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Unknown Musicians of a Wandering Race » Mosaic
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Unknown Musicians of a Wandering Race

A remarkable concert reintroduces three Jewish composers who fled fascist Europe to America, where two of them pioneered a new art form—the symphonic film score.

The ARC Ensemble, who performed in Pro Musica Hebraica’s “Before The Night: Jewish Classical Masterpieces of Pre-1933 Europe” at the Kennedy Center in May 2015. The ARC Ensemble via Facebook.

The ARC Ensemble, who performed in Pro Musica Hebraica’s “Before The Night: Jewish Classical Masterpieces of Pre-1933 Europe” at the Kennedy Center in May 2015. The ARC Ensemble via Facebook.

Observation
May 21 2015
About the author

Edward Rothstein is Critic at Large at the Wall Street Journal. His essays in Mosaic include “The Problem with Jewish Museums” and “Jerusalem Syndrome at the Met.”


In his program notes to the Pro Musica Hebraica concert at the Kennedy Center in Washington earlier this month, the historian James Loeffler points out that in 1927—just before the period in which the music on the program was written—a Russian-born musician by the name of Gdal Saleski published a “classic, biographical lexicon” under the title Famous Musicians of a Wandering Race.

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More about: Arts & Culture, Classical music, Film, History & Ideas, Jewish music