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Public Program: “State of the Jews” by Alex Weiser

Thursday, May 2, 2019 7:00 pm

Turtle Bay Music School
330 E 38th St New York, NY, 10016 map
Free  

Join for an evening of songs by composer Alex Weiser including never-before-seen, work-in-progress excerpts from his opera-in-progress State of the Jews with Librettist Ben Kaplan. 
State of the Jews follows Theodor Herzl in the last year of his life, as his efforts to secure a Jewish homeland become increasingly desperate. It includes scenes from the Sixth Zionist congress, in which Herzl proposes Uganda as a possible land for Jewish settlement, and Herzl’s visit with Pope Pius X, in which he seeks the Pope’s support for a Jewish State. Interwoven with this public historical narrative is the more intimate story of Theodor’s conflicted relationship with his wife, Julie Herzl, and the toll his political views and activities took on their family life.

The performance will be followed by a panel discussion about history, memory, and their operatic depiction featuring Eddy Portnoy (Academic Advisor & Exhibitions Curator, YIVO Institute for Jewish Research), Michael Simonson (Head of Public Outreach & Archivist, Leo Baeck Institute), Ronit Muszkatblit (Director of Arts and Culture, 14th Street Y), and Matt Gray (Producing Director, American Opera Projects).

Q&A and reception to follow.