This year, I’m honored to have been invited to play music for two Yiddish dance sessions as part of the Uriel Weinreich Program in Yiddish Language, Literature, and Culture at New York University. This is a joint summer program offered by NYU together with the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research.
I’m playing music for the sessions lead by dance ethnographer Jill Gellerman, who has done incredible work researching Hasidic dance.
The first session took place yesterday, and we focused on some more traditional style Yiddish songs like “A Yingele, A Meydele” (an adaptation of “Gants Kley Koydesh Geyn Tantsen”) and “Dos Tsigele”. Jill and I learned both of these songs/dances when we participated in the dance workshop at Yiddish Summer Weimar last year.
Jill also covered some Hasidic-style freylakh and honga style dances, as well as some other hasidic dances like Hop Khazak and a “Hakhnoe Tants” better known as “Iber un Unter” or “Reb Elimelekh’s Tants”.
The session was a lot of fun.
Next week, we’re looking at some contemporary Yiddish adaptations of pop music which should prove quite interesting.