Yiddish Song Concert Performed Live from Berlin

Sunday, April 18, 2021
12:00PM (EST). Virtual on UVA Music YouTube. Registration required.


In conjunction with the annual residency with the UVA Klezmer Ensemble, the University of Virginia Music Department will host a live-streamed concert with the acclaimed, Berlin-based duo of singer Svetlana Kundish (Israel) and accordionist-composer Patrick Farrell (USA) on Sunday, April 18, 2021 from 12-1 pm Charlottesville time. The duo is teaching and rehearsing with the ensemble regularly throughout the semester. The residency will culminate in a series of recordings mostly of Farrell’s recent compositions featuring Kundish and Farrell with clarinetist Joel Rubin and the UVA Klezmer Ensemble that will be posted to the Music Department’s youtube page at the end of the semester. The residency is co-sponsored by the Vice Provost for the Arts, the Jewish Studies Program, the Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies, the Center for German Studies, the Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures, and the Department of Middle Eastern and South Asian Languages and Cultures.

Performing live from their current home in Berlin, Kundish & Farrell present original Yiddish songs written by Patrick Farrell for voice and accordion. Straddling the lines of art song, folk music, new music, and free jazz, their deeply personal repertoire draws on myriad influences to make truly new music based on 20th- and 21st-century Yiddish poetry. Together they deliver a subtle, powerful, and passionate oeuvre.

Sveta Kundish is a singer who performs a wide variety of Jewish music throughout Europe. She appears with Regalim Kapelye, Voices of Ashkenaz and Trickster Orchestra among others, and is a regular faculty member at Yiddish Summer Weimar. Born in Ukraine and later moving to Israel, Kundish holds degrees from Tel Aviv University and the Prayner Konservatorium in Vienna, and in 2017 completed a degree in Cantorial Studies from the Abraham Geiger Kolleg in Potsdam, Germany. Kundish currently works as the first female cantor in the history of the Jewish communities of Lower Saxony, Germany. In 2018 she performed the onscreen role of the singer Rushka in the upcoming Hollywood film production, Harry Haft, by Oscar-winning director Barry Levinson.

Patrick Farrell is a United States-born, Berlin-based accordionist, composer and bandleader. He is an active part of the international klezmer community as a performer and teacher, plays with new music and improvisational groups, and enthusiastically toots on an alto horn in various brass bands. Farrell has appeared onstage with some of the world’s best-known klezmer bands and performers, as well as on dozens of recordings, including with Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble, Never Enough Hope, and singer Adrienne Cooper, and also enjoys working with dance and theater ensembles as a composer, music director and accompanist. In 2019 he appeared onstage in the remount of the original Tony-award-winning Broadway production of Indecent (LADCC Award-winner for Production and Ensemble Performance). He has studied accordion in Macedonia, Serbia, Germany, and Romania, and has played in clubs, concert halls, streets, and serenades all over North America and Europe.

The UVA Klezmer Ensemble has been a vital part of the musical community of Central and Northern Virginia for the past fifteen years, performing each semester in Old Cabell Hall as well as at conferences and festivals throughout the region. In its online format, this semester’s ensemble is based not only in Charlottesville, but also in Ohio, Belgium, and Switzerland, and is made up of undergraduates, graduate and undergraduate alumnae, and other members of the extended greater Central Virginia community. The group is committed to ethnic, racial, cultural and religious diversity. Over the years, members have had backgrounds from the US, Russia, Ukraine, Israel, Lebanon, Armenia, Iran, Bangladesh, and India, and with religious backgrounds ranging from Jewish to Christian, Hindu, Muslim, and Buddhist. With the impending retirement of Associate Professor and Director of Music Performance Joel Rubin, these may be the last performances by this ensemble.

Please register for the event here and a link will be sent to you.

Please call the Music Department at 434.924.3052 for more information.

All events are subject to change.