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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000898.txt from 2003/06

From: Kenneth Wolman <>
Subj: Re: [kl] I need help!
Date: Wed, 25 Jun 2003 12:50:21 -0400

At 04:07 PM 6/25/2003 +0000, you wrote:

>If anyone can give me any book or movie titles that deal with Holocaust
>musicians, or even better, Rosemarie Gumpert, I would appreciate the help.
>Also, if anyone would be willing to send me their knowledge on the
>subject, that would be good too. I will appreciate any help!

Two thoughts:

Fania Fenelon, "Playing for Time." A half-Jewish French musician and
resistance fighter caught and sent to Auschwitz. She said her resistance
activity saved her: she was simply incarcerated instead of being killed
straightaway, the likely outcome if she'd been sent there as a Jew. She
was drafted to play in the camp orchestra. One of her fellow musicians as
Gustav Mahler's niece. It was made into a film with none other than
Vanessa Redgrave.

Josef Bor, "The Terezin Requiem." It would take all day to explain
Terezin/Theresienstadt, the Nazi's "show camp" in Czechoslovakia. It was
an 18th century village turned into a camp for prominent Jewish writers,
musicians, intellectuals. When the International Red Cross inspected,
Terezin is what the Nazis showed them. The visitors obviously missed the
rats, lice, and rampant typhus. The book is about a performance of Verdi's
Requiem performed in this obscene Potemkin village. I can only imagine the
emotional force of passages like "Dies Irae" and "Libera me, Domine!" in a
place like that. After the performance the soloists (the chorus?
conductor?) were put on a train to Auschwitz, where they went sent to the
gas chambers.

Footnote--my older son visited Theresienstadt in 1999. He said it was
terrifying and felt full of ghosts. This is not a kid given over to mysticism.

There probably are many more things about musicians and the Holocaust (or


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