HEVREH Ensemble
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Speed of Dark

Our new recording Speed of Dark will be released in fall of 2018. The album was produced by Ralph Farris (violist with the string quartet ETHEL) and engineered by Todd Carder, Bunker Studios- Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The CD includes several new works by composer and group member Jeff Adler: “Sweetgrass, Cedar and Sage,” “Hacked,” “A Thousand Questions,” “Epilogue,” “Wudeligv,” and “Sima de los Heusos.”

On the album, we are joined by several guest artists including the string quartet ETHEL, Naren Budhkar on tabla, Shane Shanahan (Silk Road Ensemble) on percussion and George Rush on double bass.

Recording is always challenging and difficult work. As performers we are accustomed to live performances and know that even in the best of circumstances mistakes or missed notes will occur. In the recording studio, the challenge is to try to be both spontaneous and musical while simultaneously generating note-perfect takes. The combined pressures to be both spontaneous and perfectly accurate can sometimes feel a bit overwhelming! All of the Hevreh group members agreed that even though this recording brought up all of the usual feelings, we all felt that the whole experience was made so much easier — and even contained moments of joy and a bit of hilarity — because of our wonderful colleague and producer Ralph Farris. He is an excellent musician with an incredible ear and an enormous amount of energy.

We were also fortunate to have the wonderful and talented photographer Bess Adler stop by (between assignments from the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal) to document our recording sessions!

Poland Tour
June 2018

 Hevreh Ensemble has just returned from our tour to Poland. We were delighted  to perform for the prestigious International Jewish Cultural Festival in Krakow, Poland. The concert was held at The Galicia Museum to a sold out audience! Krakow was bustling with activity during the festival, with many concerts, lectures and other activities scheduled during the week of June 25th. It was wonderful to witness people from around the world coming together to celebrate the renewal of Jewish Culture in Poland!  After the festival, we  performed in Lublin at Galeria Labirynt; a contemporary art museum. The museum is housed in a Soviet Era factory/trade school. In Warsaw, we performed for the stunningly beautiful POLIN Jewish Museum. The museum was built on the site of the Warsaw Ghetto and we felt that this location was  particularly appropriate for our collaboration with photographer Loli Kantor. Her evocative and gripping images that were projected on four large screens, spoke in a deep way for both the audience and ourselves.  Loli’s parents were Holocaust survivors from Poland. Raised in Israel, Loli returned to Poland in 2004 for the first time to capture images of the unknown world her parents left behind, and in doing so, reclaimed her own identity. She published the results of these journeys in her 2015 book, Beyond the Forest: Jewish Presence in Eastern Europe, 2004-2012

We feel that this collaboration, and our tour throughout Poland was  the perfect expression of Hevreh Ensemble’s mission and vision. We had the opportunity to bring our uplifting and spiritual/soulful music to an international audience through intimate and engaging performances in unusual venues.The Cultural Director at the POLIN Museum,Kajetan Prochyra said:"that both artistically and... how to put it in a nutshell. I think your project touched the very core of our museum. Homecoming. Both privately and as member of the staff of the museum, I would like you to feel at home here. It's your museum!"

 We were gratified to know that these museums and Loli’s involvement in the project attracted an audience that might not otherwise have had the opportunity to hear a concert like ours: we have  expanded our hevreh (circle of friends) and continue to celebrate our heritage and origins. 

You can keep up-to-date with our Polish adventures on our blog, and if you are as excited as we are, keep checking back for upcoming dates where you can see this innovative program here in the USA. You can also support our tour and our domestic programs here

Share Your Story

 

Hevreh Ensemble is conducting audience research as part of a grant from Hofstra University in New York, USA. We encourage you to use this form to share your personal comments and stories about how our presentation of music and images affected you. Please indicate whether or not you wish for your comments to remain anonymous - you are not required to include your name in order to submit the form. You can use the Google translator dropdown if you would like to read this description and the text of the form in Polish. Thank you for your support and your assistance with our research - your stories are invaluable!

 
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Education Projects

Outreach is an important part of Hevreh Ensemble’s mission. We owe our success to the amazing teachers who nurtured us and encouraged our musical development. We also recognize that not every child has access to the same educational opportunities we had and we strive to provide meaningful musical experiences for as many children as possible. We host residencies and master classes for students ranging from elementary school to college age.

Sessions for younger children may include short programs that encourage student engagement. We work with elementary and middle schools to develop interdisciplinary programs that incorporate dance and visual art.

Hevreh Ensemble can also work with high school and college educators to tailor programs to students’ areas of interest. Past programs have included workshops on composition, improvisation, chamber music performance, woodwind performance, and Native American flute.

 

The Hevreh Ensemble presented a Children's Concert for PS 199 in Brooklyn, made possible by a grant from Hofstra University & The D'Addario Foundation. Video by Bess Adler and edited by Kholood Eid.

The Hevreh Ensemble provided our students with the opportunity to see and experience the joy of making music and what it means to be a musician.
— Rosalia Bacarella, Principal, PS 199 (Brooklyn, NY)