92Y Explores the Cultural Legacy of Terezín Ghetto: Music & More
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The last date listed for Will to Create, Will to Live: The Culture of Terezín was Monday January 30, 2012 / 7:30pm (Discussion: Terezin Between Celebration and Investigation).
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I was recently in Prague, so learned about Terezin at the Jewish Museum there and had high hopes for this event. Though there were initial technical difficulties and the room was a bit makeshift, the film itself was a worthy tribute to the many...continued
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The music was wonderful and moving to listen to. The only thing missing was a narrative of some kind introducing the program and explaining a little background of the music. The musicians were visibly moved by the music and exuded enthusiasm.
The Nazi transition camp/ghetto Terezín [pronounced tehr-eh-ZEEN], also known as Theresienstadt [pronounced tehr-AY-zee-enn-shtadt], was established in 1941 to hold Jews from occupied Bohemia* (now part of the Czech Republic) before their deportation to the death camps. It is widely known as the site of the staged performances that the Nazis used to deceive Red Cross visitors in 1944 and subsequently exploited for a propaganda film.
But that is only one chapter in a much larger story.
From Jan 9 to Feb 16, 92nd Street Y presents a multi-disciplinary series that explores the cultural significance of Terezín, where 144,000 Jews were sent and 88,000 deported to extermination camps; the series illuminates their art and the legacy of their spirit, which endure.
In exploring the range of Terezín life, 92Y’s Will to Create, Will to Live: The Culture of Terezín draws from 92Y’s myriad specialties. The cornerstone of the program is a four-concert series with the Nash Ensemble of London, baritone Wolfgang Holzmair and pianists Shai Wosner and Russell Ryan performing music primarily played and written in Terezín itself.
January 17, 2012 at 8:00pm: Nash Ensemble & Wolfgang Holzmair, baritone
The British chamber group, Nash Ensemble of London, joins Austrian baritone Wolfgang Holzmair and American pianist Russell Ryan in a concert of works written in Terezín. The composers include the well-remembered (Klein, Ullmann), nearly forgotten (Taube, Skutecky) and an anonymous writer of “Terezín Lied” for Voice and Piano.
January 18, 2012 at 8:00pm: The Story of Terezín*
Through documentary film clips and stories from survivors of Terezín itself, delve into one of the most moving and inspiring stories of the Holocaust era—not only its artistic output but the work and play, romance, routines and family life that made up the lives of its citizens, lives overshadowed by the always-present threat of transport to Auschwitz. Moderated by Ruth Franklin, this panel discussion includes the filmmaker Simon Broughton and his views while making the BBC Documentary The Music of Terezín, and with two survivors of Terezín.
January 19, 2012 at 7:00pm: Raising Kids in Tough Times
Children from cultures around the world and throughout history have demonstrated remarkable resilience in the face of extraordinary circumstances – and this sense of strength was particularly evident in the children of Terezin. Renowned child-rearing expert Dr. Ron Taffel invites parents and educators to take an in-depth look at children’s innate sense of spirit in contemporary life and how to respect and foster this quality in a range of different settings.
*January 19, 2012 at 8:00pm: Czech Connections with the Nash Ensemble, Wolfgang Holzmair and Russell Ryan *
Cross-generational musical Czech connections are the focus of this concert with the Nash Ensemble of London, baritone Wolfgang Holzmair and pianist Russell Ryan. It opens with Smetana’s own piano four-hand arrangement of his Overture to The Bartered Bride and features works of Suk, Haas, Krása, Ullmann and Schulhoff.
January 21, 2012 at 6:00pm: Film screening and discussion — *_The Music of Terezín*_
Simon Broughton introduces the first public screening in North America of his celebrated 1992 documentary film on the music created in Terezín. Through performances of works by Terezín composers and interviews with surviving musicians, actors, artists and writers, the film depicts artistic creativity at the highest level under the direst of circumstances. A co-production between the BBC and Czech TV, the film won Best Documentary prize at MIDEM in Cannes in 1993.
January 21, 2012 at 8:00pm: The Music of Prague with Nash Ensemble
The Nash Ensemble celebrates the music of Prague before the war, with a string quartet by Janácek and selections by Krása and Haas composed between 1923 and 1935. Through such works, Krása and Haas established themselves as major musical figures by the time they arrived at Terezín.
January 22, 2012 at 7:30pm: When Adversity Inspires Creativity
From the Spanish artist Francisco Goya’s exposure of the “Disasters of War” in 85 prints after the Napoleonic invasions, to the South African William Kentridge’s conflagration of animated drawing and storytelling to probe his conflicted identity as white man and artist during Apartheid and after, artists through the centuries have turned to art-making in times of war, conflict, oppression and trauma.
Join a global panel of artists formed by dire events in far-flung corners of the globe who honor, replay, deride or exorcise their histories through their work. How important is the art making itself to their emotional or even physical survival? How did they come to recognize the roots of their subjects and evolve their form of expression? What role does the art-making play in their lives? Why do some artists find it necessary constantly to revisit the injury and others to probe, dissect or transcend it. What is the role of humor in art rooted in an oppressive past? The artists share their stories, screen their work and address the provocative questions, in particular: can art make a difference?
January 23, 2012 at 6:00pm: Film Screening and Discussion — *_The Voices of the Children*_
Filmmaker and Terezín survivor Zuzana Justmen introduces her award-winning documentary which uses interviews, diaries and drawings to tell the story of three people who were imprisoned as children in Terezín. Broadcast on PBS, the film won a 1999 Emmy Award and was honored at the 1998 Chicago International Film Festival. Q&A with the director follows the screening, with a complimentary glass of wine.
January 23, 2012 at 8:00pm: The Cornet Rilke with Wolfgang Holmair and Shai Wosner, piano
Inspired by the story of a 17th-century relative who died in combat, Rilke wrote The Lay of the Love and Death of Cornet Christopher Rilke in 1899. It became a best-seller in Germany, and in the World Wars to come, young men would carry the book into battle with them. As part of 92Y’s festival on the art of Terezín, we present a rare performance of composer Viktor Ullmann’s setting of The Cornet for speaker and piano, which he wrote from within that Nazi holding camp before being deported to Auschwitz. The program will also feature works by Debussy and Mahler.
January 30, 2012 at 7:30pm: Terezín — Between Celebration and Investigation
Over the last decade, it has become a kind of convention to celebrate the spirit and artistic life of Terezín. How does that art reveal what really happened there? How do we distinguish the myths, memories and legend from the realities? 92Y Director of Tisch Center for the Arts Hanna Arie-Gaifman and NYU Department of Music Chair Michael Beckerman lead other guests in a frank and challenging discussion about the dual function of the art of Terezín: to document a people’s existence and also to preserve their humanity.