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Jewish Music

The Klezmatics' performance of Aliza Greenblatt's work, set to music by Woody Guthrie

December 20, 2003

"Holy Ground: The Jewish Songs of Woody Guthrie," a Klezmatics performance at the 92nd Street Y, featured songs inspired or written by Guthrie's mother-in-law, Aliza Greenblatt.

Roberta Peters debuts at the Met

November 17, 1950

Soprano Roberta Peters debuted at the Metropolitan Opera when she replaced a colleague on six hours notice; she achieved the longest tenure of any Met soprano.

Award for Yiddish actress, Molly Picon

June 28, 1980

Yiddish superstar comedienne Molly Picon received the Creative Achievement Award of the Performing Arts Unit of B'nai B'rith.

Debbie Friedman plays Carnegie Hall

January 7, 1996

Debbie Friedman gave a sold out concert at Carnegie Hall, marking twenty-five years as one of the Jewish community's most well-known and influential contemporary musicians.

Johanna Spector

The only one of her immediate family to survive the Nazi holocaust, Johanna Spector decided in the aftermath of World War II to devote herself to the study of Jewish music. Since then, her ethnomusicological studies have documented the culture of some of the most exotic of Jewish communities.

Mathilde Schechter

Mathilde Roth Schechter, founder of the Women’s League For Conservative Judaism and the wife of Solomon Schechter, the well-known Jewish scholar, was born in Guttentag, a small town in Silesia, and orphaned at an early age.

Deborah 2: Midrash and Aggadah

Deborah is presented in the Rabbinic sources as a very talented woman. She was an upright judge, with the same prophetic ability as Samuel; [jwa_encyclopedia_glossary:424]Torah[/jwa_encyclopedia_glossary] scholars would come to learn from her. This ability was granted her as reward for her good deeds, namely, the preparation of wicks for the Tabernacle. She also encouraged her fellow Israelites to regularly attend the synagogue and Tabernacle, and thanks to her beneficial influence on her husband, he merited a portion in the World to Come. There is a tradition that presents Deborah as being guilty of the sin of pride, which led to her loss of the gift of prophecy, while the other traditions speak in her praise, and number her among the twenty-three Israelite women of outstanding righteousness ([jwa_encyclopedia_glossary:357]Midrash[/jwa_encyclopedia_glossary] Tadshe, Ozar ha-Midrashim [ed. Eisenstein], 474).

Naomi Shemer

Naomi Shemer’s musical skill was evident during her childhood, when she began to lead community singing on her kibbutz. In 1967 Shemer wrote “Jerusalem of Gold” for the annual song festival. Since the first time “Jerusalem of Gold” was performed at the Song Festival it has been considered the best-loved Israeli song of all time.

Shuly Nathan

Shuly Nathan’s clear and melodious voice represents some of the best qualities of true folk singing. Her varied repertoire consists not just of songs which happen to be fashionable at the moment but of carefully selected outstanding songs, both old and new.

Music: Palestine and Israel

The story of music in Israel is inextricably intertwined with the waves of immigration that broke upon its shores from 1882 on. Music in Israel is thus a giant mosaic of cultures, styles and musical traditions which in one way or another integrated into the music made in the country prior to their arrival.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Jewish Music." (Viewed on August 28, 2014) <http://jwa.org/topics/jewish-music>.

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