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The Yiddish Art Song - Creating and Curating for a New Generation
Learn how a new generation of composers and performers are breathing new life into Yiddish Music. Join Pulitzer finalist Alex Weiser and Samantha Stinson for a conversation about the rediscovery and reinvention of a trove of music that continues to resonate across a wide spectrum of listeners.

Oct 6, 2020 12:30 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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Alex Weiser
Director of Public Programs @YIVO Institute for Jewish Research
Alex Weiser creates cosmopolitan music combining a historical perspective with a forward-looking creativity. Weiser’s debut album, and all the days were purple, was named a 2020 Pulitzer Prize Finalist for Music. Released by Cantaloupe Music in April 2019, the album includes songs in Yiddish and English and has been praised as “ravishing” (The New Yorker). Weiser recently completed State of the Jews, an opera composed with librettist Ben Kaplan. Hailed as “stunning, heavenly, marvelous” by Israeli National Public Radio, the opera is based on the life of Theodor Herzl. After preview performances at the 14th Street Y, it awaits a premiere production. An advocate for contemporary classical music, Weiser co-founded and directs Kettle Corn New Music, and was for nearly five years a director of the MATA Festival, “the city’s leading showcase for vital new music by emerging composers” (The New Yorker). Weiser is now the Director of Public Programs at the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research.
Dr. Samantha Stinson
Director of Education, Ritual, and Music @Congregation Beth El - Fairfield
Samantha Stinson is a performer, educator, and lecturer whose career has taken her internationally. She earned a Doctorate of Musical Arts degree from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, lecturing on the genre of Yiddish Art Song and compiling a Yiddish Song anthology for her dissertation. Samantha has performed with opera companies, theaters, and symphonies in the U.S. and the UK. She has taught on faculty at Edge Hill University in the UK; St. Lawrence University; Northern Kentucky University; and the Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam. She served as cantorial soloiste in Cincinnati, and as lay rabbinate leader, b’nai-mitzvah tutor, and cantorial soloist for Temple Beth El in Potsdam, N.Y. Samantha holds additional degrees in music from the Chicago College of Performing Arts and SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Music. She currently serves as director of Education, Ritual, and Music at Congregation Beth El in Fairfield, CT.