Yenta’s Lied comprises 6 Yiddish poems set to music, complemented by incidental instrumental pieces, all composed by Allan Segall. The poems, which will be recited in Yiddish and English before being sung, come from Jewish authors from Poland and the Ukraine writing between the two world wars. Segall’s unique compositional language, taking its inspiration from Klezmer and Classical music, draws us into this vanished world. Photos of early 20th century European Jewish life accompany the performance.
Yenta’s Lied is a vibrant and poignant reflection of a way of life that is gone forever. The poems speak of life in the shtetl (a small largely Jewish settlement in Central and Eastern Europe), of poverty, death, love and wonder.They come from a specific cultural context, yet their message resonates universally and has the power to speak to audiences today.
Persephone Abbott, who has in the last few years immersed herself in Yiddish language and culture, functions as singer/narrator. She is joined by fellow members of Trio Dice – Annemarie van Prooijen, violin and Petr Karlicek, piano – with special guest Michel Marang on clarinet.