Klezmer Violinist Steven Greenman to offer workshops, culminating in public performance
Deadline for signup: Jan 25

"With his violin and a keen sense of musical history, Steven Greenman of Cleveland brings the klezmer music of his Jewish ancestors to the stages of modern America. He has been called 'the extraordinary klezmer violinist' by a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reviewer. 'Particularly impressive' declared the Washington Post." These are quotes from Plain Dealer's William F. Miller in an article headlined "Violinist hears history in Jewish folk music."

Klezmer violinist Steven Greenman will present a series of six intensive workshops/rehearsals in Klezmer style ornamentation and repertoire for all string players (violins, violas, cellos, basses, guitars, mandolins, cimbaloms and hammer-dulcimers) who have serious technical knowledge of their instruments and the ability to read music. This is the first in the new Louis E. Emsheimer Artist In Residence Program of the Cleveland Hillel Foundation, established by Marcia Emsheimer in memory of her late husband, Louis E. Emsheimer who was active in the Cleveland Jewish community.

The primary focus will be on the artistic Klezmer repertoire that was originally and traditionally performed for listening at the wedding table and will also include some of the dance repertoire as well. Participants will learn traditional Klezmer style, phrasing and ornamentation as well as the accompanimental patterns and overall ensemble playing. The historical aspect of the music as well as East European Jewish dance and vocal traditions will also be included. This series will culminate in a public lecture/presentation of the music led by Steven Greenman followed by a concert of the repertoire covered in the workshops featuring the participants.

Professional musicians, students and faculty from the Cleveland Institute of Music, Case Western Reserve University and the University Circle community are especially welcome to participate. No previous knowledge of Klezmer music is required. Repertoire will be taught by ear and with music.

All interested string performers must register for the workshops no later than Jan. 25th, 2002 by contacting Steven Greenman at (216) 231-5467 or by e-mailing him. Performers must be willing to commit to at least five of the six workshops/rehearsals in addition to the dress rehearsal and concert as repertoire and knowledge of the musical style covered will be cumulative over the series of the workshops.

In the case of those interested who are unable to attend a majority of the workshops/ rehearsals please contact Steven Greenman and arrangements will be made with instructions and parts to be sent. Workshops/rehearsal will take place in the auditorium of the Cleveland Hillel Foundation on Interfaith Plaza in University Circle, 11291 Euclid Avenue. Dates and times of the workshops/rehearsals and lecture/presentation/performance are:

Monday, February 11, 2002, 7:00-9:00 PM
Tuesday, February 12, 2002, 7:00-9:00 PM
Wednesday, February 13, 2002, 7:00-9:00 PM
Monday, February 18, 2002, 7:00-9:00 PM
Tuesday, February 19, 2002, 7:00-9:00 PM
Wednesday, February 20, 2002, 7:00-9:00 PM
Dress Rehearsal: Sunday, February 24, 2002, 10:00 AM-Noon
Lecture/Presentation by Steven Greenman: Sunday, February 24, 2002, 2:00-3:30 PM
Performance: Sunday, February 24, 2002, 4:00-5:00 PM

Currently Klezmer music (history, repertoire and ensemble performing classes) are taught around the United State, although not in Cleveland. Klezmer is a popular "world music" which is appreciated by audiences of many nationalities. According to Steven Greenman, "Klezmer includes music for dancing, elaborate and virtuosic listening music, concert music, delicate&soulful&mournful and tragic music, religious and sacred music and exuberant music."

Steven Greenman is one of the few practitioners of traditional East European Jewish klezmer violin. He is one of the first American born klezmer violinists to create a program and performance style based entirely on the repertoire of European klezmer violin music. Together with Walter Zev Feldman, Steven co-founded the Khevrisa ensemble in 1998. He has performed internationally with such notable klezmer ensembles as the Klezmatics, Budowitz and Kapelye. Steven received both his Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees in Violin Performance from the Cleveland Institute of Music. He is a regular guest soloist with the Cleveland Pops Orchestra and has participated in the national Repertory Orchestra, the National Orchestral Institute and the American Institute of Musical Studies in Austria.

This new program is coordinated by the Cleveland Hillel Foundation for the University Circle community, in particular targeting Jewish and non-Jewish students with interest in expanding their musical repertoire. The goals of the Artist in Residence program are:

  • To expose college students of all faiths to Jewish thought, philosophy, ritual, history, liturgy and culture

  • To explore Judaism through the media of the arts, music and dance

  • To offer students the opportunity to create art, music, and dance under the guidance of masters in each field

  • To enhance Cleveland Hillel Foundation's engagement and education of Jewish students in their heritage

  • To develop on-going partnerships with appropriate academic departments of Case Western Reserve University as well as the Cleveland Institute of Art and the Cleveland Institute of Music

For more information about the Louis E. Emsheimer Memorial Artist-in-Residence Program, please call Rabbi Jonathan Freirich, Cleveland Hillel Metro Director at 216-231-0040, ext. 22. To register or for special arrangements to participate, please call Steven Greenman at 216-231-5467 or e-mail him.