Sun Nov 07 2021


Pacific Time
2:00 pm - 3:00 pm


Co-presented by KlezCalifornia

The Lost Soviet Yiddish Songs of the Holocaust, with Anna Shternshis

The Lost Soviet Yiddish Songs of the Holocaust, with Anna Shternshis

Sunday, November 7, 2pm Pacific Time (5pm Eastern).

In this free presentation, taught over Zoom for the Jewish Community Library, Anna Shternshis will discuss the rediscovery of songs composed during the 1940s by Soviet Jews, long silenced by both Hitler and Stalin.

During World War II, Kiev-based ethnomusicologist Moisei Beregovski and his colleagues collected songs that were being composed in Yiddish by Soviet Jews in response to the War and the German occupation of Ukraine. In 1950, before he had been able to publish these materials, Beregovski was arrested and imprisoned for Jewish nationalism during one of Stalin’s crackdowns, and all of his materials were thought lost. But this collection of songs in fact survived, languishing in obscurity until it was uncovered by librarians in the basement of the Vernadsky Ukrainian National Library in Kiev. Alerted to their discovery, Anna Shternshis spent years studying this unique trove of materials. She will tell the story behind this unique collection and offer an analysis of selected songs, which include some of the first eyewitness accounts of the Holocaust in the Soviet Union.

More information about the subject and speaker plus registration at Jewish Community Library.