Community Blog L’Chaim: Bringing A Yiddish Fiddler to Life! Act II
In case you haven’t heard, figuring out how to sing together during a pandemic involving an airborne virus is quite a challenge. Our current technology—while awe-inspiring and nothing short of a lifeline these days—is no substitute for singing in person together.
But we are undeterred! Hebrew College’s Chamber Choir, Kol Arev, has moved online. Starting February 1st, we are presenting the second semester of our two-semester course called L’Chaim: Bringing A Yiddish Fiddler to Life! through Hebrew College Me’ah Select. Now anyone currently in need of a musical/theatrical experience can learn alongside Hebrew College student members of KolArev.
During our first semester, wonders emerged as we learned from Professor Jeremy Dauber about the life of Sholem Aleichem, Rabbi Jordan Schuster about the spiritual conundrums of Tevye and Professor Cindy Rosenthal about the Yiddish theater and Jewish identity on the American stage, to name only a few. For our final class of the last semester, Zalmen Mlotek, the Music Director of the Yiddish Fiddler, shared insights and anecdotes about how the production came into being.
And now…for Act II! If I Were An Actor: A Performer’s Perspective. What would it be like to be a cast member of the Yiddish Fiddler on the Roof?
This semester we will delve into the musical language of Fiddler, the Yiddish language, its history and dialects used in productions from the Second Avenue theaters to the recent production of the Yiddish Fiddler. We will speak with the Stage Manager of the Yiddish Fiddler production along with the Wardrobe Supervisor and the Audio Supervisor of the production. We will have an acting session on building a stage character taught by Cantor Lynn Torgove, and coaching of Yiddish diction and musical coaching of choral and solo numbers by Music Director and Conductor, Amy Lieberman. Like last semester, we will host numerous exciting guest speakers, including Hankus Netsky and Binyumen Schaechter.
As a special finale, members of the original cast of the Yiddish production of Fiddler on the Roof, will join us for a round table discussion, as we learn even more about this timeless, universally beloved musical and its Yiddish roots.
There will be ten 90-minute classes per semester on Mondays from 4:30-6pm starting Monday, February 1st, 2021. The first semester of this course is not required in order to take the second semester. To learn more or register, visit hebrewcollege.edu/programs/meah–select
Amy Lieberman is Head of Vocal Arts for the Hebrew College Cantorial Program. She conducts Hebrew College’s Kol Arev Chamber Choir, coaches art song, and teaches conducting. She holds degrees from Stanford University, Boston University, and Yale School of Music.
Cantor Lynn Torgove`12 has been teaching at Hebrew College since 2005 where she served as Head of Vocal Arts from 2012-2020 before becoming the program’s director in fall 2020. She has an international classical music career as a soloist in opera, contemporary music and early music and is a well-known soloist in Jewish music.