We’re a little over a week away from the global Yiddish extravaganza of the season – the Star-Studded Folksbiene Chanukah Spectacular – and already thousands of people plan to attend!
Here is a sneak peek of the opening number, Around the World in Yiddish. Packed with performers joining us from the far reaches of the globe, it’s a vivid reflection of how musicians have been keeping Yiddish alive by sharing old favorites and creating new compositions, continuing tradition while adapting to different cultures, geographies, and times.
“Yiddish is an international language that ties Jews together. It is a unifying force even for those who don’t speak it themselves,” National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene Artistic Director Zalmen Mlotek says. “We have an emotional attachment to it because we’ve heard it from our parents, our grandparents, and our teachers. As you’ll see in our opening number, Yiddish music is a universal experience packed with energy and emotion.”
Folksbiene’s trip around the world is a veritable ver iz ver (who’s who) of Yiddish and klezmer music. Fans in America may not be familiar with all of these accomplished musicians, and because now is no time to travel the world to discover their new sounds and voices, our Chanukah gift to the Folksbiene mishpacha is to bring the world to you.
The performers in the opening number are paragons of Yiddish music – artists you’ll want to hear again and again (and one day hopefully see in person!). Until then, we’ll tell you a little bit about them before you see them on December 8.