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KlezCalifornia promotes and celebrates Yiddish culture in the San Francisco Bay Area

Pot of gold
Please consider making a gift today to KlezCalifornia, your last chance to qualify for a 2014 tax deduction. We add enjoyment to your life with Yiddish-inspired culture, including wonderful klezmer music, which makes us all feel so happy and energized! We rely on you to sustain everything we do. Whether you give $18 or $1800, every donation makes a difference. It's easy! Click HERE to donate with a credit card right now or mail a check to KlezCalifornia, 1728 Allston Way, Berkeley CA 94703.

Special note if you are 70 1/2 or older: Through December 31, you may donate to KlezCalifornia directly from an IRA without having the distribution added to your adjusted gross income and this will count towards your required minimum distribution for 2014. Call us for more information or consult your tax advisor.

Our newest "thank you" gift for donors of $54 or more is "Live & Be Well," a celebration of Yiddish culture in America," by Richard F. Shepard and Vicki Gold Levi. This fascinating 192-page book describes hundreds of significant people, places, events, and ideas, from A to Z, through which Yiddish culture has affected American Jewish life. Learn about all four "thank you" gifts HERE


KlezCalifornia offers a fond farewell to KlezKamp, the week-long immersion in Yiddish culture produced by Living Traditions for the past thirty years in New York's Catskill Mountains. An August article in the "Forward" about KlezKamp's final year (and mentioning KlezCalifornia!) is HERE
 and a late-December video HERE
. We thank Living Traditions for inspiring us to create KlezCalifornia and wish them future successes.


Here are more faces from KlezCalifornia's November Yiddish Culture Festival in Palo Alto at the Oshman Family Jewish Community Center:

Photos by Lea Delson,
. See all three hundred fifty Festival photos HERE
-- Submissions for the February newsletter by January 23 HERE
-- KlezCalifornia Geleh* Pages (*yellow), directory of Bay Area resources: Geleh Pages

-- Online sources of Yiddish-inspired culture: KlezCal on-line resources

-- Klezmer musicians looking for others:  KlezCal want ads

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In This Issue
Chasing Portraits, Thursday, January 8
Beginners' Yiddish, Fridays, January 16 & 30
Flisik Yidisheh Salon, Sunday, January 25
Reading Yiddish Texts, beginning January 26
Intermediate Yiddish Class, beginning January 28
Community Events
On the Web
Farshidns (This 'n That)
Coming in February
Honor Wall
Support KlezCalifornia
Chasing Portraits, Thursday, January 8


Thursday, January 8, 7:00pm, Chasing Portraits: A Great-granddaughter's Search for Her Lost Art Legacy, an illustrated presentation with Elizabeth Rynecki.
Moshe Rynecki (1881-1943) was an artist living in Poland at the outbreak of World War II. Concerned about preserving his paintings and sculptures, many of which depicted Jewish life in Warsaw between the wars, he distributed and hid roughly eight hundred paintings with gentile friends in and around the city. He perished in the Majdanek concentration camp.   


After the War, his family recovered approximately one hundred and twenty hidden paintings. For more than twenty years, his great-granddaughter Elizabeth Rynecki has sought more paintings and details about her great-grandfather's lost work. Her presentation will include new information uncovered during her trip to Poland in the fall of 2014. Co-presented by KlezCalifornia. No charge. More .

At Jewish Community Library, SAN FRANCISCO 

Beginners' Yiddish, Fridays, January 16 & 30


Fridays, January 16 & 303:00-5:00pm, Beginners' Yiddish class, with Rochelle Goldman. Presented by Workmen's Circle/Arbeter Ring and KlezCalifornia. No charge. More info: 650.577.1531,roshnman[at]

At Civic Center Branch, San Francisco Public Library, SAN FRANCISCO

Flisik Yidisheh Salon, Sunday, January 25


SundayJanuary 25, KlezCalifornia Flisik Yidisheh SalonFor fluent Yiddish speakers. Mir veln iberzetsn shprikhverter fun Yidish tsu English, derclaren unzer nayeh yur (2015) resolutsia, un dertseln vi azoy tsu makhn etvas batamt tsu esn. No charge. More info: 415.789.7679, flisik[at] 
At a private home in SAN FRANCISCO   


Reading Yiddish Texts, Mondays, starting January 26


Mondays, January 26 - April 277:15-9:15pm, Reading Yiddish Texts, led by Yael Chaver. Presented by Lehrhaus Judaica. Co-sponsored by KlezCalifornia. Tuition: $210 / $195 JCC members. More info: 510.845.6420HERE




Intermediate Yiddish, Wednesdays, starting January 28 


oy veyWednesdays, January 28 - April 17:00-8:30pm. Intermediate Yiddish, taught by Danny Luzon. Presented by Lehrhaus Judaica. Co-sponsored by KlezCalifornia. Tuition: $100 early registration, $120 after January 12. More info: 510.845.6420HERE .  


Community Events 


Saturday, January 3, 8:00-10:00pm, Veretski Pass and Yiddish Arts Trio (Patrick Farrell, Benjy Fox-Rosen, Michael Winograd) House Concert. Yiddish Arts Trio is on a CD release tour. Please bring a drink or snack to share. Street parking. Suggested donation: $20. Seating very limited and always sells out. More info: 415.254.8005DelilahLewis151[at] 

At private home in Lower Bernal Heights, SAN FRANCISCO


Sunday, January 4, 11:00am-1:00pm, Klezmer Brunch with Yiddish Arts Trio. Free with Museum admission; brunch specials for purchase. More info: 415.755.7881HERE .

At Contemporary Jewish Museum, SAN FRANCISCO


Sunday, January 4, 4:00pm, Yiddish Arts Trio House Concert. Tickets: $20. More info: herrmann[at]

At a private home in SANTA CRUZ


Monday, January 5, 6:00-8:00pm, Saul Goodman's Klezmer Band. Part of Klezmer Mondays at Saul's. Entertainment free with minimum $10 purchase. More info: 510.848.3354HERE . 

At Saul's Restaurant and Deli, BERKELEY  


Wednesday, January 7, 8:00pm, Yiddish Arts Trio House Concert. Suggested donation: $20. Reserve before January 4 to be guaranteed a seat. More info and  reservations:  concerts[at]

At a private home in MOUNTAIN VIEW


Sunday, January 11, 9:00-11:00am, Discussion of stories by Mendele Mocher S'forim (S.Y. Abramovitsch) and Sholem Alecheim (S. Rabinovitch), with Rabbi Janet Marder and Dr. Joyce Penn Moser. Part of five-session Explorations in Modern Jewish Literature. See also second session,February 8, below, in Coming in February. Suggested donation: $36 for the series (includes bagels, cream cheese, juice and coffee). More info: 650.493.4661HERE 

At Congregation Beth Am, LOS ALTOS HILLS

Sunday, January 18, 3:00pm, Susan RoAne, The Mingling Maven. An interactive workshop for
anyone who has to mix and mingle in a room full of strangers. Find out why the author included a Yiddish glossary in her book, "How To Work A Room." Presented by Lehrhaus Judaica. No charge.  More info: 415.845.6420HERE
At Afikomen Judaica, BERKELEY


Sunday, January 18, 6:00-8:00pm, Klezmer Creek. Free with minimum $5 purchase. More info: 707.544.2491, 

At Gaia's Garden, SANTA ROSA

Saturday, January 24, 7:30pm, Jewish and Global Soul Music with Cantor Richard Kaplan. Songs of exultation, radical immanence, lament and deep ecumenism, music both tribally-rooted and world-centric, sung in Hebrew, Yiddish, Aramaic, English, Hindi, a bisl Latin or with no words at all. Light refreshments. Presented by the Jewish Music Festival. Tickets: $25. More info: 800.838.3006,HERE
At a private home in BERKELEY

Wednesday, January 28, 7:00-9:00pm, Ellis Island Old World Folk Band. More info: 510.849.1100, 

At Le Bateau Ivre Café/Restaurant, BERKELEY

Wednesday, January 28, Klezmer Night, 7:00pm performance by Klezmer Creek, jam at7:30pm. Free with minimum $5 purchase. More info: 707.544.2491,
At Gaia's Garden, SANTA ROSA 
On the Web


Han Kim, age 17, plays klezmer piece for clarinet and orchestra with Changwon Philharmonic Orchestra, Seoul, Korea, April 2013, HERE . (Thanks to Rosie Kaplan)  

Promo for "King of the Egg Cream," a new old-time radio play about the sweet, syrupy egg cream racket of 1920s New York City, presented by Tablet HERE . (Thanks to Jeanette Lewicki)  

Farshidns (This 'n That)


Yiddish keyboard HERE (thanks to Talia Shaham)   

Available: Clarinet/mandolin/flute player as a sub or regular. Hoping to connect with currently
gigging groups. More info: Moish Estrin, mikelmaestro[at]


Wanted: Accordionist who sings and perhaps plays guitar and/or piano. Should be familiar with Yiddish and Hebrew and be interested in working up some traditional and original music as duo and eventually more players for paying gigs. More info: Moish Estrin, mikelmaestro[at]   


Wanted: Klezmer musicians in Mendocino and Sonoma Counties. Klezmer-loving family on California's North Coast wants to know who is playing klezmer in Sonoma and Mendocino Counties so we can discuss options for mutual learning, fun and support. Contact Jennifer atrefinnej[at]  


Proverb of the month: A half-truth is a whole lie (A halber emes iz a gantser lign) (Thanks to Gale Kissin). 

Coming in February

Sunday, February 8, 9:00-11:00am, Discussion of stories by Zalman Shneour and Edna Ferber, with Rabbi Janet Marder and Dr. Joyce Penn Moser. Part of five-session Explorations in Modern Jewish Literature. See also the first session, January 11, above. Suggested donation: $36 for the series (includes bagels, cream cheese, juice and coffee). More info: 650.493.4661, HERE .

At Congregation Beth Am, LOS ALTOS HILLS.   


Thursday, February 12, 6:00-7:30pm, The Holocaust in Every Tongue: Which "Night" is Right: Yiddish, French or English and the Politics of Translation, presented by Naomi Seidman. Presented by Lehrhaus Judaica in conjunction with the exhibition Alive! A la vie! on the Children of Buchenwald. More info: 510.845.6420, HERE .  

At San Francisco Public Library, SAN FRANCISCO


Saturday, February 21, 8:00 pm, To Everything There Is A Season: Cantor Sharon Bernstein with Carolyn Reiser, Karen Segal, and Judy Graboyes. Songs about day and night, weather, and food. Tickets: $10 members / $15 non-members. More info: 415.861.6932,

At Congregation Sha'ar Zahav, SAN FRANCISCO


Sunday, February 22, 1:00pm, Family History of Klezmer Music, with Gerry Tenney. Part of regular meeting of San Francisco Jewish Genealogical Society. No charge. More info: HERE .  

At Oakland Family History Center, OAKLAND


Sunday, February 22nd3:00pm, A Song Tribute to the Jewish Chicken Ranchers of Petaluma, with the San Francisco Jewish Folk Chorus.



Di Megileh of Itzik Manger, Thursday, February 26Saturday, February 28; Sunday, March 1;Monday, March 2 (matinee); Tuesday, March 3. The New Yiddish Theater company reprises last year's sellout run of the hit Yiddish musical (fully supertitled in English).  



Thursday, February 26 - Sunday, May 24, Letters to Afar (exhibit). Budapest-based artist Péter Forgács revisits amateur movies made by Jewish immigrants in the U.S. who visited their hometowns in Poland in the 1920-30s. Decades later, Forgács rewrites these "visual postcards" including music written by The Klezmatics. Tickets: Included in museum admission. More info: 415.655.7800, HERE 

At Contemporary Jewish Museum, SAN FRANCISCO 

Honor Wall 

New Honor Wall postings this month:

Judy Kunofsky: 
In memory of my parents, Pauline and Israel Kunofsky. They ensured I learned Yiddish by sending me to the Workmen's Circle/Arbeter Ring for four years, but then didn't speak to me in Yiddish. I will never know why. 

Mitchell Shandling: Yes, KlezCalifornia so remarkably promotes our enjoyment of Yiddish-inspired culture. As well, my support commemorates my maternal bobeh/zeydeh, Keyleh and Leyzer Milkman, who provided the music of their heymish Litvak loshn in my childhood. I came into this world hearing these strong gentle Jews sing, but even more speak this beloved language which affords such rich pleasure and learning. As I learn to make my own music in mameloshn, I realize it could never be foreign, as I always remember their music. Zol s'lebn lebedig! 

SupportKlezCaliforniaSupport KlezCalifornia
With a gift of any amount to KlezCalifornia, you become a Contributing Member and you may post a message of up to 100 words on our web  Honor Wall
 for one year. This is a fine way to honor a loved one or teacher or to write about your own Yiddish heritage.

Chai imageDonors of $54 (3 chai/khay) or more may choose one of four "thank you" gifts: NEW: "Live & Be Well, a celebration of Yiddish culture in America," by Richard F. Shepard and Vicki Gold Levi. This fascinating 192-page book describes hundreds of significant people, places, events, and ideas, from A to Z, through which Yiddish culture has affected American Jewish life. Also available: * "The OyWay," a 115-page book by Harvey Gotliffe, which helps you learn Yiddish expressions while engaging in meditative exercise. See
. * DVD of the wonderful 80-minute "Yiddish Theater: A Love Story" (
). * Eight beautiful, brightly-colored, 5"x7" music-themed greeting cards designed by Sonoma County artist Nina Bonos (see HERE

Your donations help KlezCalifornia keep Bay Area Yiddish culture and community vibrant and thriving. Plus, you'll be invited to two private KlezCalifornia parties each year. Make your tax-deductible donation via credit card  HERE
 or with a check to KlezCalifornia at 1728 Allston Way, Berkeley 94703. A sheynem dank! Thank you very much!