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A Concert of Talented Men

Last year Yiddish Soul was the highlight of the Folksbiene’s Kulturfest, a festival that featured hundreds of performances over eight packed days and attracted tens of thousands of attendees. At the time, I wrote in the Yiddish Forward that this high-profile concert of Hasidic and cantorial music, presented as part of SummerStage in Central Park, was the festival’s most important program. I believed this to be the case not only because it was one of the festival’s strongest concerts but also because it attracted an unusually diverse audience of Hasidic, secular and Modern Orthodox Jews who came to enjoy an evening of Yiddish music. I argued that the concert could help the fortunes of Yiddish among Modern Orthodox Jews who generally see the language as old-fashioned and irrelevant at best.

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