European Klezmer: Under the Canopy of Heaven, NYC, Sun, Oct 6, 2002

Khevrisa will appear on:

Sunday, October 6, 7pm
Symphony Space, Broadway at 95th Street, NYC
$21; seniors $16; students $15
Box office (212) 864-5400
Info/charges (212) 545-7536

Khevrisa, which was described in Dirty Linen as the new klezmer "supergroup," will provide the New York audience with the opportunity to hear Eastern European wedding music that is rarely heard today. Comprised of some of the most respected exponents of Jewish traditional music, Khevrisa features Steven Greenman (violin), Zev Feldman (cimbal -hammer dulcimer), Michael Alpert (badkhn, violin) and Stuart Brotman (contrabass).

In Europe Jewish weddings took place over several days and featured many musical forms, from the meditative melodies of the first days and the morning of the wedding, to the carnivalesque dances of the wedding feast. Traditionally the music was performed by the klezmorim under the supervision of the badkhn, a combination clown and master of ceremonies. Khevrisa is the only ensemble in America to perform these klezmer wedding melodies, taken from manuscripts and from the last European masters of the tradition, using the original instrumentation.

Steven Greenman is one of the few practioners of traditional Eastern European klezmer violin. He is the first American-born klezmer musician to create a program and performance style based entirely on the repertoire of European klezmer violin music. In 1998 he and Zev Feldman founded Khevrisa, an ensemble dedicated to preserving and reconstructing Eastern European klezmer music through research, concerts, workshops and lectures. He has also performed internationally with such notable klezmer ensembles as Budowitz, the Klezmatics, the Flying Bulgar Klezmer Band, and Kapelye.

Zev Feldman, a leading researcher in both Ottoman Turkish and Jewish music, developed a passion for klezmer from his Moldavian-born father. He and Andy Statman studied with Dave Tarras during the 1970s and were two of the creators of the klezmer revival. Their recording, Jewish Klezmer Music (Shanachie), became a classic of the revival. Feldman was responsible for reintroducing the cimbal into klezmer music.

Michael Alpert has performed with Brave Old World, one of the leading international ensembles performing traditional and modern Yiddish music. He is a leading performer of Yiddish song. An important link between Old World Jewish musicians and the klezmer revival, Alpert had studied the fiddle repertoire of the late Leon Schwartz of Bucovina. He is a former researcher at New York's YIVO Institute for Jewish Research and has conducted extensive research of traditional Jewish music and dance.

Stuart Brotman is the leading bassist of the klezmer revival. He performs with Brave Old World, and has toured and recorded with Canned Heat, Kaleidsocope, Geoff and Maria Muldaur, and Ry Cooder. Leader of the groundbreaking Bay Area klezmer string ensemble Finef and a founding member of Los Angeles's Ellis Island Band, he also toured with the NEA-funded Yiddisher Caravan.

This program is made possible in part with public support from the New York State Council on the Arts, a State agency, and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs. Additional support is provided by the Howard Bayne Fund.