BBC broadcasts music from the Holocaust

BBC Radio 3 starts broadcasting performances of music from the Holocaust today in anticipation of International Holocaust Memorial Day on January 27.

The performances are taken from a concert at London’s Wigmore Hall earlier this month at which the ORT Marks Fellowship was launched to support scholarship on the theme of World ORT’s Music and the Holocaust website.

Choral, chamber and solo performers provided exquisite renditions of works written by some extraordinary talents lost during the Shoah as well as pieces inspired by the tragic horror of what happened.

Those who were unable to attend the concert – as well as members of the capacity audience who would like to savour the music again – should tune in to Radio 3 every evening this week. A selection of performances will be broadcast immediately following Radio 3 in Concert, which starts at 7.30pm (London time).

Tonight you can listen to Dovid Ayznshtat’s Cantata: Chad Gadya performed by The Clothworkers Consort of Leeds with Benjamin Nabarro (violin), Krzysztof Chorzelski (viola), and Gemma Rosefield (cello), conducted by Stephen Muir. The piece was arranged by Dr Muir, who discovered the music in a manuscript folder in Cape Town in 2012.

In addition, historian Dr Shirli Gilbert, who curates the Music and the Holocaust website, will present Radio 3’s Sunday Feature, ‘Music on the Brink of Destruction, at 6.45pm (London time) on January 22.

In the 45-minute programme, Dr Gilbert, Karten Associate Professor at the University of Southampton, will analyse the rich musical history produced by those subjected to the worst of the Nazis’ persecution.

“The musical works these prisoners created are extraordinary documents from the time: fragments recovered from the rubble of war and genocide; monuments to the lives that were destroyed,” according to the BBC Radio 3 website.

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