MEMORIAConcert of Remembrance 2009

Thuesday Januar 22, 2009 at 8 p.m.
La Fenice Theater - Sale Apollinee, Venezia



Federica Lotti, flute
Federico Lovato, piano
Elia Ricetti (Chief Rabbi of Venice), voice and shofĂ r
Alina Stankevitch, soprano
Olga Ermambetova, mezzo-soprano
Svetlana Sayad, piano


DARIUS MILHAUD (1892-1974)
"Sonatine" (1922)

"Sonata op.61" (1927)

ERNEST BLOCH (1880-1959)
"Suite Modale" (1956)



"From Jewish Poetry"


I. The first part of the program will be Dmitri Shostakovich's beautiful song cycle, "From Jewish Poetry", sung by two Russian vocalists, Alina Stankevitch and Olga Ermambetova, accompanied on piano by Svetlana Sayad. They all studied at distinguished music institutions in Moscow and are now living in Italy.


II. The second part of the program is devoted to music from the Jewish liturgy performed during festivals, part of the culture of the various Italian Jewish communities, but also from the Spanish and German traditions. Through his choices, Elia Ricetti, Chief Rabbi of Venice, will interpret the rich musical liturgical heritage which has been transmitted orally for centuries, an emotional testimony of the union between its recognizable roots and fertile contamination with the everyday life of the various communities. His contribution will be enriched by the timbre of the shofar, the ram's horn from ancient times in the Hebrew tradition.


III. The last part of the program will be performed by Federica Lotti, a flautist with a brilliant career who now teaches at the Benedetto Marcello Conservatore. She will be accompanied by Federico Lovato. This part of the program is devoted to 20th-century compositions for flute and piano by three composers who were all interested in Jewish culture. They are the French composer Darius Milhaud, Erwin Schulhoff from Bohemia, and the Swiss/American Ernest Bloch, all of whose styles are very different from each other. Milhaud is a Jewish composer born in Provence, France. He will be represented by his lovely "Sonatine" (1922) that is light, refined, with a slight influence of jazz.


The second composer is Erwin Schulhoff, a Jewish composer born in Bohemia, who was arrested and interred in the camp at Wulzberg in Baveria, where he died. Schlulhoff wrote his "Sonata" in 1927 at the dawn of Nazism. An "infant protegé" of piano, he was traumatized by the horrible experience at the Western Front during WWI, and became a member of the Communist Party. He brought jazz to Prague, but was soon declared a degenerate artist and imprisoned. He died after a year in a concentration camp in Bavaria.


The third is the composer Ernst Bloch, who emigrated to the United States before the winds of war began to blow in Europe. In many pieces he used musical motives from Jewish culture, such as "Schelomo" for cello and orchestra and "Baal Schem" for violin and piano. In 1956 he wrote "Suite Modale", in which the Jewish melodies he used are clearly heard.