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

We are excited to tell you about our special new events coming up this Fall!  First, we are very pleased to announce a new series of klezmer workshops and jams at three locations around the Bay Area! Next will be our new Cabarets and Yiddish Culture Festivalwhich will be presented at two different locations. Finally,our semi-annual party will be held on September 18. Details for these KlezCalifornia events are described below, so please scroll down and keep reading! The Fall schedule of Yiddish language classes around the Bay is listed below as well.


Program details announced in the next newsletter! 

Cabaret by the Bay 
Comedy, Yiddish song, storytelling, and music.
At the Osher Marin JCC, SAN RAFAEL 

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 41:00-7:00pm
KlezCalifornia Yiddish Culture Festival
1:00pm Workshops: instrumental, singing, dancing, acting, lectures, kids/families.
  5:00pm Cabaret by the Bay followed by dance party.
              At the JCC East Bay, BERKELEY  

Pot of goldKlezCalifornia very much appreciates the generous support we have received for programs this Fall and in the coming year from the following funders:
  • Natan Fund and Marinus and Minna B. Koster Fund for Tam:Tastes of Yiddish Culture for Kids & Teens for the 2016-2017 school year.
  • Alliance for California Traditional Arts and Chaim Schwartz Foundation for this Fall's Cabarets and Yiddish Culture Festival.
  • Libitzky Family FoundationBernard Osher Jewish Philanthropies Foundation of the Jewish Community Federation and Endowment Fund, and Goldman Sachs Philanthropy Fund for general support of KlezCalifornia.
  • Frederick J. Isaac Philanthropic Fund of the Jewish Community Foundation of the East Bay for developing and implementing a Communications Plan.
To these funders, and to all individuals who contribute and/or volunteer, a sheynem dank!Thank you very much! Your gifts make KlezCalifornia possible!


-- Submissions
 for the October newsletter by September 26

-- KlezCalifornia Geleh* Pages
 (*yellow), directory of Bay Area resources
-- Online sources
 of Yiddish-inspired culture
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Flisik Yidish SalonSunday, September 11

Sunday, September 11, 12:00noon - 2:00pm, KlezCalifornia Flisik Yidish Salon.
 For fluent Yiddish speakers. Mir veln discutirn vegn:
-- Dayn gelibter bikher un farvos
-- Vos vestu ton, oyb du vest bakumen a bilyon dolar
-- Vi azoy veln mir lebn afn pensyeh, oyb mir lebn mer vi  draytsik yor nokh 65?
More info: 415.789.7679flisik[at]

At a private home, SAN FRANCISCO

KlezCalifornia Party, Sunday, September 18

Sunday, September 18, 2:00-5:00pm, KlezCalifornia Semi-Annual Party. Food, music, shmoozing, and more! If you are a Contributing Member, you should already have received your invitation.

 If you are not yet a donor, it's not too late! Donate any amount to get your invitation to this heymishparty! Donating is easy - by credit card on our donation page
 or mail a check to KlezCalifornia,1728 Allston Way, Berkeley, CA 94703. More info: 415.789.7679info[at]
At a private home, OAKLAND
KlezCalifornia Klezmer Workshops and Jams this Fall

Palo Alto Jam in July
New! KlezCalifornia is very pleased to launch a series of klezmer workshops and jams this Fall.  After experimenting with initial pilot eventswe are now ready for the workshops and jams to be an on-going KlezCalifornia program. The current format is a result of your feedback!  However, future feedback will help determine the direction of this series.  

Three events are now scheduled at different  locations:

Sunday, September 251:00-4:15pm.  

At Art House Gallery & Cultural Center, BERKELEY


Sunday, October 306:30-9:45pm.

At Congregation Etz Chayim, PALO ALTO

Sunday, November 61:00-4:15pm.
At Congregation B'nai Emunah, SAN FRANCISCO 


Each event will have two sessions The first session will be a 90-minute klezmer instrumental workshop for musicians with little or no klezmer experience but who are proficient on  their instruments. It will be taught by an experienced klezmer musician and teacher, and will include playing tunes with charts, getting familiar with klezmer techniques, and learning some tunes by ear at a slow pace.  

After a short break, there will be a 90 minute klezmer jam session for those with at least intermediate familiarity with playing klezmer and/or jamming. After the leader begins the session with a warm up tune or two, musicians will take turns "calling" a tune, with everyone learning new tunes by ear or enjoying  playing/improvising on familiar ones.The leader will provide guidance for pace, transitions, and ensure an overall smoothly run and fun evening!

Come for both sessions or just one. Refreshments provided. Donation of $10-$20 requested. Reservations not necessary but greatly appreciated, please email jams[at] and indicate what instrument you play and which event and which session(s) you plan to attend. We will also add you to a special mailing list through which you will receive more information, including who will teach/lead each event.   


Over the next year, we will try out several models of workshops and jams.Your feedback is critical so let us know your preferences! 

Yiddish Classes Starting in September

Exciting new and continuing Yiddish classes with top notch teachers this Fall will be held in Berkeley, Palo Alto, San Francisco, Santa Cruz, Stanford and Walnut Creek.

Starting Friday, September 93:00-5:00pm, Beginning Yiddish, with Rochelle Goldman. Two alternate Friday afternoons each month. Speaking, reading, writing, and grammar. Choose one of two textbooks: Marvin Zuckerman's Learning Yiddish in Easy Stages or Sheva Zucker's Yiddish: An Introduction to the Language, Literature & Culture for those who have been in the class previously. Presented by The Workmen's Circle/Arbeter Ringand KlezCalifornia. No charge, but rsvp by September 6. More info:650.577.1531roshnman[at]
At the San Francisco Main Library, SAN FRANCISCO

Starting Monday, September 12Monday evenings for 10 sessions, 7:00-9:00pm, Reading Yiddish Literature, with Reb Yankl Levitow. For students with some ability to read Yiddish literature in the original. Fluency is by no means required, but a basic ability to read is. Some instruction and discussion takes place in Yiddish. Tuition: $250. More info: 650.813.9094 (venue), ynkl[at],
At Congregation Etz Chayim, PALO ALTO

Starting Tuesday September 13Tuesday evenings 7:00-9:00pm for 10 sessions, Intermediate Yiddish, with Reb Yankl Levitow. For students with some ability to read, write, and speak.Tuition: $250. More info: 831.457.0264 (venue), ynkl[at]
At Congregation Kol Tefila, SANTA CRUZ 

Starting Monday, September 197:00-8:30pm for 10 sessions, Beginning Yiddish Part Two, with Ken Blady. Students with a background in the basics are welcome to join this continuation class. 
Presented by Lehrhaus Judaica and co-sponsored by KlezCalifornia. Tuition: $175 public, $160  Lehrhaus Judaica members. More info: 510.845.6420Lehrhaus Judaica catalogue

Starting Tuesday, September 20, 12:00noon-1:30pm, Beginning Yiddish: A Lek (lick) and a Shmek(taste) of Yiddish, with Ken Blady. Learn this rich and colorful language in a relaxed, irreverent andheymisheh atmosphere. All you need is some zitz-fleysh (butt + patience) an ardent desire to learn, an interest in Jewish culture, and an ability tzu vern tzeshusn far gelekhter (to crack up). Presented by Lehrhaus Judaica and co-sponsored by KlezCalifornia. Tuition: $160 public, $145 Lehrhaus Judaica members. More info: 510.845.6420Lehrhaus Judaica catalogue
At Congregation B'nai Shalom, WALNUT CREEK

Starting Wednesday, September 217:00-8:30pm, Intermediate Yiddish, with Ken Blady. This is a continuation class that started in 2012 at the beginning level. New students are welcome - must have some background in Yiddish, including knowledge of the alef-beys, or done previous coursework in Yiddish. Presented by Lehrhaus Judaica and co-sponsored by KlezCalifornia.Tuition: $175 public, $160 Lehrhaus Judaica members. More info: 510.845.6420Lehrhaus Judaica catalogue

Starting Monday, September 26, Mondays and Wednesdays, 3:30- 5:20pm, Introduction to Yiddish, with Reb Yankl Levitow. Primarily for Stanford students, but auditors are permitted. Stanford students are very focused learners, and they go fast. In addition, the classes can be very small, most often from two to five students, so, this option isn't for everyone. On the other hand, this class is for absolute beginners and the students and teacher are very happy to have company. Sometimes the class times are renegotiated because of students' schedules. More info: ynkl[at],
At Stanford University, STANFORD

U.C. Berkeley's Beginning Yiddish and Readings in Yiddish began in late August. More info:510.643.2004Germanic[at]Berkeley.eduDepartment of German and Dutch Studies

Ongoing:  You might also be interested in the monthly Yiddish Tish led by Reb Irwin Keller at Congregation Ner Shalom (Cotati) or Yiddish clubs at the JCC East Bay (Berkeley), Oshman Family JCC (Palo Alto), and Peninsula JCC (Foster City) all described in the KlezCalifornia Geleh Pages

Introductory Yiddish will be offered by Reb Yankl Levitow in the Winter Quarter at University of California, Santa Cruz. Auditors are permitted. More info:ynkl[at]
On the Web

Shtisel's Ghosts: The Politics of Yiddish in Israeli Popular Culture
, by Shayna Weiss, from In Geveb, an online journal of Yiddish studies (thanks to Ethel Murphy).  

The late Bruce Adler sings Fishl Kanapoff's vaudeville hit, Hu-tsa-tsa
 with the Barcelona Symphony. Each verse is a joke, with subtitles (NOTE: kutshenu mutshenu is how you say hanky panky in Yiddish!) (thanks to Achi Ben Shalom). 

New site, Klezmer Academy
, of clarinetist Sherry Mayrent, with klezmer tunes, discussions of klezmer theory, practical lessons on style, musings on current and past trends in the music and its performance, and other topics on all aspects of klezmer and its history.

Funny video promo for "Yiddish With Dick and Jane"
 by Ellis Weiner and Barbara Davilman, includes definitions of some popular Yiddish words (thanks to Ken Blady).

The Barry Sisters in a rare video rendition of their classic hit, Nu, Zug Mir Shoyn Ven
, with transliteration and English translation (thanks to Simon of Hatikvah Music, as posted on the Jewish Music Listserv).
Farshidns (This 'n That)

Yiddish saying of the monthNit kayn entfer iz oykh an entfer. No answer is also an answer. From: Yiddish Wisdom, illustrated by Kristina Swarner. 
Community Events 

Monday, September 5, 6:00pm-8:00pm, Orchestra Euphonos. Entertainment free with minimum $10 purchase. More info: 510.848.3354Klezmer Monday at Saul's

At Saul's Restaurant & Deli, BERKELEY

Friday, September 9 and Saturday, September 10, Yiddish Dance Weekend, with Bruce Bierman. 
-- Friday Dance workshop, 6:00pm - 7:30pm.
-- Saturday Dance workshop, 4:00pm - 5:30pm, tickets $10-$20, sliding scale.
-- Saturday Jewish World Beat Dance Party, tickets $15-$25, sliding scale. 
More info: 707.444.2846Temple Beth El Eureka
At Temple Beth El, EUREKA
Sunday, September 11, 12:00noon-2:00pm, KlezCalifornia Flisik Yidish Salon. For fluent Yiddish
speakers. See box above.
At a private home, SAN FRANCISCO

Monday, September 126:00-8:00pm, Ghost Note Ensemble. Entertainment free with minimum
$10 purchase. More info: 510.848.3354Klezmer Monday at Saul's

At Saul's Restaurant & Deli, BERKELEY
Monday evenings, beginning September 12, 7:30pm, Nigunim Chorus starts a new season.
The chorus, which sings in Yiddish, Hebrew, Ladino and English, is this year focusing on the work of Jewish female songwriters.More info: achibenshalom[at]
Wednesday, September 14, 7:00pm, Frank London and Glenn Hartman. See September 15 event below for more about the artists. No charge. More info: 650.213.9600Kehillah Jewish High School
At Kehillah Jewish High School, PALO ALTO
Thursday, September 15, 5:30pm, Frank London, Glenn Hartman and Jake Marmer. Trumpeter,
bandleader and composer Frank London (of The Klezmatics) performs new klezmer music, improvisations, and spoken word with accordionist Glenn Hartman and poet Jake Marmer. No charge for event but $5 parking fee. Seats may be reserved two weeks in advance, i.e. September 1. More info:707.664.2324Sonoma State Jewish Music Series
At Sonoma State University, ROHNERT PARK

Saturday, September 17, 7:30pm (doors open 7:00pm), Mama Loshn Klezmer Band, with dancing led by Bruce Bierman. Tickets: $20 general / $15 students. More info: 707.664.8622Ner Shalom
At Congregation Ner Shalom, COTATI

Sunday, September 182:00-5:00pm, KlezCalifornia Semi-Annual Party. For donors, Board and Advisory Council members. See box above. More info: 415.789.7679info[at]
At a private home, OAKLAND

Sunday, September 18, 2:00pm, Erased: Babi Yar, the SS and Me, written and performed by Corey Weinstein. A dramatic memoir in song that recounts the Holocaust by bullets in the Ukraine in 1941. September 29-30 mark the 75th anniversary of the massacre at Babi Yar. No charge, but donations requested to benefit Alliance for the Study of the Holocaust and Genocide. To reserve seats:office[at] More info: 707.360.3000 (venue), babiyarandme[at]
At Congregation Beth Ami, SANTA ROSA 

Saturday, September 24, 8:00pm and Sunday, September 25, 5:00pm, The Dybbuk: A Multi-Media Chamber Opera. Composed by Ofer Ben-Amots and inspired by S. An-ski's timeless Yiddish play. In English and Hebrew with supertitles. Saturday pre-show talk with composer and Colorado University Composition Professor Ofer Ben Amots. Sunday pre-show lecture and talk with three world experts on the Dybbuk: Rabbi David Booth, Stanford Professor and renowned An-ski scholar Gabriella Safran, and composer Ofer Ben Amots.Tickets: $40-$55. More info: 650.223.8699The Dybbuk
At Oshman Family JCC, PALO ALTO

Sunday, September 251:00-4:15pm, KlezCalifornia Klezmer Workshop and Jam. See box above. Donation of $10-$20 requested. More info: 415.789.7679jams[at]
At Art House Gallery & Cultural Center, BERKELEY

Tuesday, September 27, 11:30am-1:30pm, Veretski PassRosheshuneh lunch followed by performance. Tickets: $20. Reservations required by September 21. More info: 650.223.8616,mrosengaus[at]paloaltojccPalo Alto JCC
At Oshman Family JCC, PALO ALTO

Wednesday, September 28 and Friday, September 307:30-9:30pm, Erased: Babi Yar, the SS and Me. See description of September 18 performance, above. More info: babiyarandme[at]
-- Wednesday: Tickets from The Marsh
. Performance at The Marsh, SAN FRANCISCO
-- Friday: No charge. Performance at Community Music Center, SAN FRANCISCO  

Thursday, September 29, 6:30pm, Last Yiddish Heroes: Lost and Found Songs of Soviet Jews during World War II, with singer Psoy Korolenko and historian Anna Shternshis. 
Reception followed by performance and lecture. More info and to rsvp: 510.643.2526The Magnes
At The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life, BERKELEY 
Coming in October

Monday, October 36:00-8:00pm, Ben Goldberg. Entertainment free with minimum $10 purchase. More info: 510.848.3354Klezmer Monday at Saul's
At Saul's Restaurant & Deli, BERKELEY
Monday, October 106:00-8:00pm, Ghost Note Ensemble. Entertainment free with minimum $10 purchase. More info: 510.848.3354Klezmer Monday at Saul's
At Saul's Restaurant & Deli, BERKELEY

Monday, October 176:00-8:00pm, Hernandez Hideaway. Entertainment free with minimum $10 
purchase. More info: 510.848.3354Klezmer Monday at Saul's
At Saul's Restaurant & Deli, BERKELEY

Wednesday, October 266:00-8:00pm, Klezmer Creek. Fourth Wednesday Klezmer Night. $5 minimum. More info: 707.544.2491Gaia's Garden
At Gaia's Garden, SANTA ROSA 

Thursday, October 27, 7:30pm, Silicon Valley Jewish Film Festival Opening Night with special guest Mike Burstyn, award-winning actor whose career has spanned Yiddish theater, Broadway and film. Screening of Celebration: The Story of Israeli Cinema. More info: 408.498.0904SVJFF
At Oshman Family JCC, PALO ALTO

Sunday, October 306:30-9:30pm, KlezCalifornia Klezmer Workshop and Jam. Leader to be announced. See box above. Donation of $10-$20 requested. More info: 415.789.7679,jams[at]
At Congregation Etz Chayim, PALO ALTO 
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:
 * "Live & Be Well, A Celebration of Yiddish Culture in America,"
 by Richard F. Shepard and Vicki Gold Levi (192 pp.) * "The Oy Way," 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 special 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!