellis Island officials who changed immigrants' names for them. But as Kirsten Fermaglich elegantly reveals, the real story is much more profound.

Kirsten Fermaglich is Associate Professor of History and Jewish Studies at Michigan State University. She is the author of American Dreams and Nazi Nightmares (2006), co-editor of the Norton Critical Edition of Betty Friedan, The Feminine Mystique (2013),
and co-editor of the journal American Jewish History.

 

This event is free and open to the public

SUNDAY, JUNE 2 2019

10:30 am

Congregation Kol Emeth

5130 Touhy Ave, Skokie

LECTURE

Professor Kirsten Fermaglich

A ROSENBERG

BY ANY OTHER NAME

A History of Jewish Name Changing in America 

The Chicago YIVO Society in partnership with Congregation Kol Emeth present a lecture and book signing by Professor Kirsten Fermaglich, Michigan State University. 

Our thinking about Jewish name changing tends to focus on clichés: ambitious movie stars
who adopted glamorous new names or insensitive Ellis Island officials who changed immigrants' names for them. But as Kirsten Fermaglich elegantly reveals, the real story is much more profound.

Kirsten Fermaglich is Associate Professor of History and Jewish Studies at Michigan State University. She is the author of American Dreams and Nazi Nightmares (2006), co-editor of the Norton Critical Edition of Betty Friedan, The Feminine Mystique (2013),
and co-editor of the journal American Jewish History.

 

This event is free and open to the public

Klepfisz immigrated to the U.S. at age eight and was raised among Yiddish-speaking, Jewish Labor Bundist (socialist) Holocaust survivors in the Bronx. She began writing poetry in 1971 and has co-edited The Tribe of Dina: A Jewish Woman's Anthology, co-founded the feminist literary magazine Conditions, and served as the Yiddish editor of the Jewish feminist magazine Bridges. She is the author of A Few Words in the Mother Tongue (Poetry) and Dreams of an Insomniac (Essays). During her time at Barnard, Klepfisz also taught for ten years at a maximum security women's prison. She received a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in poetry and was recently awarded the prestigious Adrienne Cooper Dreaming in Yiddish Award 2016.   

SUNDAY MARCH 10

5:00pm Lakeview, Chicago

 RSVP REQUIRED! (Click Here)

Location information will be provided at the time of RSVP .

SALON

A Special Evening of
Poetry & Conversation with poet, Yiddishist and feminist activist Irena Klepfisz.

Irena Klepfisz is a renowned poet, educator and feminist activist. Recently retired as a scholar and teacher of Jewish Women’s Studies at Barnard College, Klepfisz has been active in feminist, lesbian, Jewish secular and peace organizations.

 

This event continues our Chicago YIVO Society Yiddish Culture Salon series, and will be held at a private home in Lakeview.

As space is limited, your RSVP is required for this event, and will be on a first-come first-serve basis.

 To RSVP please call: 773-517-0833. Or click here, to RSVP via email.

 

 

FRIDAY FEBRUARY  22 2019

SATURDAY FEBRUARY 23

MUSIC

 Jane Peppler: Yiddish Penny Songs

Jane Peppler is coming to Chicago to sing the Yiddish songs of economic and social protest, critique of religious life, challenges to sexual harassment and alcoholism that our ancestors sang in Warsaw and New York.  Jane uncovered them and shares them with us.

 

 

Past Events

SUNDAY OCTOBER 14 2018

1:30 pm

Goodman Auditorium: IL Holocaust Museum and Education Center

9603 Woods Drive. Skokie, IL

MUSIC

Chicago YIVO Society 8th

Annual Sarah Lazarus Memorial Concert: Grand Tango Duo in concert.

Carl Algermissen, piano and Ethan Lazarus, cello.

Carl and Ethan specialize in writing original arrangements of tango music by Astor Piazzolla. This program will explore similarities between the tango beat and Jewish music with some klezmer in the mix.

RSVP & PRE-PAYMENT REQUIRED

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER ONLINE

OR BY PHONE (847)967-4889

$10 ticket includes admission to the museum. This price is for pre-paid reservations only.

At the door $15 (if available). Museum members admitted free but must make reservations online or by phone.

SATURDAY, JUNE 16 2018

9:00 pm

MARTYRS'

3855 N Lincoln Ave, Chicago

MUSIC

DANIEL KAHN &
THE PAINTED BIRD

“Freedom Is A Verb” Tour and
CD release party

 

Apocalyptic Klezmer-punk anthems
for the revolution

 

Click here for ticket information

With their new record The Butcher's Share, The Painted Bird returns to the road as the original radical Yiddish borderland bandits. The Berlin-based Detroit-born poet / translator / singer / multi-instrumentalist (accordion, piano, guitars) Daniel Kahn has reformed the band with new and old comrades: Berlin’s clarinet/sax/brass master Christian Dawid, New York’s Yiddish fiddle virtuoso Jake Shulman-Ment, expat experimental contrabassist Berlin composer Michael Tuttle, and classic klezmer drummer Hampus Melin.

The live show features projected translations and images by legendary NY underground artist Eric Drooker, whose work is woven into the album’s design, as well as material from the band’s new videos.

 

WEDNESDAY, MAY 30

7:00 - 8:30 pm

Hilton Garden Inn

1818 Maple Avenue

Evanston, IL 60201

LECTURE SERIES

Itzik's Midrash: Bridging Past and Present through Modern Yiddish Literature

Presented with the Chicago YIVO Society and the Chicago Adult Jewish Learning Initiative, a partnership of local Jewish organizations spearheaded by Spertus Institute with funding from the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago. 

 

In three Wednesday evening sessions taught by Dr. Karen Underhill, explore the poetry of Itzik Manger, one of the greats of Yiddish literature.
 

May 30, June 6, and June 13, 2018

from 7:00 to 8:30 pm

$30 for all three sessions. 

This mini-course focuses on one of the most beloved and widely read collections of Yiddish poetry in interwar Poland, the Khumesh-lider or Bible poems of Itzik Manger, later re-published as Itzik’s Midrash. Drawing on the traditions of the purim-shpil and the romantic folk ballad, these poems represent secular retellings of the stories of the Matriarchs and Patriarchs of Genesis that transfer these stories to the then-familiar landscape of small-town Eastern Europe.

Taught by Dr. Karen Underhill, this course will explore how pre-WWII Yiddish poets used modern, secular literature to make Jewish texts and traditions relevant to the concerns of secular, 20th-century readers. We will investigate how these texts become a bridge connecting generations.

The first two sessions will feature six poems from Manger’s collection, in English translation. The music of Manger’s original Yiddish verse will also be brought to life by special guest reader and native Yiddish speaker Beverly Chubat.

The third session will feature a panel discussion with members of Chicago’s growing young Yiddishist 

community. They will share their reflections about the role of Yiddish in the development of a Jewish identity today.

Knowledge of Yiddish is not required.

 

Read more about the event and register here

 

MONDAY, MAY 7

7:30 pm

Pick-Staiger Concert Hall

Northwestern University CampusMU

50 Arts Circle Drive, Evanston

LECTURE

Last Yiddish Heroes: Lost and Found Songs of Soviet Jews during World War II

The 2018 Philip M. & Ethel Klutznick Lecture
in Jewish Civilization

with Psoy Korolenko & Anna Shternshis

Singer-songwriter Psoy Korolenko (Moscow - New York) and historian Anna Shternshis (University of Toronto) bring to life rediscovered Yiddish songs of World War II in this concert and lecture program. Collected by Moisei Beregovsky and other scientists at the Kiev Cabinet for Jewish Culture, these previously unknown Yiddish songs were confiscated and hidden by the Soviet government in 1949 and have only recently come to light. The program will feature performances and the incredible stories behind these treasures.

Free and open to the public.

SUNDAY, MARCH 25 2018

2:00 pm


Congregation Sukkat Shalom

1001 Central Ave, Wilmette IL

LECTURE

Kolya Borodulin

“Love on Stage: Chagall and the Moscow Yiddish Theater (GOSET)”

Marc Chagall forged a remarkable collaboration with the avant-garde Yiddish Theater in 1920-21, that testifies to the revolutionary artist’s intimate knowledge and love of Yiddish culture and folklore. 

 

Kolya will discuss this collaboration and show rare footage of GOSET performances.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Kolya Borodulin is the master teacher and Director of Yiddish programming at the Workmen’s Circle in New York. He was born in Birobidzhan (Russia) and started to learn and teach Yiddish simultaneously when he was a young adult. 

 

He teaches Yiddish language and culture to multigenerational audiences: kids, teens, and adults (sometimes four generations together), nationally and internationally, and is credited with giving hundreds of Yiddishists their foundation in the language. His dynamic style has garnered a growing fan base across the United States and beyond. 

He is the organizer of the Trip to Yiddishland program (Circle Lodge, Hopewell Junction, New York) and Yiddish programming coordinator at KlezKanada. Borodulin is the author of Yiddish Year Round: A Curriculum for the Young Beginners and a number of Yiddish educational materials for children. He is the organizer of live, online Yiddish classes at the Workmen’s Circle.

This event is free and open to the public

SUNDAY, MARCH 11   2018

3:00 pm


Ezra-Habonim, The Niles Township Jewish Congregation

4500 Dempster, Skokie IL

LECTURE

Jonathan Brent

Unique and Newly Recovered Works in YIVO's Vilna Collection: Reclaiming the Cultural History of European Jews

This event is free and open to the public

TUESDAY, JANUARY 30

and

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 1

8:00 pm

Angel Orensanz Foundation 

172 Norfolk St, New York, NY

PERFORMANCE

The YIDDISH KING LEAR, written by Jacob Gordin (aka the Jewish Shakespeare), is without a doubt one of the most famous Yiddish plays of all time. Starring opera singer and actor David Serero in the title role of King Lear, this unique play will be performed on January 30th and February 1st 2018 at the Orensanz Foundation located in the heart of the Lower East Side, New York.

 

This revival will be starring opera star and actor David Serero as Reb Dovidl Moysheles (King Lear). The rest of the cast will include Arielle Beth Klein (Taybele), Alexander Chilton (Yaffe), Ross Kugman (Treytel), Sarah Feinmark (Gitele), and more, as well as Shawn Chang on the piano. 

 

This staged-reading is adapted in English and features classic Yiddish songs. World premiere adaptation by David Serero. 

Tickets are $26 - $36

For tickets and more information:
https://yiddishkinglear.brownpapertickets.com/

SUNDAY, JANUARY 21 . 2018

1:00 pm

Jewish Reconstructionist
Congregation

303 Dodge Ave, Evanston, IL

BOOK TALK
 

Join us for a book talk and conversation with Professor Naomi Seidman

“The Marriage Plot: Or, How Jews Fell in Love with Love, and with Literature”

For many nineteenth-century Eastern European Jews, modernization entailed the abandonment of arranged marriage in favor of the “love match.” Drawing from the research for her new book, The Marriage Plot: Or, How Jews Fell in Love with Love, and with Literature, Naomi Seidman will describe the role played by literature in this transformation, providing a “sentimental education” in the rules of romance and the choreography of courtship.

 

Naomi Seidman is Koret Professor of Jewish Culture at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley. Her books include A Marriage Made in Heaven: The Sexual Politics of Hebrew and Yiddish, Faithful Renderings: Jewish—Christian Difference and the Politics of Translation and The Marriage Plot, Or, How Jews Fell in Love with Love, and with Literature (Stanford UP).

This event is free and open to the public.
Parking available. 

Location: https://www.google.com/maps/place/Jewish+Reconstructionist+Congregation/@42.023015,-87.699135,14z/data=!4m5!3m4!1s0x0:0xcd39a4263e5a081b!8m2!3d42.0230151!4d-87.6991352?hl=en-US

With questions or for more information contact:  yivochicago@gmail.com

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 3  2017

2:00 pm

Jewish Reconstructionist
Congregation

303 Dodge Ave, Evanston, IL

LECTURE

Shane Baker Presents:

“VORTKUNST: The Art of the Yiddish Word”

A vortkontsert/recitation of Yiddish poetry and prose, with recitations in Yiddish and English supertitles, and with the background of each piece, its author and its significance in English.

Shane Baker is the best-loved Episcopalian on the Yiddish stage today. With the Congress for Jewish Culture, he has performed, lectured, and given classes in Yiddish theater and literature the world over; and tours with his critically acclaimed one-man show The Big Bupkis! A Complete Gentile’s Guide to Yiddish Vaudeville. With the New Yiddish Rep, he has played Yankl in God of Vengeance, and Vladimir in his own Yiddish translation of Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot for the play’s Yiddish world premiere, two Off-Broadway runs, and tours to Enniskillen, Northern Ireland and Paris, France.

This event is free and open to the public

THURSDAY, AUGUST 24

7:00 pm

Evanston Public Library

1703 Orrington Ave, Evanston

MUSIC

Steve Gibons Gypsy Rhythm Project

Jazz violinist Steve Gibons leads Chicago’s Gypsy Rhythm Project. They play Romanian Gypsy music and American Jazz, and a blend of the two. 

This event is free and open to the public

TUESDAY, AUGUST 22

2:00 pm

Skokie Public Library

5215 Oakton Street, Skokie

FEATURE FILM

"MIRELE EFROS"

Mirele Efros, “the Jewish Queen Lear,” was the
masterpiece of Ukrainian-born Jacob Gordin, an enormously influential Yiddish playwright whose works sought to describe and promulgate the ethos of mentshlekhkeyt: the practice of honesty, decency, and devotion toward family and community. This sophisticated version of his stage classic faithfully recreates Jewish life in turn-of-the-century Grodno, Poland.

This event is free and open to the public

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 16

2:00 pm

Morton Grove Public Library

6140 Lincoln Ave, Morton Grove

BIBI MARCELL

 

"An Afternoon of Yiddish Nostalgia"

Bibi Marcell, vocals with guitar

Gail Mangurten, piano

In addition to performing extensively on her own, Bibi is currently a featured vocalist with the Maxwell Street Klezmer Band. Between singing engagements, Bibi works as a cantorial soloist and is Religious Education Director for Congregation Hakafa in Glencoe, IL.

This event is free and open to the public

TUESDAY, AUGUST 15

2:00 pm

Wilmette Public Library

1242 Wilmette Ave, Wilmette

STORYTELLING

 

Susan Stone: "Come and Listen...Mayses for a Summer Afternoon"

SUSAN STONE has been a storyteller for adults as well as children for over 30 years. Jewish folktales and Midrash, as well as Chasidic tales, make up her repertoire. The telling puts them back into true oral tradition. Susan opens her heart and hopes the tales reach the hearts of her listeners, as she weaves her personal narratives throughout the programs, illuminating the tales.

This event is free and open to the public

THURSDAY, AUGUST 10

2:00 pm

Highland Park Public Library

494 Laurel Ave, Highland Park

LECTURE

JEFFRY MALLOW: Professor Emeritus, Loyola University: Yiddish Translations into English and Vice Versa"

 

"There are well-known translations from Yiddish into English, (“Gimpel the Fool”, “Yentl”). There are also well-known translations from English into Yiddish (“Hamlet”,”King Lear”). But there are many others. Professor Mallow will present examples: some serious, some charming, some hilarious.

This event is free and open to the public

TUESDAY, AUGUST 8

2:00 pm

Northbrook Public Library

1201 Cedar Lane, Northbrook

MULTIMEDIA

Charles Troy:
"The Creation of FunnyGirl"

Charles Troy is America’s most acclaimed dramatic musical theatre historian. His multimedia presentation tells the unusual backstory of this popular musical. 

This event is free and open to the public

THURSDAY, JULY 27

2:00 pm

Northtown Public Library

6435 N. California Ave., Chicago

MUSIC

Soprano, Eileen Berman

Eileen Berman is experienced as a cantorial soloist who Berman performs for many Jewish organizations, charities, fund-raisers, and sister/brotherhoods.  

Eileen will be accompanied by Jane Kenas-Heller on piano.

This event is free and open to the public

TUESDAY, JULY 25

2:00 pm

Skokie Public Library

5215 Oakton St, Skokie

MUSIC

CHICAGO KLEZMER ENSEMBLE

Kurt Bjorling, leader

 

CKE performs both modern and traditional klezmer music that draws directly from historical sources. Avoiding the clichés of Yiddish theater and Jewish-American popular music, they create original interpretations and compositions which build upon the rich history and tradition of the Eastern-European klezmorim. The result is a repertoire that is equally at home at a concert stage or at a wedding or celebration. Four of the five members have been in the band together since 1988 and today’s ensemble have been playing together for over fifteen years.

This event is free and open to the public

WEDNESDAY, JULY 19

7:00 pm

Morton Grove Public Library

6140 Lincoln Ave, Morton Grove

LECTURE

RABBI BARRY SCHECHTER

"Yiddish and Laughter"
 

Barry Schechter, Rabbi of Congregation Kol Emeth in Skokie, is well-known for his Jewish humor presentations, and has also lectured on a variety of subjects of Jewish interest: History of Eastern European Jews, Yiddish Language and Dialects, Austrian and German Jewish Refugees in Britain, the Holocaust, Beliefs and Practices of Judaism. 

 

His audiences have included synagogues and Jewish organizations in Chicago, Milwaukee and New York, Catholic groups in Chicago, universities in the U.S. and Britain, and Jewish organizations in Germany and Poland.

This event is free and open to the public

WEDNESDAY, JULY 19

7:00 pm

Morton Grove Public Library

6140 Lincoln Ave, Morton Grove

LECTURE

RABBI BARRY SCHECHTER

"Yiddish and Laughter"
 

Barry Schechter, Rabbi of Congregation Kol Emeth in Skokie, is well-known for his Jewish humor presentations, and has also lectured on a variety of subjects of Jewish interest: History of Eastern European Jews, Yiddish Language and Dialects, Austrian and German Jewish Refugees in Britain, the Holocaust, Beliefs and Practices of Judaism. 

 

His audiences have included synagogues and Jewish organizations in Chicago, Milwaukee and New York, Catholic groups in Chicago, universities in the U.S. and Britain, and Jewish organizations in Germany and Poland.

This event is free and open to the public

TUESDAY, JULY 18

2:00 pm

Highland Park Public Library

494 Laurel Ave, Highland Park

MUSIC

CANTOR PAVEL ROYTMAN

"Yiddish Songs"

 

Cantor Roytman has performed as a conductor and a soloist with Kol Zimrah Jewish Community Singers and Queen of All Saints Basilica Choir. He has served as a conductor for Milwaukee Jewish Community Chorale and as an executive director and conductor for Zemer Am, the Chicago’s Annual Festival of Jewish Choral Music.

This event is free and open to the public

THURSDAY, JULY 13

7:00 pm

Wilmette Public Library

1242 Wilmette Ave, Wilmette

LECTURE

ANETTE ISAACS

"The New Germany — The European Leader with a Difficult Legacy"

 

 

75 years ago at the Wannsee Conference, the genocide of European Jewry — or "final solution" — was meticulously planned. Generations of Germans are still grappling with their country's  — and in many cases their own family's — horrible legacy.

 

Join German Historian Anette Isaacs, M.A., for a fascinating discussion of how the German nation has attempted — and is still attempting — to cope with the guilt of having caused the Holocaust. 

This event is free and open to the public

TUESDAY, JULY 11

7:00 pm

Northbrook Public Library

1201 Cedar Lane, Northbrook

LECTURE

ELI MAOR

"If You Thought That Yiddish and Science Don't Mix, Think Again!"

 

Mention the word Yiddish, and images of literary works of fiction, plays, and Jewish history come to mind.  So it came to Maor as a surprise to discover that popular works on science were indeed written in Yiddish and were specifically addressed to Jewish readers of Eastern Europe. 

 

These works cover a wide range of subjects, including astronomy, physics, and elementary mathematics; even Einstein's theory of relativity is represented in three books, with equations written in Hebrew characters right-to-left. Maor will discuss the background of these works and show some of the books in his collection.

This event is free and open to the public

TUESDAY, JUNE 27

2:00 pm

Northtown Public Library

6435 N. California Ave, Chicago

MUSIC
 

DUO CONTROVERSO

Kurt Bjorling, CLARINET

Annette Bjorling, KLEZMER HARP

 

Annette Bjorling (harp) and Kurt Bjorling (clarinet, basset-horn) perform a variety of ethnic and classical music, jazz and improvisation  – specializing in klezmer.

From virtuosic listening music to engaging dance rhythms, the program includes traditional East European Shtetl wedding dances, liturgical melodies and  instrumental interpretations of Yiddish & Israeli songs. 

 

In their own interpretations & improvisations, Annette & Kurt present beloved melodies and lesser known gems of Yiddish music.

This event is free and open to the public

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 21

2:00 pm

Morton Grove Public Library

6140 N. Lincoln Ave, Morton Grove

CINEMA

"THE YIDDISH CINEMA"  

 

Narrated by prolific playwright David Mamet, this film is a perfect way to introduce new audiences to Yiddish cinema. Nourished by Yiddish literature and theater, Yiddish film production in Eastern Europe and the United States flourished between the two world wars.

 

The Yiddish Cinema traces the history of the genre through interviews, archival photographs and film clips of many of the NCJF's Yiddish feature films.

In addition, the film discusses the reasons for the decline of Yiddish cinema, including the Holocaust, the Stalinist suppression of Jewish culture in the Soviet Union, and America's demands for assimilation among its new immigrants.

This event is free and open to the public

THURSDAY, JUNE 15

7:00 pm

Highland Park Public Library

494 Laurel Ave., Highland Park

MUSIC

"STEWART FIGA'S WORLD OF YIDDISH"  

 

Stewart Figa has served as cantor at West Suburban Temple Har Zion in River Forest, Illinois, since 1998 and has been a cantor in the Chicago area since 1990. An established and in-demand performer of Yiddish and Jewish music, his programs for the annual Chicago YIVO Society Summer Festival have been cheered by capacity audiences. 

In 2015, Mr. Figa received a Grammy nomination for his work as a vocalist with the New Budapest Orpheum Society on their CD “As Dreams Fall Apart,” and in June of 2016 he appeared with the ensemble on a successful four- city tour in England. 
 

TUESDAY, JUNE 13

2:00 pm

Wilmette Public Library

1242 Wilmette Ave., Wilmette

MUSIC

JAZMER ENSEMBLE

SHIRLEY TODD, LEADER AND VOCALS

 

 Jazmer was founded in 1995 by lead vocalist Shirlee Todd. The band offers a fresh and creative approach to Jewish and American music with its extensive repertoire and interesting arrangements bridging the music of the Old World with the New.

 

Jazmer is a popular longtime participant in the annual Chicago Yivo Society Summer Festival Of Yiddish Culture.

THURSDAY, JUNE 8

6:30 pm

Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center

9603 Woods Drive. Skokie

MUSIC


Seventh Annual Sarah Lazarus Memorial Concert

GERRY TENNEY in Concert

with Leslie Tenney and Noah Tenney, vocals
 

Gerry Tenney is a singer of Yiddish songs, children’s entertainer, musican and teacher. He is also the longtime leader of one of the West Coast’s leading Klezmer bands, California Klezmer. This will be a special concert with his wife Leslie, a singer of Yiddish and Balkan music, and their son, Noah, who grew up around the West Coast Klezmer scene.

TUESDAY, JUNE 6

2:00 pm

Northbrook Public Library

1201 Cedar Lane, Northbrook

MUSIC

 

MAXWELL STREET KLEZMER QUINTET

VOCALS, VIOLIN, CLARINET, PIANO AND BASS.

 

In the 18th century, Jewish and Roma musicians crisscrossed Eastern Europe, playing for weddings and other celebrations. The unique musical style that emerged from this cross-fertilization of Chassidic and gypsy folk styles is called “klezmer,” a Yiddish word meaning “folk musician.”  The Fiddler on the Roof—he was a klezmer!

 

Audiences of all backgrounds are delighted by Maxwell Street's high-energy performances that glow with warmth and humor.

 

Founded in 1983 by Lori Lippitz, Maxwell Street has played at Carnegie Hall and toured Europe.  The band marked its 30th “Bandiversary” at The Old Town School of Folk Music in 2013.   

 

This event is free and open to the public

SUNDAY, MARCH 19

2:00 pm

Jewish Reconstructionist Congregation

303 Dodge Ave. EVANSTON

LECTURE


Lynching, Race and Racism in American Yiddish Fiction
 

This lecture will discuss Joseph Opatoshu's 1923 story Lintsheray ("Lynching") to examine the resonances of this them in Yiddish culture.

 

Location:

Morton Grove Public Library

6140 Lincoln Ave

 

Wednesday, July 6th 2016

2:00 PM

MUSIC

Steve Gibons Gypsy Rhythm Project

Gibons’s band brings the improvisational sophistication of jazz to Romanian and Bulgarian Gypsy music without smoothing out its ragged edges.
--Peter Margasak, Chicago Reader

 

Steve Gibons - Violin

Nicolae Feraru - Cimbalom

Julian Milo - Accordian

Dan Delorenzo - Bass

Mike Allemana - Guitar

Tim Mulvenna - Percussion

 

Blending traditional Roma music with Gypsy swing, Steve Gibons (violin) leads a high energy, sweet sounding, and exceedingly talanted band.  On an dulcimer like instrument called the cimbalom, Nicolae Feraru of Bucharest, brings a virtuaosic authenticity to the stage while an American style Jazz band rounds out the diversity of sound.

Location:

Morton Grove Public Library

6140 Lincoln Ave

 

Thursday June 30, 2016

2:00 PM

MUSIC

Jazmer

For Shirlee, music and languages seem to go hand in hand. She comes from a bilingual home where both English and Yiddish were spoken, and she has performed in those languages since childhood. She also performs in Spanish, which she speaks fluently, as well as Russian, ladino (judeo espanol) and Hebrew. Her cantorial experience comes from being the lead soloist for Cantor Dale Lind for over 12 years. She also opened for the Zim Brothers and the Andy Statman Klezmer Band at the Old Town School of Music.

 

Before co-founding Jazmer with Don Jacobs (Clarinet & saxophone), she was the lead vocalist for M’Chaiya. In addition to working with Jazmer , she is part of a piano-vocal duo which performs music from the Great American Songbook, jazz standards, show tunes and international music for private parties, organizations and special events.

 

The ensemble brings a lot of talent to the stage. Don Jacobs has played klezmer and Jewish music for over 25 years and is a founding member of Jazmer, as well as its musical director. Ruby Harris (mandolin, violin and vocals) was born and raised in New York but lived in Israel for 12 years where he toured and recoreded with the Diaspora Yishgiva  Band. In the US, he has performed with Buddy Guy and opned for Ray Charles and Marshall Tucker. Gail Mangurten (piano) has played with musical theatre groups such as Tuxedo Junction and regularly performs with the College of DuPage Jazz Band. She is also a member of the Maxwell Street Klezmer Band and Michael Gassman (percussion) has with such local bands as the Del Crustaceans, The Little Cow and The Leaders. Mike owned and operated the Percussion Shop in Evanston for 17 years and manufactured his own line of drums.

Richard Armandi (bass and tuba) has performed with such luminaries as Marion Mc Partland, Rosemary Clooney, Bob Newhart, Martin Short, Rich Little and many others. As a tubist, he has performed with the Lyric Opera, American Ballet Theatre, Grant Park Orchestra and Chicago Brass Quintet while John Vitale (guitar) is fluent in rock, blues, pop, jazz, R&B and country. John was the musical director for the Free Street Theatre in 1978 and 1981, and he and the entire cast were nominated for a Jeff award for the musical “I’m Getting My Act Together”. John and his wife, Susan, have their own musical ensemble , the Vitale Group

 


http://jazmerband.com/

Location

Chicago Public Library, Northtown

6435 N. California Ave.

Thursday June 29, 2016

2:00 pm

 

LECTURE, BOOK SIGNING: 

Professor Jeffry Mallow

 

Zionist Diarist:

Reflections on antisemitism, Radical Islam, and more from a Labor Zionist

Professor Jeffry V. Mallow will discuss selected topics from his book Zionist Diarist. These will include anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism, Europe and Israel, Radical Islam, and the so-called “Jewish American Princess.” Personally autographed books will be available for sale after the program.

Jeffry V. Mallow, emeritus professor, Loyola University Chicago, is past national president of the Labor Zionist Alliance and a member of the board of the American Zionist organization Ameinu. He has also published books of Jewish humor. His books can be found here on Amazon but come get Professor Mallow's latest, Zionist Diarist, in person and signed.

Thursday June 23, 2016

2:00 pm

 

MULTIMEDIA LECTURE: Charles Troy

 

The Creation of

Fiddler on the Roof

Location

Skokie Public Library

Oakton St.

Join educator and graphic designer, Charles Troy, for a multimedia presentation on the creation of Fiddler on The Roof - a smah hit musical based on 'Tevyeh the Dairyman' by Sholem Aleichem. In 1964, the Broadway musical broke records and, the film won three academy awards.

Location

Northbrook Public Library

1201 Cedar ln.

 

Tuesday, June 21  2016

2:00 PM

MUSIC

Chicago Klezmer Ensamble


Kurt Björling – clarinet, tsimbl and accordion
Eve Monzingo – clarinet, piano
Joshue Huppet – violin
Deborah Strauss – violin
Alan Enrich – bass

 

Active since 1984, the Chicago Klezmer Ensemble is one of the oldest of the klezmer music groups in America. By the late 1980s they were playing “the most authentic and the most exciting Jewish instrumental music in this country”. By that time the ensemble’s leader Kurt Björling had learned almost the entire accessible klezmer repertoire and was actively teaching it to aspiring instrumentalists.The members of the Chicago Klezmer Ensemble have discovered real power of musicality in the Jewish klezmer repertoire and style. While many Jewish – American klezmer music groups have subordinated musical taste to ethnic nostalgia, this ensemble looks for the essence of the musical structures underlying klezmer music and takes these as the starting point.To understand the performance of the Chicago Klezmer Ensemble contemporary listeners must realize that pre-emigration times klezmer music had a dual function, both as ecstatic dance music and as sophisticated music for listening.

 

 

http://muziker.org/chicago-klezmer-ensemble/

Location:

Evanston Public Library

1703 Orrington

 

MUSIC

Cantor Pavel Roytman
“Yiddish Songs”

 

Wednesday, June 14  2016

2:00 PM

Cantor Roytman will perform classic Yiddish songs. Cantor Pavel Roytman is a native of Nikolaev, Ukraine. At the age of seven he was accepted as a piano student to a specialized music school for gifted children. He continued his studies in piano and conducting at the Kaliningrad Music College (Russia) and later at Petrozavodsk State Conservatory. While in Petrozavodsk, Pavel joined the Klezmer Shpil Orchestra as a soloist. Between 1991 and 1994, Pavel and the Klezmer Shpil Orchestra performed extensively throughout Russia, Finland, Norway and Sweden. In 1993, the orchestra made its first recording–“Yiddish Songs” by Klezmer Shpil.

Cantor Roytman has performed as a conductor and a soloist with Kol Zimrah Jewish Community Singers and Queen of All Saints Basilica Choir. He has served as a conductor for Milwaukee Jewish Community Chorale and as an executive director and conductor for Zemer Am,the Chicago’s Annual Festival of Jewish Choral Music.udied chazzanut. http:

 

cantorpavelroytman.com

APRIL 2016

3rd Int’l Polish Jewish Studies Workshop

“Doikeyt, Diaspora, Borderlands: Imagining Polish Jewish Territories”
University of Illinois at Chicago

April 10-12, 2016

All campus events are free and open to the public!

Featuring 9  lectures & programs on Yiddish Culture!

 

On April 10-12, 2016, the UIC Department of Slavic & Baltic Languages & Literatures, in cooperation with Princeton University, Ohio State University, the University of Michigan, and the Adam Mickiewicz Institute (Warsaw) will be hosting the 3rd Annual International Polish Jewish Studies Workshop. Convened by the Polish Jewish Studies Initiative, this three-day workshop will highlight key developments and new directions in the growing field of Polish Jewish studies, with a particular focus on changing scholarly approaches to Polish Jewish territories, both geographical and imaginary.

 

Many speakers this year will focus on YIDDISH CULTURE and Jewish Political Life in Interwar Poland. Below is a sampling. The full program follows or can be viewed by clicking this button:

 

 

Kenneth Moss (Johns Hopkins University) -  Keynote Tuesday, April 12th, 11:15 am:  “Polish Jewish Political Culture in the Shadow of a Polish Jewish Condition: Renegotiating Minorityhood, Diaspora, Zionism, and Home in the 1930s.”

 

Karolina Szymaniak, ŻIH, Warsaw and University of Wrocław: “Yiddishland - The Trouble with an Elusive Subject or How (Not) To Write the History of Yiddish Culture from a Polish Perspective.”

 

Marc Caplan, UM Frankel Institute: “A Disenchanted Elijah: Folklore, Conspiracy Theories, and Allegory in S. Ansky’s Destruction of Galicia.”

 

Sam Kassow,  Trinity College: “Polish Jews, Know Your Land: Landkentenish in the 1930's.”

 

Mikhail Krutikov, UM Ann Arbor: “Belarus in Yiddish Modernist Poetry.”

 

Michael Steinlauf, Gratz College: “’Jews of All Lands and Peoples, Unite!…’ Y.L. Peretz & Diaspora Nationalism.”

 

Julie Cooper, Tel Aviv University: “A Diasporic Critique of Diasporism.”

 

Daniel Kahn, Songwriter & Translator; Director, Maxim Gorki Theater, Berlin. “Subversive Song Smuggling and Universal Golus.”

 

Anita Norich, University of Michigan: “Yiddish Translation Matters.”

 

Panels, held at Richard J. Daley Library on UIC’s downtown Chicago campus, will explore physical territories and cultural spaces that have shaped Jewish, Polish and Polish Jewish cultures and histories, and that have come into being at and through the intersection of Jewish and Polish cultures.

 

ACCOMPANYING LECTURES and FILM SHOWINGS before and during the conference:

 

- Krzystof Czyżewski (Founder & Director, Borderlands Foundation, Sejny) “Borderland as Koinos Logos” -The Stefan & Lucy Hejna Annual Lecture - Friday, April 8th, 4:15 pm – UIC Daley Library

 

-"Karski & the Lords of Humanity" Film Showing with Director Sławomir Grünberg - Friday, April 8th, 7:30 pm – Copernicus Center - 5216 W. Lawrence Ave.  [TICKETS]: **Filmmaker – Author – Critics Special Event** with E. Thomas Wood & Panelists

 

- “Raise the Roof” – The Handshouse Gwoździec Synagogue Project. Film Showing with Laura & Rick Brown, Creators of the Handshouse Project -  Monday, April 11th, 7:45 pm - UIC Theatre School – 1040 W. Harrison St.

 

(Complete Schedule of Conference Panels and Roundtable Discussions Follows Below)

 

About the Polish Jewish Studies Initiative

 

The April 2016 workshop and conference at UIC will be the third in a series of gatherings bringing together international scholars working in Polish Jewish Studies — following previous workshops held in March 2014 at Ohio State University, and April 2015 at Princeton University. The goal of these workshops has been to establish an international forum for communication among scholars working at the intersection of Jewish and Polish Studies; to identify theoretical and methodological developments of greatest relevance to new research in the field of Polish Jewish Studies; and to mark a path for scholars, educators and activists who would like to see the study of Polish and Jewish cultures more intentionally and productively intertwined.

 

                                                                                           With the Generous Support of:

Culture.pl-IAM Campus Project •  Sigmund Rolat • The Taube Foundation for Jewish Life and Culture • The Jan Karski Educational Foundation • Andrzej Rojek • Copernicus Program in Polish Studies, University of Michigan • UIC Fund for Polish Jewish Studies • Stefan & Lucy Hejna Fund, UIC • Loyola University Program in Polish Studies •  School of Literatures, Culture Studies & Linguistics, UIC • Chicago YIVO Society • UIC Program in Jewish Studies •  YIVO Institute for Jewish Research • UIC Institute for the Humanities • UIC Richard J. Daley Library

Kurt & Annette Bjorling: Duo Controverso

Michael Alpert & Julian Kytasty 27/07/2015, Lviv

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 9th 2015

at EVANSTON SPACE

1245 Chicago Ave, Evanston, IL 60202

 

THE BROTHERS NAZAROFF

-ALBUM RELEASE CONCERT-

 

FEATURING:

Daniel “Danik Nazaroff” Kahn: vocals, accordion, bird whistle; born Detroiter, part-time Berliner, leader of The Painted Bird.

 

Psoy “Pasha Nazaroff” Korolenko: vocals, tumler; traveling avant-bard from Moscow.

 

Jake “Yankl Nazaroff” Shulman-Ment: vocals, violin; NYC virtuoso violinist, composer, Fullbright scholar, member of The Painted Bird.

On October 23, Smithsonian Folkways will release The Brothers Nazaroff: The Happy Prince, a boisterous, high-energy tribute to cult Yiddish troubadour Nathan “Prince” Nazaroff, who recorded the mysterious Folkways 10-inch record Jewish Freilach Songs in 1954. International klezmer supergroup The Brothers Nazaroff, composed of Daniel Kahn, Psoy Korolenko, Michael Alpert, Jake Shulman-Ment, Bob Cohen, and Hampus Melin, breathe new life into the discordant, obscure, jubilant legacy of their Happy Prince.

In the mid-20th century, Yiddish music in America was generally relegated to lullabies, elegies, and folk songs that had been Americanized and presented in a watered-down, decorous style. Enter, then, the "Prince." There is little information about Nazaroff other than that he may have immigrated to the U.S. in 1914, was of Jewish Russian descent, and was a self-described “big time” performer. Other than one photograph, few details about him or his life are known. Nazaroff’s Jewish Freilach Songs, a rollicking, rebellious, joyful album (“Freilach” means happy, after all) that not only embraces but flaunts its Yiddish roots at full volume. As writer Michael Wex (Born to Kvetch) observes in the liner notes of The Happy Prince, Nazaroff’s original album is “a vinyl Yiddish counterpart to those old cartoons where the toys in the shop come to life after hours and misbehave.”

It’s no wonder that, upon discovering  Jewish Freilach Songs, the members of The Brothers Nazaroff, all esteemed klezmer musicians in their own right, were compelled to join forces. They were assured that these songs deserve a place in the current Yiddish cultural revival and in the ears of modern audiences. Speaking of Nazaroff’s original album, Wex comments, “If there had been Yiddish bar bands in America in the early 1950s, this is what they would have sounded like.” The Brothers Nazaroff are that very bar band for the 21st century. “Vander Ich Mir Lustig (While I'm Happily Walking)” is a celebratory romp of financial ruin, flash floods, and marital dysfunction, while “Freilachs (Medley of Freilachs)” is a chant-driven folk
dance with the “sonic energy of a punk rock hoedown” (Kahn). “Yiddel Mit Zein Fidel (Little Jew with His Fiddle),” taken from a recording Nazaroff made in 1928, highlights Jake Shulman-Ment’s masterful fiddle playing. Album artwork for The Happy Prince is by renowned illustrator Ben Katchor (The Cardboard Valise, Hand-Drying in America, The Jew of New York).


The members of the group hail from all over the world and, have, through their love of the music, as Kahn says, “become a family of Nazaroffs. Like the Ramones, or the 3 Mustafas 3.” The group is also the subject of an upcoming documentary feature film , directed by Csaba Bereczki (Hukkle, 2002; Ktown Cowboys, 2015), following The Brothers all over the new world and the old, from Quebec to New York to Romania to Paris to Berlin, due out in 2016.

 

LISTEN TO NEW TRACK, 'Vander Ich Mir Lustig (While I’m Happily Walking)'

Location:

Northbrook Public Library

1201 Cedar Lane

Northbrook, IL 60062

 

Tuesday August 18th, 2015

2:00 PM

Lecture by Professor Jeffry Mallow:

"Anti-Semitism: Alive & Well?"

JEFFRY MALLOW is Loyola University Chicago emeritus professor of physics. He is the past national president of the Labor Zionist Alliance, now renamed Ameinu. He is also honorary chair of the Chicago YIVO Society. Dr. Mallow is author of the Jewish humor book, "Our Pal God" and Other Presumptions, and of Zionist Diarist, a collection of essays on the condition of the Jews in the last several decades. Order Jeffry Mallow's books at amazon.com.

Location:

Skokie  Public Library

5215 Oakton Street

Skokie, IL 60077

Thursday August 13th, 2015

2:00 PM

Storyteller: Susan Stone

"A Leaf from the Tree of Knowledge & Other Tales"

'Susan shares her stories with the technical expertise of her theatre training and the intuitive wisdom of a true storyteller. From dramatic, introspective Jewish tales for adults, to lively participatory multicultural stories for children, she has a unique understanding of her listeners' needs. She also teaches storytelling to teachers at National-Louis University, is a published author, and has been honored with many awards for her CDs (Parents' Choice Gold Award, Storytelling World Award, NAPPA Gold Award). A passionate performer for over 20 years, Susan's tales entertain, enlighten and illuminate the human condition. School Library Journal declares, "she is an incredibly talented storyteller."

National Jewish Book Award winner and renowned folklorist Professor Howard Schwartz has said, “In her hands, the tales, no matter how ancient, come hauntingly alive where every tale can be heard as if for the first time.”

 

www.susanstone-storyteller.com

 

 

Location:

Evanston Public Library

1703 W. Orrington Avenue

Evanston, IL 60201

 

Slide Lecture: Professor Karen Underhill
"Warsaw's POLIN Museum & New-Old Narratives of Jewish Belonging in Poland"

Thursday August 6th, 2015

7:00 PM

 

Professor Karen Underhill is Assistant Professor of Polish Literature and Polish-Jewish Studies in the Department of Slavic and Baltic Languages and Literatures at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She lectures in Poland during the summers on the dynamics of Jewish memory and the cultural revival in Poland and on contemporary Polish-Jewish relations, and is a member of the Board of Directors of the Chicago YIVO Society. This lecture focuses on the  POLIN Museum in Warsaw that opned in April of 2013. A milestone in Polish-Jewish cultural education and evolution, the museum tells the often overlooked history of Polish-Jewish life and coexistence as the country's Jewish cultural renaissance continues to grow. (See video below)

 

Professor Underhill completed her doctoral dissertation, entitled “Bruno Schulz and Jewish Modernity” under the direction of Bozena Shallcross at the University of Chicago Department of Slavic Languages & Literatures in June 2011. She was 2013-2013 Joseph Kremen Memorial Fellow at YIVO Institute for Jewish Research; has been an educational and tour program consultant for the Taube Jewish Heritage Tour program, and the Mi-Dor Le-Dor Jewish heritage education program, and is founder of Massolit Books & Cafe in Kraków.

 

Museum Website: http://www.polin.pl/en

 

Location:
Highland Park Public Library

494 Laurel Avenue

Higland Park IL 60035

 

Performance: Cantor Pavel Roytman
“Yiddish and Russian Songs”

 

Tuesday August 4th, 2015

2:00 PM

 

Accompanied by Peter Sadkhin on accordion and Vladimir Liberman on clarinet, Cantor Roytman will perform classic Yiddish and Russian songs. Cantor Pavel Roytman is a native of Nikolaev, Ukraine. At the age of seven he was accepted as a piano student to a specialized music school for gifted children. He continued his studies in piano and conducting at the Kaliningrad Music College (Russia) and later at Petrozavodsk State Conservatory. While in Petrozavodsk, Pavel joined the Klezmer Shpil Orchestra as a soloist. Between 1991 and 1994, Pavel and the Klezmer Shpil Orchestra performed extensively throughout Russia, Finland,
Norway and Sweden. In 1993, the orchestra made its first recording–“Yiddish Songs” by Klezmer Shpil.

 

In 1994, Cantor Roytman immigrated to the United States where he obtained his Bachelor of Music in Voice Performance from DePaul University and Master of Music in Musicology from Northwestern University. Throughout this time he also stIn Chicago, Cantor Roytman has performed as a conductor and a soloist with Kol Zimrah Jewish Community Singers and Queen of All Saints Basilica Choir. He has served as a conductor for Milwaukee Jewish Community Chorale and as an executive director and conductor for Zemer Am,the Chicago’s Annual Festival of Jewish Choral Music.udied chazzanut. http:

 

cantorpavelroytman.com

Lecture: Professor Joshua Shanes

"Di Galitsiyaners: The Jews of Galicia"

Thursday July 16th, 2015

2:00 PM

 

 

Location:

Evanston Public Library

1703 W. Orrington Avenue

Evanston, IL 60201

Joshua Shanes is Associate Professor of Jewish Studies at the College of Charleston. His research focuses on Central and East European Jewry in the 19th and 20th centuries, specifically turn-of-the-century Galicia and the rise of Zionism as a counter-movement to the traditional Jewish establishment. A native of Chicago, Dr. Shanes has been widely published on Jewish cultural and political history.


In 2012, he published his book, Diaspora Nationalism and Jewish Identity in Habsburg Galicia, about which Alison Frank of Harvard University said, "The field has been in desperate need of this study." 

From Professor Shanes' Book description on Amazon:

The triumph of Zionism has clouded recollection of competing forms of Jewish nationalism vying for power a century ago. This study explores alternative ways to construct the modern Jewish nation. Jewish nationalism emerges from this book as a Diaspora phenomenon much broader than the Zionist movement. Like its non-Jewish counterparts, Jewish nationalism was first and foremost a movement to nationalize Jews, to construct a modern Jewish nation while simultaneously masking its very modernity. This book traces this process in what was the second largest Jewish community in Europe, Galicia. The history of this vital but very much understudied community of Jews fills a critical lacuna in existing scholarship while revisiting the broader question of how Jewish nationalism - or indeed any modern nationalism - was born. Based on a wide variety of sources, many newly uncovered, this study challenges the still-dominant Zionist narrative by demonstrating that Jewish nationalism was a part of the rising nationalist movements in Europe.

 

 

Location:

Edgewater Public Library

1210 W Elmdale Ave.

(at Broadway)

Chicago, IL 60660

Film: 'Schund' (2010)

Tuesday July 14th, 2015

2:00 PM (Also showing August 12 in Wheeling)

 

 

'Schund', or 'trash' in Yiddish, is a clever and heartfelt mockumentary unfolds like a detective story exploring the disappearance of a fictional Yiddish actor 25 years ago. The only clue: a mysterious inscription on the door of his house reading "schund".

Along the way, we meet the very real colorful characters who made up Israel's vibrant Yiddish theater scene during the country's first decades. Yiddish theater thrived even as it drew ire from an Israeli establishment bent on suppressing what it felt was a threat to the primacy of Hebrew culture. (Summary from Jewish film.org)

 

Watch the trailer below:

 

 

 

Location:

Wheeling Public Library, Indian Trails

355 South Schoenbeck Road

Wheeling, IL 60090

 

Concert: Stewart Figa Trio's "50 Shades of Yiddish: Songs of Passion & Humor"

Wednesday July 8th, 2015

2:00 PM

 

 

Cantor Stewart Figa will be accompannied by Hya Levinson on Piano and Don Stille on accordion for this celebration of Yiddish Music. Figa has served at West Suburban Temple Har Zion in River Forest Illinois since 1998 and has been a Cantor in the Chicago area since 1990. As member of the New Budapest Orpheum Society, a Chicago based musical troupe dedicated to reviving European Jewish music from the first half of the 20th century, he has sung at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington D.C. and at the Neue Gallerie in New York City.

 

In the 1980’s Mr. Figa performed for several seasons in Yiddish Theatre productions in New York City, having had the privilege of working with some of the legendary greats of the Yiddish stage. A recognized singer of the Yiddish repertoire, he appeared in a guest role singing on the CBS-TV Golden Globe Award-winning program Brooklyn Bridge, and has given concerts locally at the Harold Washington Library, the Spertus Institute, the Arts Club of Chicago, Anshe Emet, K.A.M. Isaiah Israel, North Shore Congregation Israel, and has appeared as a soloist with the Halevi Choral Society. He has received Degrees from Northwestern University and Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies.

http://www.cedillerecords.org/artists/stewart-figa

Location:

Skokie  Public Library

5215 Oakton Street

Skokie, IL 60077

Concert: Bibi Marcell & Gail Mangurten perform "Nostalgic Yiddish Songs"

Thursday July 9th, 2015

2:00 PM

 

 

Vocalist. Bibi has been performing music throughout the world for many years, spending most of her time in the Chicago area. She began her singing career with her father and later joined the Chicago Klezmer Ensemble. 

 

In addition to performing extensively on her own, Bibi is celebrating her 11th year as a vocalist with the Maxwell Street Klezmer band. Between singing engagements, Bibi works as a cantorial soloist and Religious School Director at Congregation Hakafa.

 

Pianist, Gail Mangurten graduated from Indiana University in Bloomington, and has played with musical theater groups such as Tuxedo Junction.  She performs regularly with the College of DuPage Jazz Band.  She has made four recordings with Maxwell Street and composed the program Jewish Songbirds of Tin Pan Alley.  Gail and Alan live in Morton Grove, Illinois

 

 

 

Location:

Highland Park Public Library

494 Laurel Avenue

Higland Park IL 60035

 

Concert: Jazmer

Tuesday July 7th, 2015

2:00 PM

 

 

For Shirlee, music and languages seem to go hand in hand. She comes from a bilingual home where both English and Yiddish were spoken, and she has performed in those languages since childhood. She also performs in Spanish, which she speaks fluently, as well as Russian, ladino (judeo espanol) and Hebrew. Her cantorial experience comes from being the lead soloist for Cantor Dale Lind for over 12 years. She also opened for the Zim Brothers and the Andy Statman Klezmer Band at the Old Town School of Music.

 

Before co-founding Jazmer with Don Jacobs (Clarinet & saxophone), she was the lead vocalist for M’Chaiya. In addition to working with Jazmer , she is part of a piano-vocal duo which performs music from the Great American Songbook, jazz standards, show tunes and international music for private parties, organizations and special events.

 

The ensemble brings a lot of talent to the stage. Don Jacobs has played klezmer and Jewish music for over 25 years and is a founding member of Jazmer, as well as its musical director. Ruby Harris (mandolin, violin and vocals) was born and raised in New York but lived in Israel for 12 years where he toured and recoreded with the Diaspora Yishgiva  Band. In the US, he has performed with Buddy Guy and opned for Ray Charles and Marshall Tucker. Gail Mangurten (piano) has played with musical theatre groups such as Tuxedo Junction and regularly performs with the College of DuPage Jazz Band. She is also a member of the Maxwell Street Klezmer Band and Michael Gassman (percussion) has with such local bands as the Del Crustaceans, The Little Cow and The Leaders. Mike owned and operated the Percussion Shop in Evanston for 17 years and manufactured his own line of drums.

Richard Armandi (bass and tuba) has performed with such luminaries as Marion Mc Partland, Rosemary Clooney, Bob Newhart, Martin Short, Rich Little and many others. As a tubist, he has performed with the Lyric Opera, American Ballet Theatre, Grant Park Orchestra and Chicago Brass Quintet while John Vitale (guitar) is fluent in rock, blues, pop, jazz, R&B and country. John was the musical director for the Free Street Theatre in 1978 and 1981, and he and the entire cast were nominated for a Jeff award for the musical “I’m Getting My Act Together”. John and his wife, Susan, have their own musical ensemble , the Vitale Group

 


http://jazmerband.com/

Location:

Morton Grove Public Library

6140 Lincoln Avenue

Morton Grove, IL 60053

 

Lecture by Annette Isaacs:

"Germany & Israel - 50 Years of an Unlikely Freindship"

Thursday July 2nd, 2015

2:00 PM

 

 

Throughout the last almost seven decades Israel and Germany have been connected through the Holocaust and its aftermath. What at first glance seems to be a rather unlikely relationship has evolved over time into a blossoming friendship and successful economic bond. In order for this to happen Germany had to face its Nazi legacy. Join German historian Anette Isaacs as she discusses how her native country has attempted to cope with the guilt of the Holocaust and how this painful but necessary process heralded a new era in German- Israeli relations.

Anette Isaacs did her graduate work at Emory University, Georgia, the University of Vienna, and at the Free University in Berlin. She holds Master´s Degrees in American Studies, Political Science, and History.

 

Location:

Northbrook Public Library

1201 Cedar Lane

Northbrook, IL 60062

 

Charles Troy Presents a Multimedia Program:

"Irving Berlin: The Ultimate Immigrant"

Tuesday June 30th, 2015

7:00 PM

 

 

composer and lyracist, Irving Berlin’s (1888 - 1989), amazing life story. Berlin, the son of a Shochet (Kosher livestock slaughter), had immigrated from Russia with his family in 1893 at four years old. He began as a singing waiter and ended up penning some of the most iconic pieces of the fiirst half of the 20th Century, including "God Bless America". Berlin used his fame and wealth to further numerous Jewish social and cultural causes.

 

Watch a video preview of Charles Troy's program below!

 

 

Location:

Skokie  Public Library

5215 Oakton Street

Skokie, IL 60077

 

Film: Lost Embrace (2004, Argentina)

Thursday June 25th, 2015

2:00 PM

 

 

The below plot summary is from IMBD, and was written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

 

"In Buenos Aires, the twenty and something year old Jewish-Argentinean Ariel Makaroff has left the University of Architecture and spends his time wandering through the downtown gallery where his mother has a lingerie shop and his brother runs an importation business, trying to get his Polish passport and move to Europe. Ariel has never understood why his father left him when he was a baby to fight in the Yom Kippur War in 1973. When his father returns to Buenos Aires, Ariel discovers the reason why his father left his family."

 

The film is in Spanish, Yiddish, and Russian with English subtitles. It has won numerous awards, including the Berlin Film Festival's Sliver Bear for Best Actor, Daniel Hendler, and the Jury Grand Prix fro director, Daniel Burnman. Adriana Aizemberg has also won acclaim for her supporting role, including The Argentinean Film Critics Association's Silver Condor for Best Supporting actress.

 

Location:

Morton Grove Public Library

6140 Lincoln Avenue

Morton Grove, IL 60053

 

Favorite Yiddish Musical Gems with Eileen Berman & Jane Kenas

Wednesday June 24th, 2015

2:00 PM

 

 

Soprano Eileen Berman, an experienced cantorial soloist who has appeared with many Chicagoland symphonies and music festivals, will perform with Jane Kenas, piano accompanist, who works with the Northeastern Illinois University's Opera Workshop.

 

 

Location:

Edgewater Public Library

1210 W Elmdale Ave.

(at Broadway)

Chicago, IL 60660

 

Jeff & Janis Vocal Duo

Tuesday June 23rd, 2015

2:00 PM

 

 

Performing Yiddish favorites, Jeff Winter and Janis Fine, known as Jeff and Janis, bring a fresh interpretation to traditional and contemporary songs. Jeff and Janis are a Chicago based duo who perform at many functions including synagogue events, festivals, family gatherings, fund raisers, and many other events. Using acoustic instruments and vocal harmonies, Jeff and Janis are known for their cabaret style presentations and engaging presence.

 

http://jeffandjanis.com/

Location:

Northbrook Public Library

1201 Cedar Lane

Northbrook, IL 60062

 

Steve Gibons Gypsy Rhythm Project

Tuesday June 16th, 2015

2:00 PM

 

 

Gibons’s band brings the improvisational sophistication of jazz to Romanian and Bulgarian Gypsy music without smoothing out its ragged edges.
--Peter Margasak, Chicago Reader

 

Steve Gibons - Violin

Nicolae Feraru - Cimbalom

Julian Milo - Accordian

Dan Delorenzo - Bass

Mike Allemana - Guitar

Tim Mulvenna - Percussion

 

Blending traditional Roma music with Gypsy swing, Steve Gibons (violin) leads a high energy, sweet sounding, and exceedingly talanted band.  On an dulcimer like instrument called the cimbalom, Nicolae Feraru of Bucharest, brings a virtuaosic authenticity to the stage while an American style Jazz band rounds out the diversity of sound.

Location:

Highland Park Public Library

494 Laurel Avenue

Higland Park IL 60035

Yiddish & Laughter with Rabbi Barry Schechter

Thursday June 4th, 2015

7:00 PM

 

 

Rabbi Barry Schechter was born in London, England. Following Yeshiva studies at Etz Chaim in London and Gateshead Talmudical Academy he was ordained as a Rabbi. He has master's degrees in economics from Cambridge University and Essex University in England and did graduate work at Northwestern University. Serving Congregation Kol Emeth since 1981, first as Cantor and then Rabbi.

 

Rabbi Schechter has also become well-known for his programs on Jewish humor. These have been given at synagogues in the Chicago area, Milwaukee and New York, as well as Hadassah groups, YIVO, public libraries, the Universities of Chicago, Hartford, Reading (England) and the Jewish organization Gesher in Berlin. His popular Cable TV series Yiddish and Laughter won a Telly Award in 1999. 

He has also lectured on the History of Eastern European Jews, Yiddish Language and Dialects, Austrian and German Jewish Refugees in Britain, the Holocaust, and other subjects of Jewish interest. 

 

Rabbi Schechter speaks Yiddish, German, Hebrew, Polish, Russian and French, and has published articles in scholarly journals, as well as in the National Jewish Post and Opinion and the Washington Post. 

 

He has lectured on Beliefs and Practices of Judaism to Catholic groups.

Duo Controverso

Wednesday June 10th, 2015

2:00 PM

 

 

Location:

Wheeling Public Library, Indian Trails

355 South Schoenbeck Road

Wheeling, IL 60090

 


Kurt Bjorling – Clarinet
Annette Bjorling – Harp

 

Duo Controverso offer a Unique Sound & Instrumentation,
an Exciting & Poetic, Timeless & Modern Repertoire
including traditional ethnic music, classical music, original compositions and jazz. Their intimate acoustic sound spans a wide expressive range, inviting the listener to pause and enjoy music of quiet intensity and ecstatic energy in an otherwise loud and hurried world.

 

Annette & Kurt interpret, arrange and improvise pieces based on traditional folk and ethnic music, such as East-European klezmer, Turkish, Greek and Romanian dances, Jewish cantorial solos…

 

The classical repertoire of Duo Controverso ranges from renaissance and baroque-era masters (Bach, Gibbons, Handel, Lasso, Vivaldi…) classical and romantic favorites (Chopin, Mendelssohn, Spohr…) to French impressionists (Fauré, Debussy, Saint-Saëns…) and contemporary composers.

Annette & Kurt play well-known standards as well as obscure but quite beautiful jazz and pop melodies.

 

Duo Controverso performs for various occasions: entertaining and educational concerts, creating festive ambiance and lively dance music.

 

 

http://muziker.org/duo-controverso/

Location:

Evanston Public Library

1703 W. Orrington Avenue

Evanston, IL 60201

 

Chicago Klezmer Ensamble

Thursday June 11th, 2015

2:00 PM

 

 


Kurt Björling – clarinet, tsimbl and accordion
Eve Monzingo – clarinet, piano
Joshue Huppet – violin
Deborah Strauss – violin
Alan Enrich – bass

 

Active since 1984, the Chicago Klezmer Ensemble is one of the oldest of the klezmer music groups in America. By the late 1980s they were playing “the most authentic and the most exciting Jewish instrumental music in this country”. By that time the ensemble’s leader Kurt Björling had learned almost the entire accessible klezmer repertoire and was actively teaching it to aspiring instrumentalists.The members of the Chicago Klezmer Ensemble have discovered real power of musicality in the Jewish klezmer repertoire and style. While many Jewish – American klezmer music groups have subordinated musical taste to ethnic nostalgia, this ensemble looks for the essence of the musical structures underlying klezmer music and takes these as the starting point.To understand the performance of the Chicago Klezmer Ensemble contemporary listeners must realize that pre-emigration times klezmer music had a dual function, both as ecstatic dance music and as sophisticated music for listening.

 

 

http://muziker.org/chicago-klezmer-ensemble/