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ApplesWith the new moon of Elul, KlezCalifornia's Board of DIrectors wishes you and your loved ones a sweet New Year! Anticipating Rosheshoneh at month's end, a gut, zisn yor!  


This is the Jewish time for resolving to make the new year better than the past. Keep your eye out for a special message encouraging you to help KlezCalifornia during the coming year!


Klez-X, from JCC catalogueDon't miss KlezCalifornia's TENTH Yiddish Culture Festival, at JCC San Francisco, President's Day Weekend, February 18-20, 2012! Headlining will be Klez-X, with Daniel Hoffman returning to the Bay Area from Israel, and bringing together Sheldon Brown, Alan Hall, Jeanette Lewicki, Richard Saunders, Stephen Saxon, and Charlie Seavey. Expect a hot klezmer concert on Saturday, February 18, 8:00pm, followed by a klezmer dance party. The best concert tickets are available right now at

. Mark your calendar! Invite friends and family to visit for the latest, great weekend celebrating Yiddish in the Bay Area.Lomir aleh freylekh zayn! (Let's have a wonderful time!) 


Now, help us plan the Festival:  


We encourage you to email info[at] to suggest Festival workshops. Here are workshops we offered at our February 2010 Festival in Palo Alto:For all: Jewish Music Beyond Jewish Life, Yiddish Literature in Translation (2010: Yiddish Epitaphs, Monologues), History of Yiddish Language and Literature, Acting, Papercutting, Amulets, Klezmer/Balkan/Roma Connections, 110 Yiddish Words the Average Puerto Rican New Yorker Knows and You Should be Ashamed if You Don't, World of Our Great-Grandparents, Shared Melodic Repertory of the Yiddish and Greek Worlds, Growing Up With Yiddish, Yiddish Words and Expressions for the 21st Century, Yiddish Film. For singers: Yiddish Love Songs, Yiddish Song Rarities, Master Classes, Sing-Alongs. For dancers: Learn Klezmer Dances, How to Lead Klezmer Dance, Dance Parties. For instrumentalists: Master Classes, Ensembles, Make Them Dance, Klezmer Style/Technique: Melody or Accompaniment, Composing and Improvising, and Klezmer Theory. Want the same? Different workshops? Send us your ideas! 




Calendar of upcoming Yiddish-inspired events:

Looking for a klezmer to join your band or vice versa? Check out our listings at
Like us on Facebook: Find us on Facebook
In This Issue
KlezCalifornia at the Solano Stroll
Yiddish Sing-Along
Yiddish Conversation Salon, Sunday, September 25
Community Events
On the Web
Farshidns (This 'n That)
Coming in October
Honor Wall
Support KlezCalifornia
KlezCalifornia at the Solano Stroll


Solano Stroll posterSunday, September 11, KlezCalifornia booth at the Solano Stroll, 10:00am-6:00pm, on mile-long Solano Avenue from the Alameda in Berkeley to San Pablo Avenue. Our booth is on the gas(street) of Jewish organizations between Ventura and Tulare Avenues and we'll be playing our favorite klezmer CDs. Also at the Stroll, Achi Ben Shalom's Nigunim Chorus and Adama will perform a variety of songs, including some in Yiddish. No charge. More

, 510.527.5358, info[at]


We need help at our booth. Interested in talking about Yiddish culture and KlezCalifornia with strollers, or just giving other booth staff a break? Contact info[at] or 415.789.7679. Bonus: A place to sit down (or leave your packages). 

Yiddish Sing-Alongs

Songbook cover, 3rd editionDATE CHANGED TO OCTOBER 30, 2:00-4:00pm, KlezCalifornia Yiddish Sing-Along led by Achi Ben Shalom, at a private home in San Francisco.  

Originally scheduled for September 18, the San Francisco celebration of the "KlezCalifornia Yiddish Songbook," third edition, has been changed to Sunday, October 30, 2:00-4:00pm. Reservations and more info: 415.789.7679, info[at]  


For your very own, nicely-printed copy of the Songbook, send a donation of $5 ($3 + S/H) to KlezCalifornia, 1728 Allston Way, Berkeley CA 94703 or use a credit card HERE

, or take one home from a sing-along for a $3 donation. Lomir aleh zingn!  


Yiddish Conversation Salon  


line drawing of people talkingSunday, September 25, 2:00-4:00pm, KlezCaliforniaFlisik Yidisher Salon, at a private home in San Francisco. Shmoozing and noshing in Yiddish for fluent and native Yiddish speakers. No charge. More info: Rosie at rosiekap[at], 415.789.7679, with your name and phone number. Indicate whether you are new to the Flisik Salons.



Community Events 

Here are more one-time events (and series) you may find of interest. A list of activities is available to you any time at



Thursday, September 1 and Friday, September 2, 2:30pm, 5:00pm, 7:00pm, Sholem Aleichem: Laughing in the Darkness at the Landmark Opera Plaza Cinema, San Francisco. The highly recommended 93-minute film was part of this year's Francisco Jewish Film Festival and co-presented by KlezCalifornia. Tickets: $10 general, $6 or $8 bargain matinees, $8 seniors/children/students. More info: 415.267.4893,


Thursday, September 8, 8:00pm, "Hardly Strictly Klezmer" with Red Hot Chachkas and Vocolot,Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse, Berkeley. Tickets: $20.50 advance/ $22.50 at door. Co-presented by the Jewish Music Festival. More info:

, 510.644.2020.

Starting Friday, September 9, 10:10am-12:00noon, Seminar on Klezmer Music, a five-week class taught by Julie Egger at College of Marin, Kentfield Campus. This class is for anyone interested in playing, singing or understanding klezmer music. Fee: $69.00. Class repeats beginning October 28. More info: julieegger[at]

Friday, September 9, 7:30-10:00pm, Klezmer Brass performs outdoors at Off the Grid, Fort Mason, San Francisco. Street food fair with 30+ food trucks and tents. No charge for the music. More

Starting Monday, September 12, 1:00-3:00pm, Conversational Yiddish, a six-week class for beginners is taught by Julie Egger at the College of Marin. Learn the alef beys, how to read and write, basic vocabulary and how to construct basic sentences. Songs will help with comprehension. Fee: $64.00. Class repeats beginning October 24. More info: More info: julieegger[at],


Starting Monday, September 12, 7:30pm in Berkeley, Tuesday, September 13 in San Francisco, Nigunim Chorus led by Achi Ben Shalom. Repertoire includes Yiddish songs. Fee: $150 for the 12-week session. More info:



Starting Monday, September 12, 7:15-9:15pm. Reading Yiddish Texts, with Yael Chaver, presented by Lehrhaus Judaica at the JCC East Bay. Tuition: $180 for the public, $150 if registered by September 1. More info:



Starting Thursday, September 15, 7:00-9:00pm, Introductory Yiddish, with Jon Levitow, presented by Lehrhaus Judaica at Congregation Kol Emeth in Palo Alto. No background required. Ten sessions, until December 15. Tuition: $200 for the public, $180 for Kol Emeth members. More info:

, 510.845.6420. 


Saturday, September 17, 7:00-9:00 pm, Ellis Island Old World Folk Band performs at High Street Station in Alameda. Klezmer, Yiddish vocals, American tunes from vaudeville to swing, and tunes from Eastern Europe, Greece, Russia, Italy and Mexico. Cover charge $5-$15, sliding scale. More info about the band: 510.433.2900,

; about the venue: 510.995.8049,


Beginning Monday, September 26, 3:15-4:45pm, Introduction to Yiddish, taught by Jon Levitow. This regular Stanford University class on Mondays and Wednesdays is open to auditors. Auditors are expected to complete regular classwork and Stanford students like to go fast! Class time may change. More info: jnlvtw[at]


September 27 - October 11, 11:00am-4:00pm, Tuesdays through Sundays. Every Protection: Exploring Pregnancy and Childbirth in the Jewish Pale of Settlement. Exhibit at the Eloise Pickard Smith Gallery, Cowell College, University of California at Santa Cruz. Nathaniel Deutsch (UCSC Professor of Literature and History, and Co-Director of the Center for Jewish Studies) has written a new book about Sh. An-sky's massive 1914 ethnographic questionnaire, which documented Yiddish culture in the Pale of Settlement. The exhibit presents text by Prof. Deutsch on An-sky's findings regarding Jewish customs and beliefs about pregnancy and childbirth, together with mono print collages and constructions on the same themes by Massachusetts-based artist Debra Olin. Opening reception Tuesday, September 27, 4:00-7:00pm. More info:





On the Web 


"Yiddish is Alive and Well" by KlezCalifornia member Harvey Gotliffe in "The Huffington Post" HERE



About Yiddish singer (and KlezCalifornia member) Jackie Griffin, from August 4 "J Newsweekly"

 (Thanks to Talia Shaham). 


Di Mameh is Gegangen in Mark Arayn (Mother Went to Market) with animation by Arnie Lipsky, music by Kapelye and vocals by Michael Alpert:

(Thanks to Karen K. Bergen and Talia Shaham).  


Yiddish in Jewish Day Schools from "The Forward":

  (Thanks to Howard Freedman). 
Farshidns (This 'n That)

Proverb of the month:  A worm in the horseradish thinks there's no sweeter place to be (A vorem ligt in khreyn un meynt as s'iz keyn zisers nito). Send your favorite Yiddish proverb, in transliteration with translation, to news[at]

We organized a meeting in Los Angeles on August 18 attended by more than 21 people eager to encourage more klezmer music and dancing in Southern California! Yiddishkayt will include klezmer events in their monthly newsletter's community calendar (sign up at
), California Institute for Yiddish Culture & Language is organizing a Fall 2012 conference on klezmer music at U.C.L.A., and Arbeter Ring (Workmen's Circle) is calling (and hosting) the next meeting of this group. People volunteered to compile a list of klezmer bands and teachers for the Yiddishkayt website, organize a Hanukkah klezmer jam and Purim klezmer event, and approach organizers of large community get-togethers about including klezmer performances, dance lessons, and workshops for instrumentalists. To become involved, contact Ruth Judkowitz at mspetridish[at]

"The Klezmer Shul," a new CD by Veretski Pass, is hot off the burners. Cookie Segelstein, Joshua Horowitz, and Stu Brotman developed this piece under KlezCalifornia's auspices and premiered it February 2010 at our Yiddish Culture Festival in Palo Alto. The intent of this work is "to give the listener an emotional experience comparable to attending a religious service. In reinterpreting the traditional Jewish liturgy, (they) drew from the musical vocabularies of the many peoples among whom klezmer musicians have lived and worked." Purchase info:

"A Woman of Heart," a new novel by Marcy Alancraig, who lives in Aptos (Santa Cruz County) and teaches English at Cabrillo College. The left-wing politics of Petaluma's thriving community of Jewish chicken ranchers of the 1920's is recreated as Rheabie Slominski tells the "true" story of her life to granddaughter Shoshana. Shoshana struggles to believe her grandmother's strange tale. As she discovers her own abilities to see ghosts and "Guardians of the land," Shoshana also uncovers deeper family secrets about pogroms, alcoholism, adultery, sexual orientation, trust and friendship. Yiddish terms are sprinkled throughout the story and a glossary is provided. The book is for sale at Mazo Publishers
 and your favorite bookseller.

Coming in October

Put these exciting events on your calendar now and check the October newsletter for more details. Also check out KlezCalifornia's long-term calendar at

Sunday, October 2, 7:00-9:00pm, KlezCalifornia East Bay Pamelakh Yidisher Salon. At a private home. No charge. More info: 415.789.7679, pamelakh[at]

Thursday, October 6, 7:30pm, Moscow's Klezmasters in "Razzle Dazzle Yiddish" at Oshman Family JCC, Palo Alto. Tickets: 24 hours in advance: $20 JCC members, $25 non-members; $30 at the door, space permitting. More info: 650.223.8621,

Beginning Monday, October 10, 7:00-9:00pm, Yiddish Reading Group. Led by Dr. Jon Levitow for those who already read Yiddish, at Congregation Kol Emeth, Palo Alto. The start date may change. More info: jnlvtw[at]  

Friday, October 14, 9:00pm, Red Hot Chachkas and Cradle Duende at Subterranean Arthouse, Berkeley. Tickets: $15-$30 suggested donation. No one turned away for lack of funds. More info:

Sunday, October 30, 2:00-4:00pm, KlezCalifornia Yiddish Sing-Along, led by Achi Ben Shalom,at a private home in San Francisco. Reservations and more info: 415.789.7679,  info[at] .

Honor Wall

New Honor Wall
 posting this month: 

Harvey Gotliffe: In honor of Philip "Fishl" Kutner (b. 1926). His single-page newsletter on Yiddish in the San Francisco Bay Area became "Der Bay," an international, 16-page monthly that covers happenings in Yiddish around the world. His web site,
, provides a compendium of links into everything Yiddish from activities, teachers, words, publications, to organizations, including the International Association of Yiddish Clubs. Fishl serves on its board, helps plan its annual conferences, and is its webmaster. He's a zamler (collector) for the National Yiddish Book Center, and wrote "Hrabina of Hunterdon," tales about his mother on the family's Yiddish-speaking New Jersey farm. Fishl is a truementsh. 

Support KlezCalifornia

Any gift makes you a Contributing Member of KlezCalifornia and you may post on our web Honor Wall
 (up to 100 words) for one year. This is an appropriate way to honor a loved one or teacher or to write about your own Yiddish heritage. 

Chai imageWe hope Contributing Members can give $54 (3 chai) or more. In appreciation for contributions at this level, we offer you a choice of gifts: A DVD of the wonderful 80-minute film, "Yiddish Theater: A Love Story" (
 or eight beautiful, brightly-colored, 5"x7" music-themed greeting cards designed by Sonoma County Jewish artist Nina Bonos (see the cards HERE

Make your tax-deductible donation via credit card HERE
 or with a check to KlezCalifornia at 1728 Allston Way, Berkeley 94703. Your donations help KlezCalifornia keep Bay Area Yiddish culture and community vibrant and thriving.