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During and just after World War II, folklorist Moshe Beregovsky and the Kiev Cabinet for Jewish Culture collected original Yiddish songs written by Soviet Jews. But in 1949, the Soviet government confiscated and hid away the songs. In this all-new concert and lecture program, singer-songwriter Psoy Korolenko and historian Anna Shternshis bring these lost Yiddish songs to life and share the incredible stories behind these treasures.
PSOY KOROLENKO AND ANNA SHTERNSHIS
Pavel Lion, a.k.a. Psoy Korolenko, is one of Russia’s most popular – and clever – songwriters, as well as a pre-eminent Yiddish singer. He is a Moscow based singer/songwriter, translator, scholar and journalist. Self-referred to as a ''wandering scholar'' and an ''avant-bard'', he is know for his multilingual one-person cabaret-esque shows, which balance folk and klezmer music, free-style poetry and intellectual comedy. Psoy writes and sings in English, Russian, Yiddish, and French. On stage since 2000, he has published one book of selected essays and song lyrics ''The Hit Of The Century'', and 14 CDs – some of them in collaboration with active Jewish and Klezmer musicians ("Opa!", Daniel Kahn, Igor Krutogolov, "Oy Division"). Psoy is a member of the organizing committee for a Russian American music festival JetLAG, a guest of many klezmer music festivals, and an ex-artist in residence at the Trinity College (Hartford), University of Michigan (Ann Arbor), Dickinson College (Carlisle, PA). An author of insightful and sophisticated Russian sung poetry, Psoy is also known for his keen and explorative vision of the art of translation, “tradaptation” and what he calls Spell-Art (i.e. playing with foreign text, emphasizing linguistic distances, multilingual songs etc).
Anna Shternshis holds the position of Al and Malka Green Associate Professor of Yiddish studies at the University of Toronto. She is also the Director of the Anne Tanenbaum Centre for Jewish Studies at the University of Toronto. She received her doctoral degree (D.Phil) in Modern Languages and Literatures from Oxford University in 2001. Shternshis is the author of Soviet and Kosher: Jewish Popular Culture in the Soviet Union, 1923 - 1939 (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2006). Her second book entitled When Sonia Met Boris: Jewish Daily Life in Soviet Russia is forthcoming from Oxford University Press in 2017. She is currently working on the book-length study of evacuation and escape of Soviet Jews during World War II. She is the author of twenty articles on topics of Russian Jewish culture and post-Soviet Jewish diaspora. Shternshis is a co-editor-in-chief of East European Jewish Affairs.