Josh Waletzky, (born in Brooklyn, in 1948) is one of the leading Yiddish songwriters in the world. He grew up immersed in the Yiddish music world of his family and secular school/camp network and has been teaching, performing, and writing Yiddish songs and instrumentals ever since. Yiddish music has also figured prominently in his documentary filmmaking career, from “Image Before My Eyes” (1981) and “Partisans of Vilna” (1986) to PBS programs featuring Itzhak Perlman to his four recent films on Yiddish writers, from Beyle Schaechter-Gottesman (2005) to Yonia Fain (2017). Josh was a founding member of the early klezmer revival band “Kapelye,” and went on to collaborate with Deborah Strauss and Jeff Warschauer on a landmark collection of his original Yiddish songs in 2002, “Crossing the Shadows.” He has a new album of Yiddish songs, “PASAZHIRN / Passengers”
Deborah Strauss is an internationally acclaimed klezmer violinist and educator who has been active in the klezmer and Yiddish music scene for over 30 years. She is a member of the Strauss/Warschauer
Duo, was a long-time member of the Klezmer Conservatory Band, one of the premiere groups of the klezmer revival, and has performed with the Grammy Award-winning Klezmatics. She has appeared on numerous recordings, was featured in the Emmy Award-winning film, Itzhak Perlman: In the Fiddler’s House, and appears in the film, Theodore Bikel: In the Shoes of Sholom Aleichem.
Deborah has performed across North America and throughout
Western and Eastern Europe and Israel. She leads workshops and classes annually at the Jewish Culture Festival in Krakow, Yiddish Summer Weimar, Yiddish New York and KlezKanada. In addition, she has taught at the Jewish Music Institute/SOAS at the University of London and the 92nd Street Y in New York City. Deborah is also a highly regarded Yiddish dancer and dance leader. Deborah has a B.Mus from Rutgers University and studied ethnomusicology on the graduate level at the University of Chicago.
Born in New York City, violinist Jake Shulman-Ment is among the leaders of a new generation of Klezmer and Eastern European folk music performers. He has performed and recorded internationally with Daniel Kahn and the Painted Bird, Di Naye Kapelye, Adrian Receanu, The Other Europeans, Frank London, Duncan Sheik, and many more. Jake has been a faculty member of New York’s Henry Street Settlement, KlezKamp, KlezKanada, Klezmer Paris, the Krakow Jewish Culture Festival, Yiddish Summer Weimar, and other festivals throughout the globe. In 2010 Jake received a Fulbright research grant to collect, study, perform, and document traditional music in Romania. Jake’s debut solo CD, “A Redele (A Wheel)” (Oriente Musik, 2012) was nominated for the German Record Critics’ Award.