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Susquehanna Life

Weis Center Brings Klezmer Music to Downtown Lewisburg

Feb 26, 2016 06:00PM ● By Erica Shames

World-renowned klezmer group, The Klezmatics, will perform on Wednesday, March 9 at 7:30 p.m. at the Campus Theatre in downtown Lewisburg as part of the Weis Center’s 2015-16 Series. There will be a free pre-performance talk with the artists from 6:45-7:15 p.m.

The Klezmatics are world-renowned and Grammy-winning superstars of the klezmer world. They erupted out of New York City’s East Village in 1986 and revitalized klezmer for the new century with music that is steeped in Eastern European Jewish tradition and spirituality, while incorporating contemporary themes such as human rights and anti-fundamentalism with eclectic musical influences including Arab, African, Latin and Balkan rhythms, jazz and punk. Often called a “Jewish roots band,” the Klezmatics have led a popular revival of this ages-old, nearly forgotten art form.

In the course of over twenty years they have released nine albums of wild, spiritual, provocative, reflective, and ecstatically danceable music, forever redefining and transcending traditional labels.

The Klezmatics have collaborated with numerous musical luminaries including folk hero Arlo Guthrie, classical legend Itzhak Perlman, Israeli pop icons Chava Albertstein and Ehud Banay, beat poet Allen Ginsberg, The Master Musicians of Jajouka, Ben Folds Five, and Kosher Gospel singer Joshua Nelson.

Time Out New York says, “The Klezmatics aren’t just the best band in the klezmer vanguard; on a good night, they can rank among the greatest bands on the planet.”

Today, with three original members—Lorin Sklamberg (lead vocals, accordion, guitar, piano), Frank London (trumpet, keyboards, vocals) and Paul Morrissett (bass, tsimbl, vocals)—still on board, alongside longtime members Matt Darriau (kaval, clarinet, saxophone, vocals) and Lisa Gutkin (violin, vocals), the Klezmatics are without a doubt the most successful proponents of klezmer music in the world.

The Klezmatics’ music is rooted in but is not a strictly traditional variety of the klezmer genre. Rather it is a comfortable hybrid that appeals equally to those with no previous exposure to the music and those already familiar with it.

Their work has extended to numerous theater, film, dance and television projects, including Pulitzer Prize Winning playwright Tony Kushner’s “A Dybbuk” and “It’s An Undoing World” and Pilobolus Dance Theatre’s “Davenen.”

The Klezmatics have reached millions through performances and features on CBS’s Late Night with David Letterman, PBS’ Great Performances, BBC’s Rhythms of the World, BBC’s John Peel Show, various NPR programs, CBS’s Nightwatch, and Sex and the City.

The Klezmatics have garnered numerous awards and accolades throughout their career, including a 2006 Grammy Award for Best Contemporary World Music Album, a New York Jewish Music Award, a GLAMA and the German Critics Award, and have topped the Billboard world music charts on numerous occasions.

General admission tickets for the performance are $10 for adults, $8 for seniors 62+, $5 for youth 18 and under, $5 for Bucknell employees and retirees (limit 2), free for Bucknell students (limit 2), and $5 for non-Bucknell college students (limit 2). Tickets can be purchased online at Bucknell.edu/BoxOffice or by calling 570-577-1000.

Tickets are also available in person from several locations including the Weis Center lobby (weekdays 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.) and the CAP Center Box Office, located on the ground floor of the Elaine Langone Center (weekdays 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.).

For more information about this performance contact Lisa Leighton, marketing and outreach director, at 570-577-3727 or lisa.leighton@bucknell.edu

The next event in the Weis Center’s 2015-16 Series is a family discovery and contemporary dance matinee by Pilobolus on Saturday, March 26 at 2 p.m. at the Weis Center.

For more information about the Weis Center for the Performing Arts, visit Bucknell.edu/WeisCenter or Facebook.com/WeisCenter.

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