The Top Three
URI GURVICH – KINSHIP
The music of Israeli-born saxophonist and composer Uri Gurvich is a surprising multicultural amalgam. Classified loosely as “meta-world jazz”, it blends Middle Eastern and Hebraic folk melodies with the musical traditions of all of Gurvich’s bandmates: pianist Leo Genovese and vocalist Bernardo Palombo, both Argentinian, Bulgarian bassist Peter Slavov and A-list Cuban drummer Francisco Mela. In his new release, the aptly titled “Kinship,” Gurvich “manages to find common ground on which to unite his group and bring every musical aspect in play together” (AllAboutJazz). — Friday-Saturday, Aug. 25-26, 8:30 p.m., The Stone @ The New School, 55 W. 13th St., thestonenyc.com.
ANAT COHEN, SUMMER STAGE
Here’s a rare summer gem: Israeli-American clarinet/saxophone queen Anat Cohen — “a present-day multicultural wonder,” says The New Yorker — leading a tentet of strings, horns, percussion and keyboards in a free outdoor show; the ensemble produces a blend of traditional jazz, post-bop, Brazilian and Middle Eastern music. Cohen, now a staple on the jazz scene, has been voted Clarinetist of the Year nine years running by the Jazz Journalists Association, and has topped both the critics’ and readers’ polls in the clarinet category in DownBeat magazine every year since 2011. “With the clarinet she becomes a singer, a dancer, a poet, a mad scientist, laughing — musically — with the sheer delight of reaching that new place, that new feeling, with each chorus,” JazzTimes wrote. — Friday, Aug. 25, 7-9 p.m., SummerStage, Marcus Garvey Park, 124th Street and Fifth Avenue, cityparksfoundation.org
Lead by trumpeter and composer Ben Holmes, with Brad Shepik on guitar and Shane Shanahan on drums, this new trio composed of veteran klezmerists presents a selection of klez modes transposed to unusual and difficult keys. “With oodles of flats and sharps, and also the musicians have to count really hard, but it’s super fun to listen to anyway,” according to the band’s own billing. — Friday, Sept. 1, 8 p.m., Barbès, 376 Ninth St., Brooklyn, (347) 422-0248, barbesbrooklyn.com. $10.
“Lili Marlene” was the title of a World War II-era German song that became popular with both Axis and Allies. Set in pre-WWII Berlin, this Off-Broadway musical of the same name (with book and music by Michael Antin) centers on the fictional character of Rosie Pen (Amy Londyn), a Jewish cabaret singer whose rendition of the song makes it famous. With Nazism on the rise, Rosie’s unlikely love affair with a young German count named Willi (Clint Hromsco) drives them both to seek ways out of the country. — Tuesdays, 7 p.m., St. Luke’s Theatre, 308 W. 46th St., (212) 239-6200, Telecharge.com.
THE AMERICAN SEPHARDI MUSIC FESTIVAL
Baritone David Serero — star of the Ladino versions of “The Merchant of Venice,” “Nabucco” and “Othello” — directs the inaugural American Sephardi Music Festival. Produced by the American Sephardi Federation, the three-day event features a multinational cast of Sephardic music stars, including American composer/singer-songwriter and guitarist Gerard Edery, French/Moroccan singer Françoise Atlan, the Arabic Jazz Ensemble Nashaz, Israeli-American trumpeter Itamar Borochov and more. Serero closes the festival with a mix of opera and comedy. —Sunday-Monday, Aug. 27-28. Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 294-8301, programs.cjh.org.
ISLE OF KLEZBOS
Hailed by New York Music Daily as “one of New York’s most exciting groups, in any style,” this acclaimed, all-female klezmer powerhouse “tests the elasticity of the genre” (The New Yorker) with both irreverence and respect. Tune into their neo-traditional dance rollicks, mystical melodies, Second Avenue-Yiddish swing, re-grooved standards and genre-defying originals. — Sunday, Aug. 27, 10 a.m. doors, 11 a.m. concert, City Winery, 155 Varick St., (212), 608-0555, citywinery.com. $10.
As both an archivist for YIVO and a klezmer musician, French violinist Eleonore Biezunski (Klezmographers, Shtetl Stompers, Shpilkes) has been exploring Yiddish traditions of old and new for quite some time now. In her new project, Yerushe (Heritage) she is joined by Lauren Brody (vocals, accordion) and Joanna Sternberg (vocals, double bass). Together they will explore the heritage of women’s Yiddish folksongs, orally transmitted to them or carefully preserved by folklorists. — Sunday, Aug. 27, 7 p.m., Barbès, 376 Ninth St., (347) 422-0248, barbesbrooklyn.com. $10.
Like most kids on her kibbutz, Tali Rubinstein began playing the recorder in second grade. Unlike most, she never stopped. Drawing upon her classical training, jazz inclinations and Israeli and Middle Eastern upbringing, Rubinstein’s recorder-centric originals and covers “laid to rest the notion of the recorder as a beginner’s toy,” says JazzTimes. — Sunday, Aug. 27, 5 p.m., Rockwood Music Hall, 196 Allen St., (212) 477-4155, rockwoodmusichall.com.
Recently hailed as “one of New York’s more interesting and original artists” (New York Music Daily), Israeli-American singer-songwriter and pianist Noa Fort writes eclectic, dark, jazz-influenced songs, with touches of rock, punk and ska. — Monday, Aug. 28, 7 p.m., Rockwood Music Hall, 196 Allen St., (212) 477-4155, rockwoodmusichall.com.
Israeli-born saxophonist/composer/conceptualist Michael Attias leads a versatile reeds-bass-drums outfit dedicated as much to thoughtful hushes as bursts of rugged expressionism. “Like a high-quality electronic product manufactured by the Panasonic Corporation, the career of alto saxophonist Michaël Attias has always involved being slightly ahead of his time,” says JazzWord. — Tuesday, Aug. 29, 7 p.m., Barbès, 376 Ninth St., (347) 422-0248, barbesbrooklyn.com. $10.
SLAVIC SOUL PARTY
The acclaimed Brooklyn-based Balkan brass plays their fiery signature blend of Balkan brass, funk grooves, Roma, klezmer and jazz. — Tuesdays, 9 p.m., Barbès, 376 Ninth St., Brooklyn, (347) 422-0248, barbesbrooklyn.com. $10.
Playing out more like a spy novel than a museum show, this multimedia exhibit features recently declassified materials charting the tracking, capture, extradition and trial of Adolf Eichmann — Through Dec. 22, Museum of Jewish Heritage, 36 Battery Place, (646) 437-4202, mjhnyc.org.
FLORINE STETTHEIMER: PAINTING POETRY
Through her critically acclaimed poems, paintings and drawings, as well as a selection of costume and theater designs, photographs and ephemera, The Jewish Museum offers a timely reconsideration of poet/painter Florine Stettheimer, an icon of Jazz Age New York. — Through Sept. 24, The Jewish Museum, 1109 Fifth Ave., (212) 423-3200, thejewishmuseum.org. (See story on page 41.)
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