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Students dancing in CotatiWhat a terrific weekend! On Friday evening, Gerry Tenney and the KlezCalifornia All-Stars presented a Klezmer Rock-and-Roll dance party at Sonoma Hillel to a very enthusiastic group of students from Sonoma State and Santa Rosa Junior College.

Then, on Sunday afternoon, we held KlezCalifornia's first Yiddish Culture Festival in Sonoma County, part of JCC Sonoma County's Simcha Sunday. Participants were primarily from Sonoma County, but also included people from as far away as Humboldt County. Performers in the main hall included Sharon Bernstein, the Harmonia Schvesters, and Jubilee Klezmer. Gerry Tenney led a Yiddish-oriented kids' program. More than a hundred people signed up for workshops in Yiddish singing, klezmer dancing and playing, Yiddish language and history. Veretski Pass (Cookie Segelstein, Joshua Horowitz, Stu Brotman) made their North Bay teaching debut, then performed a set and finally invited other musicians to join them in the band for the dance party. Those who stepped up included Paul Alexander (Petaluma), Peter Bonos (Oakland), Susan Diamond (San Mateo), Elaine Fingerett (Davis), Gus Garelick (Sonoma County), Moreen Libet (Davis), Mike Perlmutter (Berkeley), Tony Phillips (Berkeley), and Gerry Tenney (Oakland). We'll have lots of pictures for you in the April newsletter!

Gele Pages coverMeanwhile, we've updated and expanded the KlezCalifornia Gele* Pages(gele, pronounced with a hard "g" as in "gold," is Yiddish for yellow), our directory of Yiddish Culture Resources in the Bay Area (plus Santa Cruz, Davis and Sacramento). You can check out this fourth edition, now 41 pages, For your very own copy on bright yellow paper, send a check for $5 ($3 + $2 S/H) to KlezCalifornia, 1728 Allston Way, Berkeley 94703 or donate $5 (or more!) with a credit card HERE

Read below about many wonderful events in March, including great concerts beginning this coming weekend at the Jewish Music Festival.

Long-term calendar of Yiddish/klezmer events, classes and jams:     

If you're a band looking for a musician or vice versa, check out our listings below and

Check out our Facebook page here: Find us on Facebook . 
In This Issue
Yidisher Salon, Sunday, March 20
Afternoon of Song and Dance, Saturday, March 26
Beyond the Pale, Saturday & Sunday, March 26 & 27
Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire Commemoration, Sunday, March 27
Community Events
On the Web
Wanted! Musicians & Artists
Coming in April
Support KlezCalifornia
Yidisher Salons far Flisik Reders 

line drawing of people talkingSunday, March 20, Yidisher Salon far Flisik Redersfor fluent or native Yiddish speakers.We'll have a Purim Sudehand possibly a Purim Shpil. At a private home in El Cerrito. More info: flisiksalon[at]


Afternoon of Song and Dance 

Nigunim ChorusSaturday, March 26, 4:00pm, Afternoon of Song and Dance, 
presented by Achi Ben Shalom.

·  Nigunim Chorus performance: A tribute to singer/songwriter Debbie Friedman, and other gems in Yiddish, Ladino and Hebrew.

· Spring-time Sing-Along: Old favorites and a few less-familiar songs, with lyrics provided.

·  Israeli and klezmer folk dancing.

At JCC East Bay. Tickets: $10 at the door. Co-sponsored by KlezCalifornia. More info: 510.528.8872,mail[at]   

After the show walk to Saul's Deli (around the corner) for free dessert with purchase of an entree and presentation of a ticket to the Afternoon of Song and Dance.
Beyond the Pale in Berkeley and San Francisco

Beyond the PaleSaturday, March 26, 8:00pm & Sunday, March 27, 9:00pm.  

For over a decade, Toronto's Beyond the Pale has been making its distinctive brand of boundary-busting Eurofolk fusion. Mixing Klezmer, Balkan, and Romanian styles with an eclectic range of North American influences, the band members' diverse musical and cultural backgrounds intersect in a shared impulse to push the boundaries of contemporary acoustic roots music into new realms. 

Beyond the Pale has performed at festivals, theatres, and clubs across Canada, the U.S., and Europe, including NY's famed Carnegie Hall, and the Jewish Culture Festival in Krakow, Poland. The group is passing through the Bay Area on the way to its first tour to Australia.


Two performances, both co-sponsored by KlezCalifornia:   


Saturday, March 26, 8:00pm, At Subterranean Arthouse, Berkeley. $15 suggested donation. No-one turned away. Tickets at More info:


Sunday, March 27, 9:00pm.  At Amnesia Bar, San Francisco. Tickets: $10. More, 415.970.0012.

Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire Commemoration

Triangle demonstrationSunday, March 27, 1:00-3:00pm, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire: A Centennial Commemoration in Words and Music.

In this program commemorating the fire's centennial, Judy Baston will explore the Jewish responses to the tragedy, and Sonoma State University Professor Elaine Leeder will discuss the dramatic life of Rose Pesotta and the influence of other Jewish women, such as Rose Schneiderman, in the labor movement. Jill Tallmer will lead the audience in Yiddish labor songs of the era, including Dos Lid Funem Trayengl-Fayer (Ballad of the Triangle Fire) and Arbeter-Froyen(Working Women).  


At BJE Jewish Community Library, San Francisco. Co-sponsored by KlezCalifornia. No charge. More info:   

Community Events


See the many one-time events, classes, and projects below. This list of activities, and more, is available to you any time at


Tuesday, March 1, 12:00noon, "Singer on the Screen: The Image of Isaac Bashevis Singer in Film and Television (in Yiddish), by Jeffrey Shandler, Professor of Jewish Studies, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. At Stanford University, Building 360, Room 362H. More info:  


Thursday, March 3, 7:30pm, Song performance with Suska Varda. This performance includes Yiddish songs and melodies, works by inspirational female blues singers and writers, and tunes from the American Songbook by Jewish composers. At Oshman Family JCC, Palo Alto. Part of Single Arts Cafe series. Tickets: $10 JCC members and students/ $15 non-members 24 hours in advance. More info: 650.223.8605, dkeats[at]


Thursday, March 3, 8:30-9:45pm, first meeting of Klezmer Ensemble with Dave Rosenfeld. Eight-week class for those with a basic proficiency on their instrument who want to learn to play a new style of music. At Zambaleta, San Francisco, Registration: $160 for the series, $25 single session drop-in rate. More info:, 415.341.1333.


Friday, March 4, 7:00pm, Zoyres. At Subterranean Arthouse, Berkeley. Tickets: $20. More


Klezmer components of the Jewish Music Festival. Discounts on prices listed below for students, seniors, JCC East Bay members. More info:, 866.558.4253,info[at] 


Sunday, March 6, 2:00pm, Ger Mandolin Ensemble, 2011. At Freight & Salvage Coffee House, Berkeley. Tickets: $20 advance/$25.50 door. 


Sunday March 6, 8:00pm, Veretski Pass presents the Klezmer Shul and more. At Freight & Salvage Coffee House, Berkeley. Tickets: $18 advance/$22.50 door.  


Tuesday, March 8, 7:30pm, Noah Bendix-Balgley, Violin. At The Crowden School, Berkeley. Tickets: $15 advance/$20 door.  


Wednesday, March 9, 6:30pm, Noah Bendix-Balgley, Violin. At San Francisco Public Library. No charge. More info: 415.557.4400. 


Thursday, March 10, 2:00pm, Noah Bendix-Balgley, Violin. At JCC of the East Bay, Berkeley. Tickets: $12 advance/$15 door.  


Saturday, March 12, 8:00pm, David Buchbinder's Odessa/Havana. At Berkeley Repertory Theatre. Tickets: $18 advance/$22 door.  


Sunday, March 13, 4:00pm, Klezmer Dance Party with Erik Bendix. At JCC of the East Bay. Tickets: $40 advance/$15 door.  


Thursday, March 10, 8:00pm, David Buchbinder's Odessa/Havana. Presented by the Peninsula JCC at Club Fox in Redwood City. Tickets: $18 advance ($15 PJCC members/$20 door). More info: 650.378.2702,  


Friday, March 11, 8:00pm, Zoyres, At Red Poppy Arthouse, San Francisco. Sliding scale, $10-$20. More info:


Tuesday, March 15-April 19, 11:00am, Klezmer Music Class with Julie Egger of the Red Hot Chachkas. A six-week class for all ages. At Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse, Berkeley. Price: $120 until March 7, then $130. More info:,  510.644.2020.

On the Web 

Places to learn Yiddish: HERE, a new page on the KlezCalifornia website (compiled by Dorrit Geshuri and Jordan Kutzik).

Mlotek Yiddish songbooks on sale: The three most-used Yiddish songbooks, compiled by Chana and Yosl Mlotek, with lyrics in Yiddish and in transliteration, translation (full or summary), and music with chords, usually $17.95-$24.95, are now on sale for only $10 each at The Workmen's Circle' Get your very own copies of the red book, blue book, and purple book!

Russian website for Yiddish The February 9 entry is Michael Alpert singing Ikh bin geforn kayn Odes (I travelled to Odessa) (Thanks to Martin Schwartz).

Video clips in Yiddish, with English subtitles, on the Forverts "video channel" from the documentary series being done by Ross Perlin called A New York Jew in China: to Icek Mozes).

Difficult news about Dovid Katz's dismissal from his position as Yiddish professor at Vilnius University in Lithuania: (Thanks to Martin Schwartz).

Wanted! Musicians & Artists 


WANTED: YIDDISH LYRICIST: Klezmer musician (keyboard) and composer would like to collaborate with Yiddish-speaking lyricist. Contact Larry at lgarf[at]


Coming in April
Put these exciting events on your calendar now and check back in the April newsletter for more details. For events even further into the future, check out the long-term calendar of Yiddish/klezmer events

Tuesday, April 12, 7:00 pm, Archie Barkan: A History of the Catskills. Archie Barkan performed in the Catskills from 1957 until 1977.  He currently lectures on Yiddish literature for the Emeritus Department of Santa Monica College. His presentation of historical facts and personal anecdotes bring the Catskill experience to life. At BJE Jewish Community Library. Co-sponsored by KlezCalifornia. No charge. More info:   


Sunday, April 24, 7:00pm, Pamelakh Yidisher Salon. For intermediate speakers of Yiddish. At our gathering in February, we discussed Hirsh Glik's poetry and current events in Egypt. At this Salon we might discuss pesakh customs or the upcoming royal wedding! At a private home in the East Bay. No charge. More info: pamelakhsalon[at]

Support KlezCalifornia
With a gift to KlezCalifornia of any amount, you become a Contributing Member of KlezCalifornia and may post up to 100 words on the KlezCalifornia Honor Wall for one year. The Honor Wall includes messages in honor or in memory of anyone you choose, including about your personal Yiddish heritage. For a donation of at least $54, we also offer a DVD of the wonderful 80-minute film, Yiddish Theater: A Love Story. The DVD ordinarily sells for $24.99 + tax and shipping at

Make your tax-deductible donation by sending a check payable to KlezCalifornia at 1728 Allston Way, Berkeley 94703, or via credit card HERE. Your donations help us produce Yiddish cultural, musical and social events throughout the Bay Area. We depend on a wide spectrum of donations to keep our programs afloat. We thank you for your generosity and thoughtfulness.