Hello and welcome to this month's edition of the JMI Newsletter.
Despite the drizzle, things are most definitely hotting up in the JMI office as we move into summer. There are still a few seats available for the very special Gala Performance of our new commission Drawing Life at JW3 on 2nd July. This will be a great evening that includes supper with the artists, so do please contact us if you are interested in taking one of the last remaining places.

We are also pleased to be partnering with JW3  and the Amy Winehouse Foundation for a Musical Tribute to Amy Winehouse on 8th June as part of the Made in Britain series. Artists include Ian Shaw, The Chain, Jack Tyson Charles and Kathryn Williams – plus an amazing live band led by Grant Windsor (BBC Big Band) featuring Sam Lewis on guitar (Paloma Faith, KT Tunstall), Ali Friend on bass (Red Snapper, Beth Orton) and Daisy Palmer on drums (Goldfrapp).
Our summer schools in Yiddish language and Yiddish song are selling fast so do get in touch with the office as soon as possible to secure your place.
Our brilliant and lovely Administrator Louise will be moving on from JMI next month to pursue her career in alternative therapies.  She has been such a fantastic member of the team and we are very sad to see her go. We are looking for an equally super person to take her place – so if you know anyone who might fit the bill then please do send them our way.

All best wishes

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Gala Performance and Supper 
Following the success of the Drawing Life preview at Kings Place at the opening night of Jewish Book Week, JMI is proud to present the Gala Performance of Drawing Life, followed by a celebratory supper with the artists. Drawing Life is a new multimedia performance piece co-created by Jocelyn Pook, dramaturg Emma Bernard and visual artist Dragan Aleksic, is inspired by the collection of poems and drawings made by the children imprisoned in the Terezin concentration camp. This is a rare opportunity to see our latest commission on stage at JW3.For more information on Drawing Life please see here
  Event info:

Date: 2nd July
Time: 730pm
Venue: JW3
Call 020 7898 4307




Made in London

An evening celebrating the incredible talent of Amy Winehouse presented by JW3 and the Jewish Music Institute.
The event will feature a house band of some London’s finest musicians, led by Grant Windsor (BBC Big Band, Clare Teal, Jose James) and featuring JMI artistic director Sophie Solomon. Guest artists include Ian Shaw, The Chain, Jack Tyson Charles and Kathryn Williams plus an amazing live band featuring Sam Lewis on guitar (Paloma Faith, KT Tunstall), Ali Friend on bass (Red Snapper, Beth Orton) and Daisy Palmer on drums (Goldfrapp), along with some special guest vocalists who will be performing songs from Winehouse’s back catalogues as well as some of the tracks which most inspired her.
This will be followed by an auction in aid of The Amy Winehouse Foundation. In association with JW3, JMI and the Amy Winehouse Foundation.


Date: 8th June
Time: 8-11pm
Venue: JW3
Price: £10/20


Yiddish Language Summer School
Discover JMI's famous full immersion courses in Yiddish Language, Song and Culture for people of all  ages, levels and backgrounds, where even complete beginners learn to speak, read, write, sing and even dream in Yiddish in a week. Ot Azoy Yiddish language classes are held at 4 levels, led by world renowned Yiddish Lecturer Helen Beer and her distinguished team of fellow Yiddishists, Sonia Pinkusowitz-Dratwa, Annick Prime-Margules, Lily Kahn and Barry Davis. Shura Lipovsky, Director of The Golden Peacock (Goldene Pave), will also teach a daily session of Yiddish through song. This year we are pleased to welcome to the faculty Annick Prime-Margules of The Medem Yiddish Institute in Paris. Last summer the course was full, attracting participants  from countries as diverse as Canada, Sweden, Germany, Lithuania and Scotland, so we recommend early booking. We also have an interview podcast with course director Dr Helen Beer and UK celebrity Yiddishist David Schneider which you can listen to here


Date: Sun 10th - Fri 15th Aug
Venue: SOAS
Price: £145/245


Yiddish Song Summer School
Our annual summer song school returns this year with the addition of new faculty, courses and syllabus. Once again the course will provide complete immersion in Yiddish song and song culture. Each day will start with a repertoire class and will be followed by teaching classes on roots, modality and traditions. The change comes during the afternoon when following repertoire classes also attended by Ot Azoy students, there will be a master class with our esteemed international faculty of acclaimed Yiddish singers, Shura Lipovsky, Polina Shepherd and 2014 Songlines Awards Nominee Karsten Troyke. Singers will also be taught Yiddish for Singers with Helen Beer and no day will be complete without joining in Polina's Yiddish Choir. There are also social events, Yiddish Theatre, Film, Concerts and much more, so do not delay and book your place early.



Date: Sun 10th - Fri 15th Aug
Venue: SOAS
Price: £145/245


Guy Schalom is leader of Egyptian urban dance music veterans the Baladi Blues Ensemble to launch their new album; Baladi Blues Reloaded, in an on-stage collaboration with members of the award-winning Transglobal Underground and Kamel Nitrate. Guy has been described as “one of the most interesting and versatile percussionists working in the UK today” (fROOTS)

Guy Schalom (Darabuka) with:
Ahmed el Saidi (Saxophone)
Elgamal El Kordi (Accordion)
Aly el Minyawi (Doholla/Duff)
Adam Warne (Riq/Doholla)
With members of Transglobal Underground and Kamel Nitrate.

To hear Guy in interview from last years Songlines Encounters Festival please visit the podcast here


Date: 13th June
Time: 730pm
Venue: Hoxton Underbelly
Price: £12.50/£15


Join our Yiddish choir

Led by Polina Shepherd, one of Europe’s leading musicians in the field, JMI’s Zingt! The People’s Chorus at JW3 is open to all. Participants learn traditional and new Yiddish songs, nigunim and specific ornamentations of this singing style. They sing Yiddish songs in 1-4 parts with and without sheet music, and nigunim mostly accompanied by piano but also a cappella.


Dates: 24th June & 15th July
Times: 645pm-845pm
Venue: JW3
Price: £10




Future music

This summer, MyIsrael is bringing the Musicians of Tomorrow over from Israel for a UK tour that includes performances in Leeds, Manchester and London. The Musicians of Tomorrow are a group of child musicians who were each discovered and trained by Anna Rosnovsky, a retired first violinist of the Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra. These musically gifted children, mostly from tough socio-economic backgrounds, are aged from seven upwards and travel from all over the North of Israel to attend daily music lessons. The tour, sponsored by Donna and Trevor Leigh in memory of Erica Lane will be the first time that many of the youngsters have been in the UK. There will be two performances on July 6th at LJCC's Ivy House in Hampstead - a 3pm interactive concert for families and a separate evening programme from 8pm. There will also be a further programme at Wimbledon Synagogue on the following day. Please see the event link for more details. We also interviewed the programme's benefactor Trevor Leigh and MyIsrael's Hayley Sussman on this exciting project and that podcast can be heard here


Date: 6th July
Time: 3pm & 8pm
Venue: LJCC, Ivy House


Klezmer with Ilana Cravitz
Come and discover the joys of klezmer with fiddle player Ilana Cravitz one of the UK’s top teachers and performers. Over the course of the week you’ll learn how to play the soulful and celebratory music of Jews from Eastern Europe from the last century. We’ll be looking at tunes, ornamentation and accompaniment, as well as dance steps to go with the melodies that form this rich & enjoyable musical tradition.
Open to all instruments and ages. Minimum instrumental proficiency Grade 5 or equivalent; no klezmer experience necessary. If you would like to hear a podcast with Ilana that we recorded for last years course then please go here

In association with the Jewish Music Institute and SOAS Music department.


Date: 7th - 11th July
Time: 7pm-9pm
Venue: SOAS
Price: £70-90


Once again, we are delighted to give you notice that booking is now open for the 9th Annual European Cantors Convention in Budapest 10 – 14 July 2014 at the Bethlen Square Synagogue. Budapest has some of the most beautiful synagogues in Europe and an outstanding musical tradition. This year's theme is "The High Holydays: Inspire and Be Inspired". Organised and hosted by the Central and Eastern European branch of ECA, headed by Rabbi/Cantor David Schwezoff and Cantor Laszlo Fekete. In a recent statement the ECA said, "We are honoured to have as our guest teachers this year, the revered cantors, Asher Hainovitz of Jerusalem and Yaakov Motzen of Florida. They will be supported by Toronto’s Eric Moses and others. Sessions include nusach and davening as well as masterclasses and a session on ‘Leadership, Goal Setting, and Job Satisfaction’." This is a must for all cantors and those involved or with an interest in synagogue music. If you would like to hear Central Synagogue Chazen Steven Leas talk about last year's conference and how he feels that music is central to worship, please listen here


Date: 10th-14th July
Venue: Dohány Street Synagogue, Budapest
Price: £145-245





Office Administrator

The JMI team announce the departure of our highly valued Administrator Louise Shiels who has been with JMI since 2012 and is moving on to pursue her career in other areas. We thank her for her care, hard work and the energy she has brought to JMI and wish her all the very best for the future. There is therefore a unique opportunity for someone special to join JMI. We are looking for an exceptional administrator with proven experience to fill the role. For more information on the vacancy and how to apply please visit the recruitment page here


With numerous events of all sizes happening throughout 2014 celebrating JMI’s thirtieth year, we are looking for volunteers to help facilitate them.  Are you friendly, energetic, a good communicator with time on your hands?  Would you enjoy helping JMI deliver either one, or several of our wide-ranging programme of events which take place mainly in and around London?  We offer the opportunity to be part of music-filled events that move and educate audiences as well as wow critics.  If this sounds interesting to you please contact us here




Songlines Encounters Festival

Date: 5-7th June
Venue: Kings Place
More info: here
London Klezmer Quartet

Date: 12th June
Venue: Green Note
More info: here

Making Stalin Laugh

Date: 15th June through to 9th July
Venue: JW3
More info: here

Melange Collective

Date: 20th June
Venue: Wiltons Music Hall
More info: here


Date: 25th June
Venue: Vortex Jazz
More info: here

Laura Moody

Date: 26th June
Venue Wiltons Music Hall
More info: here

Guillermo Rozenthuler

Date: 27th June
Venue: Southbank Centre Foyer
More info: here

JMI radio brings you four features in one show. Our host Gil Karpas interview's a range of guests. We interview composer and academic Toby Young to hear about his passion for classical Jewish composers of the 20th and 21st century. Ahead of our Gala performance of Drawing Life at JW3 we interview dramaturg Emma Bernard to find out more about her work and specifically her role in bringing Drawing Life to the stage. The Musicians of Tomorrow project empowers disadvantaged children in Northern Israel to learn and develop their musical skills. We interview the people central in bringing their tour to the UK. Last and by no means least we interview our Ot Azoy course director Dr Helen Beer to find out what is in store for this years summer school and we also hear from the UK's best known celebrity Yiddishist David Schneider on the joys of Yiddish. The whole show and its constituent podcasts can be found here