Klezmerpalooza 2019

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New England Conservatory of Music

Burnes Hall

255 St. Botolph Street

Boston, MA 02115

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Saturday & Sunday, March 9 & 10 - NEC's Contemporary Improvisation Department hosts "Klezmerpalooza - Forty Years of Klezmer at New England Conservatory!"

On Saturday March 9 and Sunday, March 10, 2019, New England Conservatory's Contemporary Improvisation Department will host "Klezmerpalooza," a collegiate klezmer music festival featuring NEC alumni who have become major leaders in the international resurgence of Eastern European Jewish culture, NEC's current Jewish music ensemble, the Ezekiel's Wheels Klezmer Band, and students from twelve college klezmer and Yiddish music ensembles. The event celebrates the fortieth anniversary of the first klezmer jam sessions at New England Conservatory that started the klezmer revival in New England, spearheaded the formation of the Klezmer Conservatory Band in 1980 and the Shirim Klezmer Orchestra in 1982, and helped launch the collegiate klezmer movement that has been at the forefront of the resurgence of Eastern European Jewish culture.

Festival events will include a Saturday evening concert (8 PM, Burnes Hall, NEC's SLPC building, 255 St. Botolph St, Boston), Sunday morning and afternoon workshops in klezmer, Hassidic, Yiddish, cantorial, and "Radical Jewish Culture," and a dance party featuring members of the visiting ensembles on Sunday afternoon. Sunday events will run from 9:30 to 5 in NEC's St. Botolph Building (entrance at 255 St. Botolph St.) with a one-hour lunch break from 12:30-1:30. Workshop presenters will include NEC's Contemporary Improvisation Department co-chair, Hankus Netsky, Klez-Kanada artistic director Michael Winograd, trombonist Rachel Lemisch, mandolinist, guitarist and cantor Jeff Warschauer, composer and singer Judith Berkson, saxophonist and singer Zachary Mayer and violinist Abigale Reisman. The primary organizers of the event are Dr. Hankus Netsky, founder and director of the Klezmer Conservatory Band and Nathaniel Seelen of Ezekiel's Wheels Klezmer Band.

All events are free. NEC is accessible by public transportation (Mass Ave. and St. Botolph stop on the #1 Bus, Symphony stop on the Green Line E train, or Mass Ave stop on the Orange Line).

Schedule:
Saturday, March 9, 2019. 8:00 pm.
Concert featuring Hankus Netsky and Eden MacAdam-Somer, Michael Winograd, Rachel Lemisch, Judith Berkson, Abigale Reisman, Zachary Mayer, and Ezekiel's Wheels Klezmer Band, and the New England Conservatory Jewish Music Ensemble.

Sunday, March 10, 2019. 9:30 - 5:00 pm.
Workshops led by Hankus Netsky, Jeff Warschauer, Michael Winograd, Rachel Lemisch, Judith Berkson, Nat Seelen, Abigale Reisman, and Zachary Mayer.


9:30 - 10:40 am

Cantorial Modality & Improvisation for Klezmer Instrumentalists and Yiddish Singers
Cantor Jeff Warschauer
Level: Advanced
Room 307 St. Botolph
A powerful way to develop new improvisational and compositional ideas. We will review the modal systems of cantorial and klezmer music, and then use some of the motivic and modal building blocks of the Bal-tefile (the lay prayer leader) as our point of departure.

Klezmer Ensemble Workshop
Michael Winograd
Level: Intermediate
Room 320 St. Botolph

Yiddish Song and Khazones
Judith Berkson
Level: All levels
Room 300 St. Botolph
This will be a two-part workshop where we will immerse ourselves in Khazones modes and improvise on them and then look at how cantorial styles influence Yiddish song in terms of vocal sound, dynamics, inflection, and ornamentation.

Klezmer Fiddle Workshop
Abigale Reisman
Level: Beginners
Room 309 St. Botolph
Open to all string players but with a focus on "fidl" repertoire and techniques.

"Middle-voice" Instrumental Workshop
Rachel Lemisch
Level: Intermediate to Advanced
Room 317 St. Botolph
This workshop is open to all trombones, saxes, cellos, ophicleides and anyone identifying as a tenor voice instrumentalist. When approaching a Klezmer tune, tenor instrumentalists have many options. Often, we have an opportunity to play melody on a section, and frequently we are playing bass lines. In this workshop we’ll learn a melody and the chords to a tune and then we’ll focus on developing the tools to create tenor lines that are interesting, different each time and compliment both the melody and the bass.

9:30 - 12 Noon

Creating Community Through Nigunim
Zach Mayer
SLPC Plimpton Shattuck Black Box Theatre
Nigunim are wordless melodies from that Hassidic tradition that carrya sense of community, meaning, and spiritual elevation. Some nigunim are centuries old and others are newly written for our generation.
All voices and levels of experience are welcome.



10:50 am - 12 Noon

Singing for Dancing (for Singers and Instrumentalists)
Cantor Jeff Warschauer
All Levels
Room 307 St. Botolph
Whether you are providing music for dancing, or dancing yourself, singing (with or without instruments) can provide all the music you need! Topics: How to sing nigunim and songs in ways that get people energized and moving, how to keep the music interesting and the energy flowing, rhythmic variation, keys and musical modes, and clapping, stomping and pounding (some do’s and don'ts).

Klezmer Ensemble Workshop
Michael Winograd
Level: Advanced
Room 320 St. Botolph

Avant Garde Techniques
Judith Berkson
Level: All levels
Room 300 St. Botolph
Compositional and Improvisational techniques for transforming klezmer, Yiddish, and cantorial music.

Klezmer Fiddle Workshop
Abigale Reisman
Level: Intermediate to Advanced
Room 309 St. Botolph
Open to all string players but with a focus on "fidl" repertoire and techniques.

Philadelphia Klezmer Ensemble Workshop
Rachel Lemisch
Level: All levels
Room 317 St. Botolph
This music was handed down to me and many others through trumpet player, Susan Watts- Lankin and the late, lovable drummer, Elaine Hoffman-Watts. The repertoire was written down by Elaine’s grandfather, who was a bugler in the Russian Army. We will learn 2 tunes by ear, the way I learned it from these great ladies, and then i will send you home with hard copies if interested.


Noon - 1:30 pm

Lunch



1:30 - 2:45 pm

Panel Discussion: 40 Years of Klezmer at NEC
Burnes Hall St. Botolph



3:00 - 5:00 pm

Student Recital and Dance Party
Join the university klezmer bands to dance the afternoon away in Burnes Hall!

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Artist bios


Hankus Netsky

A multi-instrumentalist, composer, and ethnomusicologist, Dr. Hankus Netsky is co-chair of New England Conservatory’s Contemporary Improvisation Department and founder and director of the Klezmer Conservatory Band, an internationally renowned Yiddish music ensemble. He has composed extensively for film, theater, and television, collaborated closely with such artists as Robin Williams, Joel Grey, Theodore Bikel, and Robert Brustein, and has produced numerous recordings, including ten by the Klezmer Conservatory Band. He also serves as musical director for Itzhak Perlman’s Jewish music projects, “In the Fiddler’s House,” “Eternal Echoes” and “Rejoice!” He was the recipient of the Yosl Mlotek award and a “Forward Fifty” award for his role in the resurgence of traditional Eastern European Jewish ethnic musical culture and the recipient of a New England Conservatory Outstanding Alumni award, along with the school’s Louis Krasner and Lawrence Lesser awards for excellence in teaching. He is a sessional lecturer at McGill University and has also taught at Hampshire College, Wesleyan University and Hebrew College. His essays on Jewish music have been published by the University of California Press, the University of Pennsylvania Press, the University of Scranton Press, Hips Roads, and the University Press of America, and Temple University Press published his book, “Klezmer, Music and Community in 20th Century Jewish Philadelphia” in 2015. Netsky is on the faculty of Silkroad’s Global Musician Workshop and performs regularly with violinist and vocalist Eden MacAdam-Somer, gospel singer Janice “Octavia” Allen, cantor George Mordecai, and in former U.S. Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky’s “Poem Jazz” project.


Jeff Warschauer

Cantor Jeff Warschauer is internationally renowned as one of the foremost klezmer mandolinists, as an innovator in the development of a klezmer guitar style, as an expressive Yiddish singer and as a skillful and inspirational educator. One half of the Strauss/Warschauer Duo, Jeff was a long-time member of the Klezmer Conservatory Band. He is on the faculty of Columbia University, and is a Founding Artistic Director and Senior Artistic Advisor of KlezKanada.

A graduate of the H.L. Miller Cantorial School at the Jewish Theological Seminary, Jeff is Cantor at The Jewish Center of Princeton, NJ, and has served congregations in New York, Connecticut, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Maine and Vermont.

Jeff speaks Yiddish, and has researched and collected Yiddish and Hebrew songs and instrumental melodies since the mid-1980s. He is a graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music, and has studied Jewish culture, languages, and religion at the Conservative Yeshiva, Oxford University, Columbia University, the University of Haifa and Tufts University. He has received numerous awards in Music, Community Activities, Judaica and Musicology, as well as the Amalgamated Bank Prize in Yiddish, a Massachusetts Folk Arts Fellowship, and the KlezKanada Distinguished Service Award.


www.cantorjeff.com and www.klezmerduo.com


Judith Berkson

Composer Judith Berkson uses voice along with digital and analog keyboards to create work that cross the boundaries of classical, electronic, and experimental music. She has collaborated with the Kronos Quartet, City Opera, Laurie Anderson and has worked with new music ensembles including Mivos Quartet, Wet Ink, Yarn/Wire, Experiments in Opera and the Boston Microtonal Society. As a vocalist, she has premiered works by Chaya Czernowin, Enno Poppe, Mick Barr, Joe Maneri, Rick Burkhardt, Gerard Pape, Alvin Lucier, Julia Werntz and Aleksandra Vrebalov. Her solo album Oylam on ECM Records was called "Standards and Schubert and liturgical music, swing and chilly silences, a beautiful Satie-like piece to open and close the record. I can't get enough of it” (New York Times). She has collaborated on Yiddish folk music with Theodore Bikel and has presented solo works at the Picasso Museum Malaga, Le Poisson Rouge, National Sawdust and the Jewish Museum. In 2012, she completed The Vienna Rite a chamber opera based on the friendship between composer Franz Schubert and the Viennese cantor Salomon Sulzer during the 19th century which premiered at Roulette Intermedium with costume and set design by Audrey Robinson. Her current work focuses on microtonal writing for acoustic instruments, especially the voice.


Zach Mayer

With over 7 million hits on YouTube for his “Subway Sax Battle,” Zach has performed with John Zorn, Hankus Netsky, Frank London, Michael Alpert, Joey Weisenberg, and Bobby McFerrin. He performs internationally with Zion80, a 10-piece Jewish Afrobeat band inspired by the music of Shlomo Carlebach, and his folk sextet, Night Tree, has toured internationally and has released two albums produced by Seamus Egan of SOLAS. He has been on the faculty at the Brandeis Institute of Music and Art, Laguardia Arts High School in Manhattan, and teaches at Jewish music festivals worldwide. Zach is the musical director of Kahal B’raira, a humanistic Jewish congregation in Cambridge. He received his Masters of Music from the New England Conservatory.


Nathaniel Seelen

Clarinetist Nat Seelen studied music theory, history, and composition at Brown University, where he received the Brand Musical Premium, the Buxtehude Premium for Musical Excellence, and departmental honors for his ethnomusicology thesis on klezmer music. With Ezekiel’s Wheels Klezmer Band, Nat won the Audience Prize and the City Winery Prize for Best Klezmer Ensemble at the International Jewish Music Festival, and has performed at venues from the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts to Rockport Music. An active composer and writer as well as a performer, Nat won first prize in the 2015 Klezmer Company Orchestra Composition Competition and a 2016 Iguana Music Fund grant to write a pedagogical text on klezmer music. Nat reviews concerts for AllAboutJazz and has performed on clarinet, saxophones, and percussion with Ezekiel’s Wheels Klezmer Band, OktoEcho, The Macrotones, The Du Bois Orchestra, The Longwood Symphony, The Mercury Symphony, and many others. In past lives, he has been a zookeeper, a comic book librarian, a management consultant, and an AP music theory teacher. He lives in Cambridge, MA with his wife.


Eden MacAdam-Somer

Eden MacAdam-Somer is one of the most exciting and versatile artists performing today. Hailed by the New York Times as reflecting "astonishing virtuosity and raw expression," her music transcends genre through soaring violin, vocals, and percussive dance, weaving in and out of the many cultures that have formed her experience. She is a full-time faculty member at New England Conservatory, where she teaches improvisation and serves as Co-Chair of the Department of Contemporary Improvisation, and she has traveled the world performing and teaching at the Afghanistan National Institute of Music and the Dundalk Institute of Technology, and a featured performer at theEastbourne and Beijing International Music Festivals. In addition to her work in Boston, Eden maintains an active international performance and recording career as a soloist and with such bands as Notorious Folk and the Klezmer Conservatory Band.


Rachel Lemisch

Rachel became interested in studying and performing Jewish music, after learning the pivotal role that the Lemisch family played in Klezmer music, from 19th century Romania to 1960s Philadelphia. She has performed with the Andalusian Orchestra, Delaware Symphony, Jerusalem International Symphony, New World Symphony, Boston Philharmonic and the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, and has accompanied artists as diverse as opera star Luciano Pavarotti and Orthodox Jewish superstar Yaakov Shwekey. Rachel performs internationally with the Gypsy/Balkan brass band Orkestra Severni and Shtreiml, an ensemble that fuses centuries-old Eastern-European and Ottoman music with jazz-rock sensibilities. Rachel is proud to be a member of SoulSongs, Inspiring Women of Klezmer, the eleven member all-female composers’ orchestra that premiered in Philadelphia in October 2018, with trumpetess and musical director Susan Watts-Lankin and staging and costumes by Jenny Romaine. Rachel’s film credits include Mona Lisa Smile, a 2003 film starring Julia Roberts. Rachel can be seen playing in an all-female big band in the “Spring Fling” scene.


Abigale Reisman

Abigale Reisman is a violinist, composer, improviser, and educator. She is a co-founder of Thread Ensemble, an experimental trio that creates music out of interactions with their audiences. She is a member of Tredici Bacci, which was featured in Rolling Stone's "10 Artists You Need to Know: November 2016". She is also a composer, arranger, and performer in the International Jewish Music Festival award winning band, Ezekiel's Wheels Klezmer Band. Abigale earned her Bachelor's degree at The Manhattan School of Music in Classical Violin Performance and went on to receive her Master's degree at The New England Conservatory in Contemporary Improvisation. She has toured the world performing klezmer, classical, pop, and experimental music. Abigale has had the privilege to share the stage with great musicians such as Father John Misty, David Krakauer, Amanda Palmer, Jeffery Zeigler, Sarah Jarosz, Hankus Netsky, Anthony Coleman, and Eminem.


Michael Winograd

Clarinetist Michael Winograd lives in Brooklyn, New York. He is one today's busiest and most notable Klezmer musicians. He has performed all over the world with such artists as Itzhak Perlman, Frank London, Socalled, Budowitz, Alicia Svigals, Daniel Kahn, Ayelet Gottleib and Judith Berkson. He performs regularly with his own groups, the Honorable Mentshn, Yiddish Art Trio and Sandaraa, a ground breaking cross-cultural collaboration with Pakistani super-star Zeb Bangash. In 2014 he co-founded the Yiddish New York festival and is currently the Artistic Director of KlezKanada. Michael is the recipient of the MAP fund, New York foundation for the Arts, Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation and Chamber Music America commissioning grants. He is thrilled to return to his alma mater, the New England Conservatory, as part of Klezmerpalooza 2019.

Date and Time

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New England Conservatory of Music

Burnes Hall

255 St. Botolph Street

Boston, MA 02115

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