Cafe International's series on Ukrainian music continues with a look at one of one of the giants of Yiddish folk music, Arkady Gendler – who was considered a living Alexandrine library of Yiddish song from Ukraine and Moldova.
Arkady Gendler was born in the town of Soroke in 1921 near the border of Moldova and Ukraine. During World War II, he served in the Red Army and helped liberate Ukraine from the Nazis, only to discover that most of his friends and family had been murdered during the Holocaust. After the war, He worked as a chemist in the town of Zaporizhzhia – the city with Europe’s largest Nuclear power plant.
After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Gendler spent his final decades teaching younger generations about the Yiddish culture in Ukraine and Molodova that was nearly destroyed during the Holocaust – and that is what we will hear about on today’s show - with guests Avia Moore (Artistic Director of KlezKanada, and assistant producer of Arkady Gendler's album "Yidishe Lider"), Eric Stein (Artistic Director of the Ashkenaz Festival and mandolinist who performed and recorded with Gendler), Sebastian Schulman (Executive Director of the KlezKanada Festival) and Christian Dawid (clarinetist and producer of Arkady Gendler's final CD, "Yidishe Lider").