August 1 Thu 8 p.m. @mon ami
Berliner Goles (Diaspora Berlin)
Exiled Yiddish Poets in Weimar Berlin
Admission: 20 € / 11 €
>> Tickets online


In the 1920s and 30s, Berlin was an important center of Jewish and Yiddish life in Europe. The extraordinarily productive atmosphere of this city at the crossroads of East and West attracted numerous prominent Yiddish poets, actors and musicians – many for just a few years or months – and left a lasting impression on their work. Due to the low cost of printing during the Great Depression and its geographical position between East and West, Weimar-era Berlin quickly became the world center for Yiddish publishing. For its Yiddish writers, Berlin was a “diaspora” in a double sense: on one level, it evoked the transnational, virtual sense of belonging that was common to all the “republics” of Yiddishland, while on another, national-political level, it was a haven for Yiddish writers who had been exiled from all parts of Eastern Europe – especially Russia.

Yuri Vedenyapin is one of the most prominent experts of Yiddish literature in the world today. Far from being a stuffy academic, Yuri is an actor, ethnographer, singer, poet and storyteller whose wit and intellect never fail to captivate his audience – as anyone who has experienced his Late Night Cabaret will attest!

This project is a product of Yuri’s collaboration with two fellow Montrealers: actress, singer, and director Catherine Marmen and multi-instrumentalist Yoni Kaston (accordion and clarinet). Together, they present an evening of acting, singing, reading and pantomime that will allow you to immerse yourself in a different era and experience it in all its intensity, contradictions and timelessness. Exuding an aura of nostalgia and artistic discovery, the performance brings to life Yiddish poems and love stories; tangos, foxtrots and waltzes (in Yiddish, German, and Russian); traditional klezmer music and Yiddish songs both old and new (including some written especially for this evening).

The entire evening is in Yiddish – but don’t worry! With their mesmerizing stage presence, acting and pantomime, Yuri and Catherine make Yiddish storytelling understandable to everyone while remaining completely authentic (there will also be supertitles). Me meynt az me redt yidish!

Line up:

Yuri Vedenyapin (RUS/USA/CAN) - performer, vocals, co-director, script
Catherine Marmen (CAN) - performer, vocals, co-director
Yoni Kaston (CAN) - accordion, clarinet

Portrait of Moshe Kulbak: Anatoly Nalivaev

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