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JMI Online: Klezfest 2021 (BOOK NOW)

Tuesday 13th July Thursday 15th July

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We are very happy to announce that our world famous Klezmer summer school is back again for 2021.

Join the world famous music school and learn klezmer this summer at KlezFest 2021. Here is a a peek into what you can expect:


  • Teaching in instruments groups
  • Woodwind
  • Brass
  • Upper strings
  • Lower strings
  • Percussion
  • Plucked strings
  • Accordion & piano

TIMETABLE

DaySession 1
5.00-6.30pm


Session 2
7.00-8.30pm
Monday 12.07.21
Winds: Laurent Clouet (clarinet)
Brass: Susan Hoffman Watts (trumpet)
Upper strings: Amit Weisberger (violin)
Lower strings: Francesca Ter-Berg (cello)
Percussion: Simon Roth (drums)
Plucked strings: Jeff Warschauer (guitar/mandolin)
Accordion/piano: Szilvia Csaranko (accordion/piano)
Michael Winograd – Klezmer in Hi-fi 1955-1960

OR

Jam session survival training with Szilvia Csaranko & Susi Evans
Tuesday 13.07.21
Winds: Laurent Clouet (clarinet)  
Brass: Susan Hoffman Watts (trumpet)
Upper strings: Amit Weisberger (violin)
Lower strings: Francesca Ter-Berg (cello)
Percussion: Simon Roth (drums)
Plucked strings: Jeff Warschauer (guitar/mandolin)
Accordion/piano: Szilvia Csaranko (accordion/piano)

Waxband tunes with Amit Weissberger and Laurent Clouet

OR

Jam session with Anna Lowenstein and Simon Roth
Wednesday 14.07.21
Winds: Susi Evans (clarinet)
Brass: Dan Blacksberg (trombone)
Upper strings: Deborah Strauss (violin)
Lower strings: Mark Rubin (Bass)
Percussion: Simon Roth (drums)
Plucked strings: Jeff Warschauer (guitar/mandolin)
Accordion/piano: Alan Bern (accordion/piano)


Frank London’s Improvisation in Klezmer
In this intensive class, we will investigate
three strategies for improvising in klezmer music:
1) modal chord scales
2)rhythmic patterns
3)formal ‘jazz-style’; with practical examples and exercises in each.


OR

Jam session with Francesca Ter-Berg and Flora Curzon
Thursday 15.07.21

Early Session – 3pm-4.30pm
Arranging for small ensembles with Ilana Cravitz



(5pm – 6.30pm)
Winds: Susi Evans (clarinet)
Brass: Dan Blacksberg (trombone)
Upper strings: Deborah Strauss (violin)
Lower strings: Mark Rubin (Bass)
Percussion: Simon Roth (drums)
Plucked strings: Jeff Warschauer (guitar/mandolin)
Accordion/piano: Alan Bern


Belf with Merlin Shepherd

OR

Jam session with Josh Middleton and Dan Gouly

 ENTRY: NO MINIMUM MUSIC ABILITY REQUIRED

  • Technical Scholarships: If you are a current student and would like a scholarship to support your application fees we are able to offer you a reduction in exchange for your voluntary assistance to the JMI team during the week. The commitment will be based around your studies to ensure that you do not miss any classes and learning.

  • Any questions? Please don’t hesitate to contact JMI team for extra information about the course.

FEES:
Full rate £120
Student / Senior rate £80
Senior rate is set at 65+
Scholarship rate / Technical Scholarships please contact the team.

Refund policy:
10% if cancelled before 1 June.
25% if cancelled after 1 July.

Daily timings:

Monday 12th July: 5pm-8.30pm
Tuesday 13th July: 5pm-8.30pm
Wednesday 14th July: 5pm-8.30pm
Thursday 15th July: 3pm-4.30pm, 5pm-6.30pm, 7pm-8.30pm

Details

Start:
Tuesday 13th July
End:
Thursday 15th July
Cost:
£80 – £120
Event Category:

Frank London - Trumpet

Frank London

trumpet, keyboards

The word prolific doesn’t even begin to describe Frank London. Of course, there is the Klezmatics, which he co-founded in 1986. Frank plays trumpet and keyboard and sings with the group and he’s written many of the Klezmatics’ most popular songs. But his mile-long resumé has also seen London adding virtuosity to hundreds of concerts and recordings by everyone from John Zorn to They Might Be Giants, Mel Torme to Iggy Pop, Pink Floyd, Youssou N’dour, LaMonte Young, Allen Ginsberg and LL Cool J! Called the “mystical high priest of Avant-Klez jazz,” Frank has made 30 solo recordings and is featured on over 400 CDs. His current projects include the dance theater work Salomé, Woman of Valor (with Adeena Karasick), the Yiddish-opera-in-a-Cuban-nightclub, Hatuey (with Elise Thoron), Astro-Hungarian band Glass House Orchestra, Sharabi (bhangra-klez with Deep Singh), Ahava Raba (with Cantor Yanky Lemmer), and Vilde Mekhaye (Eleanor Reissa + Frank’s Klezmer Brass Allstars). He’s a regular face on New York’s cutting-edge downtown club scene and music festivals everywhere, and has written dozens of scores for theater, film and dance. He collaborated with Judith Sloane on 1001 Voices: A Symphony for a New America for the Queens Symphony Orchestra and choir. He was music director for David Byrne and Robert Wilson’s The Knee Plays, collaborated with Palestinian violinist Simon Shaheen, taught Jewish music in Canada, Crimea and the Catskills, and produced CDs for Gypsy legend Esma Redzepova, and Algerian pianist Maurice el Medioni. He was even featured on the soundtrack to Sex and the City!

Of course London is mainly known for his contribution to contemporary Jewish music. When he first heard klezmer music, Frank says, “I was very blown away by the funky rhythms, the polyphony, the wild old-world, old school ornamentation, the particular way it expressed its Jewishness and how the instrumental music was not at all kitschy or corny the way most Jewish music I had heard up to that point was.”

Frank London graduated from New England Conservatory with a degree in Afro-American music. While living in Boston, he played with a host of diverse groups, from the Klezmer Conservatory Band (a founding member, playing on their first six recordings) to the Haitian band Volo-Volo to the salsa band Los Hermanos Pabón, Mark Harvey’s new music big band Aardvark, the world music group Les Misérables Brass Band, and the improvisational Ensemble Garuda. “Playing a genre or style of music is like learning a language,” he says. “You need to know the vocabulary, grammar, syntax, content, history, idioms and inflections in order to become fluent. But improvisation is outside of style; it focuses on the sonic ontology of music. What is sound? What are the aesthetics of sound and silence? These questions are at the center of all my music.”

After settling in New York City in 1985, London began working with the all-star ensemble led by auteur Kip Hanrahan (which also included Jack Bruce of Cream), and then started working with Hasidic wedding musicians and learning the style and repertoire of Jewish music, as well as becoming involved in Hasidic philosophy and community. He also became a member of Lester Bowie’s Brass Fantasy. Then, after answering an ad for klezmer musicians, Frank met Lorin Sklamberg and the Klezmatics came to be.

Among London’s other projects are the internationally acclaimed folk-opera A Night In The Old Marketplace, Davenen for Pilobolus and the Klezmatics, Great Small Works’ The Memoirs Of Gluckel Of Hameln and Min Tanaka’s Romance. His Klezmer Brass Allstars‘ CD Carnival Conspiracy was awarded the German Grammy; the Hasidic New Wave’s entire recorded oevre has been released as a box set on Tzadik Records, he completed two commissions for Carnegie Hall and served as an artist-in-residence in Krems, Austria. Green Violin, his musical theater piece about the Soviet Yiddish theater written with Elise Thoron, won a Barrymore Prize for best new musical. London is on the faculty of SUNY Purchase, and is currently Artistic Director of KlezKanada. With each new undertaking, London brings his knowledge of the music’s traditions and aesthetics with him, “showing a way for people to embrace Yiddish culture on their own terms as a living, breathing part of our world and its political and aesthetic landscape.”


Susi Evans

Head Of Faculty - Susi Evans (Clarinet)

Susi “has a deep knowledge of the klezmer idiom” (Evening Standard), and her performances have inspired press reviews remarking on her “nimble solo features and excellent tone control” (The Scottish Herald). Susi is a founder member of She’Koyokh – an award-winning klezmer & Balkan band that was nominated for ‘Best Group’ in the Songlines World Music Awards 2012 and has performed internationally at festivals and venues such as WOMAD and the Concertgebouw. Susi also plays with the London Klezmer Quartet who have toured in Australia four times. She appeared regularly on the West End stage in the National Theatre’s smash-hit production of War Horse and has collaborated with the Aurora Orchestra, composer Jocelyn Pook, Frank London (Klezmatics) and Kalman Balogh & Alan Bern (The Other Europeans). Susi graduated from the Royal Academy of Music with a first class degree in 2004 and having studied in Istanbul with Selim Sesler, at the Plovdiv Music Academy in Bulgaria with Nikola Iliev and with leaders of the klezmer revival, is now in demand as a teacher herself.


Alan Bern

Alan Bern - Accordion and Piano

Alan Bern is the creator and artistic director of Yiddish Summer and co-founder and chairman of other music e.V., both based in Weimar, Germany. A pioneer of the American klezmer revival, he is a composer/arranger, pianist, accordionist, educator, cultural activist and philosopher. He is co-founder and director of Brave Old World, founder and director of The Other Europeans and Diaspora Redux. He has performed and recorded with Itzhak Perlman, Andy Statman, the Klezmatics, the Klezmer Conservatory Band, among others. He also performs with Bern, Brody & Rodach and with Guy Klucevsek. His education included classical piano with Paul Badura-Skoda and Leonard Shure, jazz with Karl Berger, the Art Ensemble of Chicago,  Anthony Braxton and others, contemporary music with John Cage, Frederic Rzewski, Joel Hoffman and others, and philosophy and cognitive science with Dan Dennett. He received his master’s degree in Philosophy and his doctorate degree in music composition. In 2009, he was given the Ruth Lifetime Achievement Award for his work as a musician and educator.


Ilana Cravitz

Ilana Cravitz - Violin/Fiddle

Ilana is one of a handful of professional violinists in the UK playing klezmer music in the traditional style. She has introduced thousands of people of all ages to klezmer through her performances, courses and workshops at festivals, venues of all shapes and sizes, and universities, colleges and schools. Her book, Klezmer Fiddle – a how-to guide, is published by Oxford University Press. Ilana also leads and calls for Yiddish dances and is a founder member of the London Klezmer Quartet, which within five years has produced three well-received CDs, toured Australia three times and appeared on national radio in a number of countries. She has worked with leading Sephardic music group Los Desterrados, and regularly plays English and Celtic music with ceilidh band The Muckers. Ilana studied baroque violin and viola da gamba at post-graduate level at the Royal College of Music in London, and can still sometimes be heard in concert playing on gut strings.


Merlin Shepherd - Clarinet

Merlin Shepherd’s clarinet provides the perfect foil for his deep musicality. Whether he’s playing traditional Klezmer with the Sound&Light Cinematic Duo or wild ecstatic music with Frank London’s Klezmer Brass Allstars and Boban Marcovic, or free-form wailing with Aaron Alexander’s Midrash Mish-Mosh or playing with his own quartet, his music is a powerful and emotional force that redefines the instrument.

His unique musical voice can be experienced on his debut solo CD of original material, “Intimate Hopes & Terrors”, (released on Oriente Musik) a unique collaboration with 10 of the top Klezmer musicians from the former Soviet Union. This recording was given a 5 star rating and also a “Top of the World” track on the cover CD of Songlines.

Has been Musical Director for The Royal National Theatre, Royal Shakespeare Company and Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, London. He was also Klezmer Advisor for the Royal Shakespeare Company for their 1992 production of Anski’s “The Dybbuk”. Composed scores for numerous dance and theatre companies. Leads The Merlin Shepherd Kapelye featuring The Former Soviet Union Klezmer Allstars that perform Merlin’s compositions in traditional and new klezmer style. Also leads the Merlin Shepherd Quartet, the smaller more intimate version of his Kapelye.

Leader of Hamsa Quintet since 2014, a Mediterranean Klezmer Funk band.


Simon Roth - Drums and Percussion

Simon is a drummer, improviser and composer working within the Contemporary, Jazz and World music scenes who has performed across the UK, Europe, North and South America and Asia. Having gained a first class honours degree in music from the University of York, where he delved into the music of Béla Bartók, György Ligeti and Igor Stravinsky and studied Electroacoustic music, Indian music and Contemporary Jazz with John Taylor and Julian Arguelles. Simon also studied Jazz at Newpark Music Centre in Dublin, Ireland, Carnatic Music at Brhaddhvani in Chennai, India and Music Pedagogy at the Kodály Institute in Kecskemét, Hungary.

He has collaborated with a diverse mix of musicians, from Mercury-nominated folk singer Sam Lee to experimental punk band Magnus Loom and multi-award winning vocalist Lauren Kinsella. Performance highlights include supporting Robert Glasper Trio at Ronnie Scott’s International Piano Trio Festival and Jools Holland at Greenwich Music Time with Elliot Galvin Trio. With Ghanaian-inspired group Vula Viel, he headlined Kings Place Festival, Songlines Encounters Festival and opening the 2015 London Jazz Festival at Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club. This year I was part of Brighter Sound’s Jazz Director’s Series, working in a ten-piece chamber ensemble with legendary US saxophonist Chris Potter & Inner City Ensemble for a UK tour of new music. His music has been performed at the BBC Proms and broadcast widely on national radio.

Collaborative projects include a multi-disciplinary show based on Sephardic folklore with the ten-piece electro-acoustic ensemble Sefiroth; ‘Dreamland’ – a multimedia installation at the Turner Contemporary featuring the Elliot Galvin Trio; and a dramatized interpretation of T.S Eliot’s ‘The Wasteland’ at the Happy Days International Beckett Festival. I also set up and ran the cross-arts platform Pop-Up Circus, staging exhibitions and live events throughout London from 2011-2014.


Anna Lowenstein - Violin

Training initially in Classical music, Anna graduated from Manchester University in 2015 with a BA in Music where she specialised in Performance and Ethnomusicology.

She has gigged, toured and taught across London and the UK, including at Cecil Sharp House, for Southbank Centre’s Friday Tonic series and The Jazz Cafe in London, Sage Gateshead- Newcastle, and multiple tours for the National Rural Touring Forum.Since 2011, Anna has been traveling internationally to learn with some of the leading performers and teachers of Klezmer music including Alicia Svigals in New York, Alan Bern in Weimar, Germany and Frank London in, well…London.

In 2020 Anna was accepted onto The Klezmer New Leaders Fellowship programme in partnership with The Brooklyn Conservatory of Music where she recieved lessons and mentorship from three leading Klezmer musicians: Lisa Gutkin, Marilyn Lerner and Zoe Aqua.

“a talented and creative musician who has made a great impact on the Klezmer scene in the UK. She is one of only a handful of fiddle players worldwide dedicated to the practise of Yiddish Historically Informed Performance”
– Susi Evans.

“Anna’s musicality shines through. Her attention to detail as a player of traditional klezmer music is excellent and true to style…not only that but she’s generous with her knowledge and a great educator”
– Merlin Shepherd

 


Michael Winograd

​Clarinetist Michael Winograd is one of the most respected and versatile working musicians in klezmer music today.  Based in Brooklyn, New York, Michael spends much of his time in transit, performing and teaching throughout the world.  He is one third of the transatlantic klezmer/cabaret collective Yiddish Art Trio, clarinetist of Tarras Band, a classic 1950’s Jewish American tribute group, and  the co-founder and director of the ground breaking, borderless world fusion band Sandaraa.  Michael also collaborates with Cantor Yaakov ‘Yanky’ Lemmer and Klezmatics trumpeter Frank London in Ahava Raba, a group that explores the spiritual sides of Ashkanazy Jewish Music. He has played along side Itzhak Perlman, The Klezmer Conservatory Band, Socalled, Budowitz, Alicia Svigals and more. ​

Along with revered Pakistani vocalist Zeb Bangash, Michael received the prestigious Map Fund Fellowship for their work in Sandaraa.  Additionally he was awarded a commission from Chamber Music America in 2014 to compose “The Pomegranate of Sistan,”  a collection of musical settings of contemporary Urdu Poetry.  The full work was premiered by Sandaraa in the spring of 2016.  Michael was also given a fellowship from the New York Foundation for the Arts in 2015.  ​

With a degree from the New England Conservatory of Music, Michael is an avid arranger and record producer.  In 2015 Michael arranged a program for Symphony Nova Scotia featuring dynamic Canadian singer/songwriter Ben Caplan.  Michael also provided orchestrations for Caplan’s most recent recording Birds with Broken Wings. and has produced records for Adrienne Cooper, Susan Leviton, Miryem Khaye-Siegel, Jeff Warshauer & Deborah Strauss, Josh Waletzky and others.

As an educator, Michael has taught seminars and workshops at many of the hubs for klezmer development including KlezKamp, KlezKanada, Yiddish Summer Weimar, Furth Klezmer Festival, Paris Klezmer workshop, Bonn Klezmer Week and others.  In 2015 Michael was one of the founders, organizers, teachers and performers of Yiddish New York, a festival and celebration of Yiddish music and culture in New York City.  Michael will also serve as Artistic Director for the 2017 Klezkanada Laurentian Retreat.

https://www.michaelwinograd.net/about.html


Deborah Strauss - Violin

Deborah Strauss is an internationally acclaimed Klezmer violinist, educator and dancer who has been at the forefront of the Klezmer and Yiddish music scene for over 30 years. She is a member of the Strauss/Warschauer Duo, was a long-time member of the Klezmer Conservatory Band, and has performed with the Grammy Award-winning Klezmatics. She has appeared on numerous recordings, was featured in the Emmy Award-winning film, Itzhak Perlman: In the Fiddler’s House, and appears in the film, Theodore Bikel: In the Shoes of Sholom Aleichem.

Deborah has performed and taught across North America and throughout Western and Eastern Europe, Australia and Israel. She leads workshops and classes annually at the Jewish Culture Festival in Krakow, Yiddish Summer Weimar, Yiddish New York and KlezKanada. Along with Klezmer superstar Alan Bern, Deborah is the author of Klezmer Duets for Violin and Accordion, published in 2017 by Universal Edition, Vienna.


Susan Hoffman Watts (trumpet)

Susan Hoffman Watts represents the youngest generation of an important klezmer dynasty that reaches back to the Jewish Ukraine of the 19th century, beginning with her great-grandfather, musician, composer, cornet-player, and poet,  Joseph Hoffman. Susan is the sole living purveyor of the family’s traditional klezmer-style trumpet sounds which electrified audiences for decades. Susan and the Hoffman family are the features of several televised documentaries.

In addition to playing with a variety of noted klezmer musicians from around the world. Watts has recorded, performed and sang with, Frank London’s Klezmer Brass All-Stars, Henkus Netsky,  Klezmer Concervatory Band, The Klezmatics, So-Called, Claire Barry, Mandy Pitankin, Dudu Fischer, Mikveh, Shtreimel, The Klez Dispensers,. Susan also has performed with her mother, the great klezmer drummer Elaine Hoffman Watts, in their Philadelphia-based group, the Fabulous Shpielkehs.

 Watts is a composer and arranger. Her repertoire is filled with Hoffman family repertoire: generations of klezmer compositions from her great grandfather, grandfather and now Susan’s additions to the family cannon. She has been commissioned to compose klezmer for Amsterdam’s Fiddle Kapelye and the American Composer’s Forum. As one of the leading klezmer trumpet players of the modern klezmer scene, Susan has taught at klezmer festivals in New York, France, Canada and London.

Susan is a 2015 Pew Fellow and the recipient of two Leeway Foundation Grants. Both projects are centered on using klezmer as a social change agent. Susan’s concept is the focus of a Pew Fellowship Project Grant granted to the Philadelphia Folklore Project. The Project is entitled, Soul Songs:  Inspiring Women of Klezmer. This projects brings together 12 of the top Klezmer instrumentalists in North America (whom all happen to be women) to perform new Klezmer compositions all penned by women. This event, directed by Watts is the blueprint by which modern klezmer can take its cue.

Susan Watts’ contribution to the present day landscape of klezmer is notable. Being a fourth generation klezmer is something that no other contemporary klezmer can acclaim. Her passion for Yiddish culture, klezmer music and its history has informed her life’s journey to this moment. Carrying the mantle of klezmer, keeping it in the forefront of the Jewish cultural experience and keeping it full of life is the essence of Susan Watts.


Amit Weisberger (violin)

The Israeli violinist, dancer, actor, and singer has been living in France since 2007, where within a short time he established himself as one of the leading artists of the French klezmer scene. He plays with various klezmer ensembles, including The Beygale Orkestra (Klezmer Fanfare), Waxband, Yiddishé Fantazyé Trio and The Belf Project (Old European klezmer from audio archives) as well as Kabarétalè (songs from Jewish cabaret), Tish (hassidic table songs) and “Szerelem” (love songs from Eastern Europe).

Amit has collaborated with key musicians in the international klezmer world, such as Alan Bern, Frank London and Sasha Lurje.

Offstage, he is also a sought-after klezmer teacher in France and other European countries. Since 2009, he has led klezmer workshops in Gannat, Luzy and Saint-Julien-Molin-Molette (Auvergne, France), “Tapis Vert” (Normandy), Manchester, Edinburgh, Prague and Mikulov, “Fiddlers on the move” (Belgium), Klezkanada (Canada), Klezmerim

Tsfat (Safed, Israel), as well as at Yiddish Summer Weimar.

Amit plays and teaches the violin only “by ear.” He had learned klezmer mostly from listening to and imitating audio archives, eventually developing his own style and sound: rustic, expressive and rich with nuances.


Francesca Ter-Berg

Francesca Ter-Berg (cello)

Francesca is a cellist and producer with an in-depth improvisation and collaborative practice. She is known for her specialism in Eastern European traditional music (specifically Klezmer and Roma) which she has been studying in-depth for over 10 years. Her improvisation practice stems from studying with renowned improvisors in the US and UK—including Vijay Iyer,Okkyung Lee and Ashley Paul. Since graduating from Goldsmiths University of London with a Masters in Popular Music, she has explored working with live electronics, studio composition and writing music for film, documentaries and video games.

Francesca is one half of critically acclaimed duo project, Fran & Flora, alongside violinist Flora Curzon—with whom she has recorded and performed extensively across the UK, Europe and North America. Their debut album, Unfurl (2019) was BBC Radio 3 Music Planet’s ‘Album Of The Year’ and they appeared live on BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour and Cerys Matthews 6Music show. Beyond Fran & Flora, Francesca has collaborated with groundbreaking and genre-defying UK and international artists, including Hejira, Imogen Heap, Talvin Singh, Frank London, Denai Moore, Riz Ahmed and Portico Quartet.


Jeff Warschauer (guitar/mandolin)

Cantor Jeff Warschauer graduated in May 2015 from the H.L. Miller Cantorial School at the Jewish Theological Seminary. Jeff serves as Cantor at Congregation Keneseth Israel in Allentown, PA. He has also served congregations in Bath and Portland, ME, New London, CT, Youngstown, OH, Manchester, VT, Massapequa, NY and Brooklyn, NY.

In the Yiddish and klezmer scene, Jeff is internationally renowned as a mandolinist, guitarist, singer and teacher. He is on the faculty of Columbia University, and is a Founding Artistic Director and Senior Artistic Advisor of the KlezKanada Institute for Yiddish/Jewish Culture. One half of the Strauss/Warschauer Duo, Jeff was a long-time member of the Klezmer Conservatory Band.

Jeff speaks Yiddish, and has researched and collected Yiddish and Hebrew songs and instrumental melodies since the mid-1980s. He is a graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music, and has studied Jewish culture, languages, and religion at the Conservative Yeshiva, Oxford University, Columbia University, the University of Haifa and Tufts University. He has received numerous awards in Music, Community Activities, Judaica and Musicology, as well as the Amalgamated Bank Prize in Yiddish, a Massachusetts Folk Arts Fellowship, and the KlezKanada Distinguished Service Award.


Szilvia Csaranko (accordion/piano)

Szilvia Csaranko lives in Hannover and is a qualified cultural educator, accordionist and pianist. After completing her classical piano training she shifted her artistic focus to researching and teaching traditional music styles. She founded the klezmer-Balkan-Alpen-folk band A Glezele Vayn in 2004 and plays in numerous folk and world music projects at home and abroad. She is the musical director of an 80-piece Klezmer orchestra in Erfurt: www.klezwecan.de


Laurent Clouet (clarinet)

Eclectic clarinetist and saxophonist, Laurent Clouet was formed through his travels and his encounters in the music of oral traditions.

For the past fifteen years, he has specialized in Eastern European music, working alongside some major performers of this repertoire: Selim Sesler and Serdar Pazarcıoğlu in Turkey, Nikola Iliev and Petar Voinikov in Bulgaria, Manos Achalinotopoulos and Stavros Pazarentsis in Greece.

He regularly gives workshops and conferences around klezmer and Balkan music in France and abroad, in particular for the DROM association. He was also invited to supervise workshops for the musical education system of the Philharmonie de Paris “Demos”.

He is involved in many groups with diverse aesthetics such as Bey.Ler.Bey Trio, Le Bal Takamba and Infernal Biguine (Creole music), Beigale Orkestra and the Waxband Projekt (klezmer music)… He is also invited to participate as soloist at concerts and recordings in France, Turkey, Morocco, India.


Mark Rubin (Bass)

Mark Rubin

Oklahoma-born, Texas-reared, and now living in New Orleans, multi-instrumentalist Mark Rubin is an unabashed Southern Jew, known equally for his muscular musicianship and larger-than-life persona. Over an accomplished 30+ year career, he has accompanied or produced a virtual who’s-who of American traditional music, while straddling numerous musical genres, including Country, Western Swing, Bluegrass, Cajun, Tex-Mex, Polka, Klezmer, Roma, and more. He is perhaps best known for co-founding the notorious proto-Americana band Bad Livers, though his more recent work as a first call tuba and bass player in the klezmer music scene has now earned him equivalent notoriety.

His credits in the Jewish music world include long time collaborations with Frank London’s Klezmer Brass All-Stars, The Other Europeans, and Andy Statman, as well as two decades on faculty at KlezKamp. He has been featured performer and instructor with multiple appearances at Yiddish Summer Weimar, KlezFest London, KlezMore Vienna, Klezmer Festival Furth, Festival of Jewish Culture Krakow among others. Jew of Oklahoma debuted as a special feature at Toronto’s Ashkenaz Festival in 2016.

Today, he lives and works as a professional musician in New Orleans and makes a study of the musical traditions and cultures of South Louisiana.

Since 1996, Rubin has been a driving force in the “klezmer” music world as a bassist, tuba player, instructor and pedagogue. His credits in the Jewish music world include long time collaborations with Frank London’s Klezmer Brass All-Stars, The Other Europeans, and Andy Statman, as well as two decades on faculty at KlezKamp. He has been featured performer and instructor with multiple appearances at Toronto’s Ashkenaz Festival, Yiddish Summer Weimar, KlezFest London, KlezMore Wein, Klezmer Festival Furth, Festival of Jewish Culture Krakow among others. His Jew of Oklahoma show debuted as a special feature at Ashkenaz in 2016. For three summers in the mid 2000s he toured with the Serbian Romani Brass Band Boban Markovic Orchestra in the “Brotherhood of Brass” project.


Flora Curzon

London based violinist performing on both ‘modern’ and ‘historical’ violin set ups, which means Flora plays on both metal strings and gut strings, and with a range of bows from different eras.

Flora’s main musical interests are in early music (in particular, music from the Baroque and Classical periods), 20th century and contemporary music, traditional Jewish and Romanian music, folk music from across the British Isles and free improvisation. Flora enjoys discovering music that is being made today in response to life around us across all genres, and exploring traditional music from around the world.

Flora has performed internationally as an orchestral musician, chamber musician, solo artist, folk fiddler, improviser and singer, as well as with my experimental folk duo, Fran & Flora, Highlights include performing solo at the Wigmore Hall and Kings Place, as well as live on Jools Holland, Tiny Desk, BBC Radio 4s Woman’s Hour and BBC6 Music with Cerys Matthews. Flora has released albums including Unfurl (Fran & Flora, Feb 2019), and Meditations and Laments (Gaia Duo, Dec 2019), and was interviewed on BBC Radio 3 This Classical Life with Jess Gillam in February 2020.


Josh Middleton

Josh Middleton is an accordionist and composer based in London. As a professional accordionist Josh specialises in Klezmer and East European Folk styles, however, he also plays a wide range of styles such as English/Scottish/Irish Folk, French Chanson, Manouche Jazz. He has been performing music professionally since the age of 14, graduated from the School of Oriental and African Studies with a first class degree in Ethnomusicology, and has since been working as a freelance musician while studying both Klezmer and Bulgarian music, the latter at the Academy of Music, Dance and Fine Arts, Plovdiv. Josh has worked with many Klezmer and Balkan music ensembles such as She’koyokh and The London Klezmer Quartet, has shared a stage with Klezmorim such as Frank London and Merlin Shepherd, taught at Klezfest London alongside Klezmer scholars such as Alan Bern and Joel Rubin, and recorded for artists as diverse as DJ Vadim and Kadialy Kouyate.

Josh also works as a composer on the Puppet Theatre Barge, performing and writing music for puppet shows. He has extensive experience composing and performing music for the stage, writing and touring with puppet companies such as Movingstage, String Theatre, Mirth and Misery, Drew Colby, and the Bus King Theatre. He has worked with theatre companies such as Footfall Theatre and Nick Cassenbaum Ltd, and written and performed live music for story telling with The Embers Collective and for live film scores with The Cabinet of Living Cinema. Before the pandemic he was working on a production of Paula Vogel’s play Indecent at the Menier Chocolate Factory.

He presents world music podcast ‘The Wind The Shakes’ from Brush and Bow. You can listen HERE.

In addition to accordion, Josh also plays keys, guitar, Irish whistle, harp, trumpet, Bulgarian bagpipe, and has a great passion for singing folk songs in English and Bulgarian!

He loves the delicate counterpoint between two or even three clashing patterns on a person.


Dan Gouly

Daniel is an experienced professional clarinetist, educator and electronic music composer and performer with a Masters in Music (Ethnomusicology and Performance) from SOAS, University of London and a PhD from the Open University, supported by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. He specialises in performing in world music styles from across Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean, and has studied with, and played alongside, legendary Klezmer musicians such as Alan Bern, Frank London, Merlin Shepherd, Christian Dawid, and Joel Rubin. Currently he is performing with Don Kipper, a successful group playing festivals and concerts across the UK and Europe. He loves connecting music and theatre through his work across the UK, the US, and Europe with Bubble Schmeisis and Oily Cart’s Jamboree and writing a diverse range of music for Puppetry. He is also an experienced performer for silent film working with a range of ensembles such as The Tsvey Kipperim, The Cabinet of the Living Cinema and The Prince Achmed Orchestra at festivals and venues across the UK and has performed as a soloist at a variety of venues. He also has experience with studio and television work and is available for teaching, composition and sound design commissions. His most recent project, supported by a ‘Developing Your Creative Practice’ award from Arts Council England, explores the intersection of Chinese and Jewish folk music traditions alongside NYC-based sound artist, composer, and vocalist Lemon Guo.