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(PDF) (DOC) (JPG)February 26, 2003

(Mahwah) – The Gross Center for Holocaust & Genocide Studies at Ramapo College of New Jersey will co-sponsor a series of programs exploring the Holocaust experience in new ways:

Sunday, March 16, 7 p.m.
Glen Rock Jewish Center
682 Harristown Road, Glen Rock, NJ 07452
Poland Is Confronted with its Past: the Debate on the Massacre at Jedwabne”
Jan T. Gross, Professor of Politics and European Studies, New York University
Author of Neighbors: The Destruction of the Jewish Community in Jedwabne, Poland

Thursday, March 20, 7 p.m.
Ramapo College, York Room, The Mansion
The Last Expression: Art and Auschwitz
(Based on an exhibition at The Brooklyn Museum, March 7-June 15, curated by the presenter, of 200 works by artists who either perished in the camps or were among the few who survived the camps.)
Marilyn Kushner, Department Head and Curator of Prints and Drawings, Brooklyn Museum

Tuesday, April 29, 7 p.m.
Temple Beth Haverim
280 Ramapo Valley Road (Rt. 202), Mahwah, NJ 07430
In Commemoration of Yom HaShoah
In Cooperation with Temple Beth Haverim of Mahwah
Ghetto Tango: Art at the Edge of the Abyss
Adrienne Cooper and Zalmen Mlotek, renowned interpreters of Yiddish music

The talk by Jan Gross on March 16 at the Glen Rock Jewish Center will delve into the soul-searching in Poland following the publication of his book on the wartime massacre of Jews in the northeastern Polish town of Jedwabne. Namely, the research conducted by Gross revealed for the first time the full story of how on July 10, 1941 the Jews of Jedwabne were murdered by their Polish neighbors.

Marilyn Kushner’s slide presentation on March 20 at Ramapo College will showcase the exhibition she has mounted at the Brooklyn Museum (from March 7 to June 15) of two- and three-dimensional art created by Holocaust victims (including Jews, resistance fighters, and Gypsies) who were interned at Auschwitz and other concentration camps. Kushner will show how, in the face of imminent death, Nazi concentration camp victims produced art that served many functions – catharsis, documentation, resistance, decoration, official commission, and as objects to be traded on the black market. Most of the 200 works were retrieved from German archives and have never been seen by the public.

On April 29 at Temple Beth Haverim of Mahwah, in commemoration of Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Remembrance Day), Adrienne Cooper and Zalmen Mlotek will recreate a remarkable piece of musical and Holocaust history in song and words. Torn from their homes and crammed into the ghettoes of Poland and Lithuania, Jewish musicians, professional and amateur, quickly formed unofficial cabarets as well as orchestras and choruses. Performing both new pieces and adapting standards, much of their music reflected or satirized their bleak circumstances. More importantly perhaps, it lifted the spirits of their audiences.

Adrienne Cooper, one of the most influential performers of Yiddish vocal music today, appears on concert, theater, and club stages around the world. Her singing has been featured on film, radio, television and some 20 recordings including Partisans of Vilna, the only Yiddish recording ever nominated for a Grammy. Cooper has performed and recorded with, among others, The Klezmatics, Hasidic New Wave, The Flying Bulgar Klezmer Band, Kapelye, and Frank London’s Shekhine Big Band.

Zalmen Mlotek, an internationally recognized authority on Yiddish folk and theater music, is a leading figure in the Jewish theater and concert worlds. Raised in a prominent Yiddish-speaking family renowned for their Jewish songbook collections, he has been an innovative force in bringing contemporary musical theater pieces about the Jewish-American experience to Broadway and to communities nationwide.

The series is free and open to the public. School groups are welcome. For further details, please contact Dr. Michael A. Riff at (201) 684-7409; mriff@ramapo.edu.

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Ramapo College of New Jersey is the state’s premier public liberal arts college and is committed to academic excellence through interdisciplinary and experiential learning, and international and intercultural understanding. The College is ranked #1 among New Jersey public institutions by College Choice, has been named one of the 50 Most Beautiful College Campuses in America by CondeNast Traveler, and is recognized as a top college by U.S. News & World Report, Kiplinger’s, Princeton Review and Money magazine, among others. Ramapo College is also distinguished as a Career Development College of Distinction by CollegesofDistinction.com, boasts the best campus housing in New Jersey on Niche.com, and is designated a “Military Friendly College” in Victoria Media’s Guide to Military Friendly Schools.

Established in 1969, Ramapo College offers bachelor’s degrees in the arts, business, data science, humanities, social sciences and the sciences, as well as in professional studies, which include business, education, nursing and social work. In addition, the College offers courses leading to teacher certification at the elementary and secondary levels, and offers graduate programs leading to master’s degrees in Accounting, Business Administration, Creative Music Technology, Data Science, Educational Technology, Educational Leadership, Nursing, Social Work and Special Education, as well as a post-master’s Doctor of Nursing Practice.

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