What does an authentic Yiddish singing style sound like? It all depends on the singer’s age — and where they grew up.
Chana Mlotek, an archivist and scholar, reestablished Yiddish folksong research after the Holocaust. She was once called the ‘Sherlock Holmes of Yiddish Song.’
Radio personality Isaiah Sheffer died today in New York at age 76. Sheffer was co-founder and artistic director of the performing art center Symphony Space on the upper west side of Manhattan, and was known nationally as the long time host of the public radio series “Selected Shorts,” which began in 1985. Sheffer started Symphony Space in 1978 with the conductor Alan Miller, and turned a run down theater into one of the most active cultural centers in New York. Sheffer stepped down from the post in 2009.
In Yiddish there are some professions or positions that use the diminutive form of a name as a sign of popular endearment. These include Hasidic rebbes, cantors, thieves and actors.
The legendary Vilna partisan Vitka Kempner Kovner died on February 15. She was credited with carrying out the first act of anti-Nazi resistance in the ghetto.
One of the major artists of the American Yiddish cultural world and an innovator in the art of Jewish papercutting, Tsirl Waletzky, died on December 8 at the age of 90.