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YiddishDo you actually speak Yiddish?  Or at least understand it well enough to follow a conversation, listen to a story told in Yiddish, or laugh at the punch line of a Yiddish joke before it's translated?  If yes, and you've been living in the Bay Area for a while, then you probably think you're an endangered species!  Well, the San Francisco Yiddish Club has a surprise for you!
In early 2006, Joseph Greenberg (aka Iosif Grinberg), an indefatigable and multilingual Russian émigré, decided that the Bay Area needed a nexus for people like you to exercise and revive their Yiddish, so he founded the San Francisco Yiddish Club.  It now meets monthly, at 2:00pm, on the third Sunday of each month.
There are typically 50-60 attendees at each meeting. (That's not a typo! Yes, 50-60!)  The "program" is tightly planned in advance, and usually centers on several presentations prepared by club members, e.g., a talk on something topical of Jewish or Yiddish interest, a reading (in the original Yiddish) of a short piece from a well known Yiddish writer, the telling of Yiddish jokes or reading humorous stories, and perhaps a musical presentation by one of the many talented club members.  Of course, there's always plenty of socializing too.
The majority of attendees are Russian speakers, but there's a vocal minority who don't understand Russian and make sure that mameloshn remains the meeting's lingua franca.  (Likewise, the Russian speakers don't allow English to hijack the proceedings either.)  A special treat is hearing the multiplicity of Yiddish accents that are represented.  "Litvak" vs. "Galitsyaner" barely scratches the surface here, so you can be sure no one will be "correcting" your accent.

Next Meeting:  Sunday, February 17th, 2:00PM
JCC of San Francisco - Room 206
3200 California St., 94118

Call Joseph Greenberg at 415-387-4742 so he can make sure there will be enough seats!

The Dreams & Prayers of Isaac the Blind                        ..... TONIGHT!

The Bridge Players, led by violinist Randall Weiss, return to perform a major work by contemporary Argentine composer Osvaldo Golijov. Thursday, January 24, 7:30 P.M. -- FREE
1835 Ellis Street, San Francisco, CA 94115
(Free parking in the building on Pierce between Ellis and Eddy)
Composed in 1994, this epic composition for klezmer clarinet and string quartet is written in three movements, each reflecting a different language of the Jewish people: ancient Aramaic, the Yiddish of exile, and liturgical Hebrew. Osvaldo Golijov, born in 1960, grew up in an Eastern European Jewish household in La Plata, Argentina, where he was surrounded by chamber music, Jewish liturgical and klezmer music, and the tango nuevo of Astor Piazzolla.
Program made possible, in part, by Mike Zimmerman, and co-sponsored by KlezCalifornia.
Welcome 2008 Brunch and Klezmer Concert              ..... January 27th
Contra Costa JCC
The Contra Costa JCC has planned a special festive brunch, and klezmer concert (with dancing) presented by KlezCalifornia, for Sunday, Jan. 27th.
Brunch will be served between 11:00am and 12:30pm, and followed by the concert with Gerry Tenney leading the KlezCalifornia All Stars.
Brunch menu includes champagne, orange juice, lox, assorted bagels, cream cheese, noodle kugel, tomatoes, onions, capers, tuna salad, vegetable frittata, cake, coffee, and tea.  Over 250 people attended a similar event in Berkeley during December ... and had a blast!

Cost is $22 for JCC members, and $27 for non-members.

Reservation are a must, and should be phoned in by Thursday, 1/24, to 925-938-7800 x244.
The JCC is located at 2071 Tice Valley Blvd., Walnut Creek, (outside the Rossmoor gate)
Additional Events of Interest
The Klezmakers
The KLEZMAKERS in concert!
Saturday, Feb. 2nd, 7:30pm
The mid-peninsula's very own (eight piece!) klezmer band will perform in Santa Clara.  Come for a rollicking evening of dance tunes, Yiddish theater songs, some Israeli folk music, and the debut of a few of their original pieces.  You can even enjoy a light dinner during the show (sandwiches, soups, pasta, etc.)
Mission City Coffee Roasting Company
2221 The Alameda, Santa Clara, 95050
admission: $8,  Ph: 408-261-2221
Klezmer WorkshopsKlezmer Ensemble Workshops
If you want to learn to play klezmer in groups, and already know how to play your instrument, there are upcoming opportunities to do so at several bay area locations.
David Rosenfeld, of Kugelplex (mandolin/violin), is a multi-instrumentalist, ethnomusicologist, and composer who has been playing stringed instruments for over 25 years, and teaching for almost as long.   He currently has a workshop in progress at the Albert L. Schultz JCC in Palo Alto, and another one planned there for April-May. Additional workshops will be held at the JCC East Bay on dates to be determined.
To find out more, and assure that you receive notice of upcoming workshops, contact David Rosenfeld at 415-407-7162, or [email protected].
AnnetteAnnette Brodovsky
Memorial Benefit Concert
This all-Klezmer Program Features:
The Davis Klezmer Orchestra
Freilachmakers Klezmer String Band
The Red Hot Chachkas
Sunday, February 10, 2008, 3:00pm-5:00pm
Congregation Bet Haverim/Jewish Fellowship of Davis, Sanctuary
1715 Anderson Road, Davis, CA 95616 - Ph: 530-758-0842
Suggested Donation: $20.
Annette (Liora) Brodovsky, just 33 years old, was a talented klezmer violinist, composer, Sacramento violin teacher and teacher of Jewish tradition, as well as a devoted wife and mother of two young daughters. Annette was tragically killed by a drunk driver, April 2, 2007, just before the beginning of Passover.  Kind, totally selfless, and generous beyond measure, her passion for klezmer music -- and all music -- was something she shared with us all, young and old. Now, three Northern California klezmer bands are offering their music to benefit Annette's family.
Organizers are asking for community members to become sponsors of the benefit concert.  All donations are tax-deductible. Sponsorships are available at the $50, $100, $500, $1000, and $2,500 levels.  Checks should be made payable to Congregation Bet Haverim with a notation on the check that the donation is for the Annette Brodovsky fund. Please mail your sponsorship checks to Congregation Bet Haverim, 1715 Anderson Road, Davis, CA  95616, Attn: Annette Brodovsky Fund.
For more information on sponsorship and the concert, please contact Elaine Fingerett at [email protected] or 530-756-7474.