Veretski Pass and San Francisco Choral Artists collaborate to present Lilith, the Night Demon in One Lewd Act, a magical folk opera based on the bawdy alternate Jewish story of creation. In association with the Jewish Music Festival, KlezCalifornia, and the City of Menlo Park.|
MORE about Lilith: Veretski Pass's newest and most daring project, produced in collaboration with San Francisco Choral Artists, is a folk opera that tells the story of Adam's first wife, in an adult, edgy alternate story of creation. Refusing to lie beneath Adam, Lilith flies off to the Red Sea creating then killing 100 demon babies a day, until the three angels sent by God negotiate a deal with her.
A World Premiere, starring the brilliant Michael Wex as the narrator, smoky Heather Klein as the wicked Lilith, and one-of-a-kind Anthony Russell as the frustrated Adam, with the relentless and sparkling voices of San Francisco Choral Artists, and of course, Veretski Pass, playing instruments that you won't believe or expect, plus a special appearance by 9-year-old Ariel Spagnolo as a savvy, young street vendor.
An ensemble of virtuosic multi-instrumentalists, Veretski Pass brings together Jewish and non-Jewish sounds from across Europe, offering a unique combination of pure musicianship and raw energy that has excited concertgoers across the world. The trio plays Old Country Music with origins in the Ottoman Empire, once fabled as the borderlands of the East and the West, in a true collage of Carpathian, Jewish, Rumanian, and Ottoman styles. The group's CDs have repeatedly been on the 10-best recording lists of journalists.
Michael Wex (Narrator), columnist, bon vivant, and raconteur, has been called "a Yiddish national treasure". He is author of "Born to Kvetch", the bestselling book ever written about Yiddish, and was hailed by The New York Times as "wise, witty and altogether wonderful". Wex has worked in virtually every area of contemporary Yiddish.
Heather Klein (Lilith) performs across the U.S., Canada, and Europe, both as a soloist and with musical groups and opera companies, though her passion has been Yiddish classical song. She has played the role of Rosie in the world premiere of "Ravensbruek Project," a cabaret opera based on the Holocaust, before a sold-out theater in Boston.
Anthony (Mordechai Tzvi) Russell (Adam) works primarily in the field of opera in the San Francisco Bay and New York Metro areas, and is one of the 20th century's most prolific performers of cantorial music, Chassidic nigunim, and Yiddish art song. He has appeared on stages of the JCC in Manhattan, Symphony Space, the Ashkenaz Festival and Ideacity Conference, KlezKanada in Laurentians, and the Montreal Jewish Music Festival.
San Francisco Choral Artists, a chamber ensemble of 24 professional-level singers under the baton of Artistic Director Magen Solomon, is widely recognized as one of the finest choral ensembles on the West Coast. SFCA has premiered over 230 works and recently won ASCAP's Award for Adventurous programming. SFCA performs unaccompanied and also cultivates unusual collaborations, performing with Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, The Alexander String Quartet, and Composers Inc, among others.
NOTES ABOUT THE LILITH STORY:
Lilith is the "alternate" Jewish story of creation, its earliest appearance being from the Babylonian Talmud, with references from Mesopotamia and the Dead Sea Scrolls. Created out of dust at the same time as Adam, Lilith refused to be subservient and was forced to flee, becoming a demonic woman, a killer of children and seductress of young men.
The composition uses biblical, mystical, magical, and structural elements from medieval works as well as from the Kamea (Heb. "amulet"), ritual objects in which charms against Lilith abound. The music weaves together ancient and modern motives and explores some of the lesser-known facets of Jewish mysticism and superstition, integrating them into a new composition that uses traditional East European Jewish music as well as modern compositional and improvisatory elements. A complete annotated, illustrated libretto by the renowned artist Phil Blank will be made available at the concert.
Menlo-Atherton Performing Arts Center at Menlo-Atherton High School
555 Middlefield Road (at Ravenswood)
Atherton, CA 94025
|Kid Friendly: No|