Blogcritics: Cellist Julian Schwarz on Joachim Stutschewsky and 20th-Century Jewish Music

Jon Sobel

Julian Schwarz is an award-winning cellist, an active soloist and chamber musician and a champion of new and unheralded music. Together with pianist Marika Bournaki, violinist Avi Nagin, and clarinetist Alec Manasse, he will present on Tuesday May 22 a concert sponsored by the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research, part of its Sidney Krum Young Artists Concert Series series and co-sponsored by American Society for Jewish Music. The program features compositions by Joachim Stutschewsky (1891-1982) and other 20th-century Jewish composers, much of whose music is today obscure, along with a new work written for the occasion by Israeli composer Ofer Ben-Amots. Neil W. Levin, YIVO’s Anne E. Leibowitz Visiting Professor-in-Residence in Music, will give a pre-concert lecture on the life, work, and artistic milieu of Stutschewsky, a composer whose influences ranged from Schoenberg to klezmer.

Julian Schwarz spoke with us about his approach to playing Stutschewsky and other 20th-century music, the preparation for this unique concert program, and his interest in “music of Jewish connection.”

Click here to read the exclusive interview.