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Music

Shari Lewis

Shari Lewis was a ventriloquist, symphony conductor, author, producer, and performer. She and her puppet friends won numerous awards. She was asked by former first ladies Nancy Reagan and Rosalyn Carter to be the sole performer at the annual White House Christmas party for the children of the Diplomatic Corps, and she emceed the annual White House Easter festival for the Bushes and the Clintons.

Sara Levi-Tanai

Sara Levi-Tanai was the founder, choreographer and artistic director of the Inbal Dance Theater. With an original style and multiple talents (music, art, theater, dance), she established a unique dance theater that combines the East and West, the early history of the Nation of Israel with the present, nascent Israel—thus creating a new language of movement in the world of dance that is called “the Inbal language.”

Ruth Laredo

Ruth Meckler, a piano prodigy from Michigan, became Ruth Laredo when she married violinist Jaime Laredo. A petite woman, she yielded to no one in the strength of her playing and her dedication to the instrument. “Ruth Laredo is about as big as a hummingbird. Her hands sometimes appear to hover over the keys, a blur to the eyes if not the ears. ... But what hummingbird ever packed such power?” wrote Donal Henahan in the New York Times.

Mariana Kroutoiarskaia

As a composer, music producer and supervisor, Mariana Kroutoiarskaia dedicated her entire life to music, film and television. Perhaps because she usually worked behind the scenes and was of small, delicate stature, she appears initially not to have been acknowledged by many people. But whoever came to know her better was usually overwhelmed by her energy, her love of life and her creative capacity.

Miriam Kressyn

Miriam Kressyn—of the Yiddish theater and film, songwriter, translator, recording star, radio announcer, historian of the Yiddish theater, news analyst, and teacher—left an indelible mark on Yiddish culture of the twentieth century.

Isa Kremer

Diva, folksinger, and citizen of the world, Isa Kremer was born in Belz, Bessarabia, on October 21, 1887, to Jacob and Anna (Rosenbluth) Kremer.

Ruth Kisch-Arendt

Ruth Kisch-Arendt, an Orthodox Jew who celebrated the musical and cultural traditions of German lieder, performed the songs of Schubert, Mendelssohn, Liszt, and Wagner before small-town German Jewish audiences during some of the most violent outbreaks of antisemitism in the 1930s. These performances stand as a poignant and ironic reminder of the inhumanity of the Holocaust.

Carole King

Carole King, a nice Jewish girl from Brooklyn, gave Aretha Franklin reason to croon “A Natural Woman,” inspired Little Eva to tell a generation about the latest dance craze in “The Loco-Motion,” and let James Taylor warm our hearts with “You’ve Got a Friend.”

Regina Kaplan

“Woman of valor” and “a tiny dynamo”—these phrases describe Regina Kaplan (nicknamed Kappy), nurse, teacher, hospital administrator, and health care innovator.

Esther Rachel Kaminska

In the first pages of her autobiography My Life, My Theater Ida Kaminska writes of her mother Esther Rachel, termed “the Jewish Eleonora Duse,” that she was educated by three forces: “the poverty she saw with her clever eyes, the suffering with which her great heart empathised, the injustice against which she was able to rebel. All became components of Esther Rachel Kaminska.”

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Music." (Viewed on April 23, 2017) <https://jwa.org/topics/music>.

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