Sunday, August 23, 2009

A Memorable Concert at Yad Vashem

Last night, Maestro Giora Feidman charmed those gathered in the Valley of Communities at Yad Vashem with a very special concert. His masterclass students from around the world joined him for a concert of “Jewish Soul Music” (Klezmer), captivating an eclectic group.
The concert opened with the clear notes of Feidman’s clarinet approaching slowly from out of the Valley. As he slowly walked through the audience and approached the stage, the powerful notes emerging from his (translucent!) clarinet pervaded the air. The towering walls of the Valley, etched with the names of Jewish communities destroyed during the Holocaust, made a perfect and imposing setting - the music soaring out across the hills on the cool air of the Jerusalem summer evening.

The young and not so young musicians, ranging from talented Israeli high school students to seasoned professionals from abroad, clearly put their own “soul” into the music. They played solos, they played together in different combinations, but they never failed to move us with the music.
Feidman, an energetic and colorful performer par excellence, treated us to a truly exceptional performance, inviting us to join him. Soon everyone was tapping their feet, clapping their hands or singing along. Singing and humming along, I think we all filled the Valley with music and life. My 12-year, his grandparents and I were equally enthralled.
As we listened to the music, here in Jerusalem, we were struck by the living memorial to the Jewish world destroyed during the Shoah, and the celebration of Jewish life that continues.

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