CANCELLED The Cabaret Goes to the Ghetto: The Fate of the Great Polish Jewish Songbook – Lecture by Beth Holmgren
We are sorry to inform you that due to unforeseen circumstances we have to postpone Prof. Beth Holmgren’s lecture. We hope to reschedule it and will notify you of the revised date and time as soon as possible.
Place: Thomson 101 on the UW Campus
Date: March 11, 2019
Time: 6:00 pm
Event is free and open to the public
This talk explores how acculturated Jewish lyricists defined and celebrated the look and lifestyle of modern Warsaw, Poland’s most cosmopolitan city between the world wars. Though their songs were never expressly identified as Jewish, these writers, in effect, had created a songbook roughly equivalent to the Great American Songbook composed in the first half of the twentieth century on the other side of the Atlantic. The talk subsequently examines how this Great Polish Jewish Songbook resonated for its authors after the Nazis had forced them from their beloved big city into the Ghetto in 1940, where they lived, worked, and died in close quarters with an extraordinary spectrum of Jews from elsewhere. Did these artists continue to cherish or disown their creation? Did Polish history recognize their authorship after the Holocaust?
Beth Holmgren is a professor of Polish and Russian cultures at Duke University. She is the author of Starring Madame Modjeska: On Tour in Poland and America (2012) and Warsaw is My Country: The Story of Krystyna Bierzynska, 1928-1945 (2018). Her recent work focuses on the art and experience of acculturated Jewish entertainers in Warsaw cabaret from 1919 to 1945.
Picture: A musical debate takes place at Warsaw’s Banda cabaret. From left: pianist Karol Gimpel, musician Mieczysław Hoherman, music director Marian Hemar, composer Władysław Dan-Daniłowski, and poet Julian Tuwim; photo: NAC National Digital Archive / www.audiovis.nac.gov.