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Temple Israel hosts musical scholars-in-residence

Amy Olson (left) and Christina Crowder will be the featured guests for the Second Annual Ilene M. Levin Scholars-In-Residence program, which will feature klezmer, Jewish folk music of Eastern Europe. (Photo submitted)

Musicians Amy Olson and Christina Crowder will be the featured guests for the Second Annual Ilene M. Levin Scholars-In-Residence program at Temple Israel. They are performers and scholars of klezmer music (Jewish folk music of Eastern Europe) as well as related musical genres. In addition to their independent musical projects, they have been performing together since 2005. Their residency will include both public performances and workshops for interested local musicians.

Amy was the vocalist with the Twin Cities based klezmer band “The Prairie Heym Klezmorim” from 1989 to 2005. She has been a featured guest artist with the International Association of Yiddish Clubs and made her NYC Cabaret debut at the Cornelia Street Café in Greenwich Village in 2013. Dubbed “The Diva of the Yeshiva,” Amy is also executive director of University of Rhode Island Hillel and former executive director of University of Minnesota Hillel.

Christina is based in New Haven where she is active as a teacher and performer. She plays in the Alexander Fiterstein Trio, the Wholesale Klezmer Band, and her own Chamber Klezmer Trio Bivolița as well as with the renowned klezmorim Margot Leverett, Alicia Svigals and Walter Zev Feldman. She has led klezmer accordion and ensemble performance workshops in Paris, Albuquerque and Asheville.

This event is made possible by a donation of Steve Goldfine in memory of his late wife Ilene Levin. It follows last year’s Ilene M. Levin Scholars-in-Residence series that featured Rabbis Jonathan Rubenstein and Linda Motzkin (“Bread and Torah”).

If you go Thursday, May 29 7-8:30 p.m. Concurrent workshops: “Thinking like a Klezmer: Texture, Ornamentation, and Elaboration in Ashkenazic Jewish Music” (for instrumentalists of intermediate level and up) led by Christina Crowder; and “Yay Dai Dai!: Yiddish Songs and Shabbes Tunes,” a sing-along session (for singers of all abilities) taught and led by Amy Olson. Free.

Friday, May 30 5:30 p.m. Shabbat evening service featuring Amy Olson and Christina Crowder. Amy will also speak on the topic of Jewish life on the university campus.

6:30 p.m. Free community Shabbat dinner sponsored by Steve Goldfine. Dessert is sponsored by Judy Gordon in memory of Gary Gordon. Amy will lead and teach traditional Jewish after-dinner songs and blessings.

Saturday, May 31 10 a.m. Shabbat morning service featuring Amy Olson and Christina Crowder. A free Kiddush lunch follows the service at which Amy will lead and teach traditional Jewish songs and blessings to follow the meal.

7:30 p.m. Free Concert of Yiddish/Broadway/Israeli music by Amy Olson (vocalist) and Christina Crowder (accordion).

Sunday, June 1 10:30 a.m. Free brunch sponsored by Steve Goldfine featuring lecture/demonstration by Christina Crowder on “Klezmer in America 2014: Revitalizing the ’Revival’ for the 21st Century.”

Teri Cadeau

Teri Cadeau is a reporter for the Budgeteer.

(218) 720-4176
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