Educational Shows for Students/Children
I. Jewish Storytelling with Klezmer Music
"Something from Nothing" (part I)
The classic Jewish folk-tale "Something from Nothing" or "Epes fun Gornisht" is read using music and dance for an interactive experience with the students. Developed together with the Cleveland Orchestra Educational department, Steven brings this beautiful story of a grandfather's love, lessons of resourcefulness and creative thinking to life by adding klezmer music to identify the characters, involving the students with questions, group dancing and singing. The students learn about Jewish history, life in Eastern Europe, Ashkenazic Jewish culture, new words in Yiddish and klezmer music. Ideal for kindergarten through 2nd grade students. 20 to 30 min.
II. Jewish Storytelling with Klezmer Music
"Joseph's Khasene" (Joseph's Wedding) (part II)
This enchanting story expands on the previous "Something from Nothing" story with the now adult Joseph's wedding to Rivka. A review of the previous story plus an interactive experience with klezmer music and dance. Students to experience a traditional Jewish wedding complete with the badkhn (Jewish wedding jester/announcer). Original story by Steven Greenman. Ideal for kindergarten through 2nd grade students. 20 to 30 minutes.
III. Storytelling with Klezmer and East European Folk Music
"Shloyme's Journey" is an original story by Steven Greenman and further developed together with the Cleveland Orchestra Educational department. The main character, Shloyme Shloyman is a klezmer violinist, a Jewish professional musician who travels outside his own familiar shtetl (Jewish town) in search of something in his life which he does not know. During the journey Shloyme encounters and interacts with musicians from many East-European countries. They teach and show each other the music and dances of their ethnic group or nationality. The students experience the journey of the musician Shloyme discovering him self and the world in an interactive way by learning the folklore of different cultures with their similarities and differences to Jewish music and dance. In this story students will:
-learn and hear the similarities and difference between Jewish and East European folk music
-learn how each culture uses similar music in their respective cultures
-gain an appreciation for different cultures and ethnicities
“Shloyme’s Journey” is ideal for 3rd grade students. 35 to 40 minutes.
IV. Jewish Storytelling with Klezmer Music
"Latkes, Latkes Good to Eat" by Naomi Howland
Steven delightfully adds klezmer music to author Naomi Howland's wonderful children's Chanukah story "Latkes, Latkes Good to Eat." In similar fashion to his "Something from Nothing Pt. I" story, Steven gives each character in the story their own unique klezmer tune to better describe them while reading the story. Surprises abound with exotic melodies for charming characters. Ideal for 1st-2nd grade students. 20 minutes.
V. Klezmer Music Demonstrations
With his violin, Steven gives exciting demonstrations of klezmer music to students of all ages. Detailed descriptions and performances of the klezmer dance and listening repertoire both soulful and exuberant will delight students. Steven will also demonstrate the distinct Jewish ornamentation that makes klezmer music unique. If time permits, Steven will perform the music that would have been played for a traditional East European Jewish wedding and expound on the history and include students to participate. For older students, a more detailed lecture of klezmer music can also be included. Ideal for students of all ages, kindergarten through high school. 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes and 60 minutes.
VI. Klezmer/Jazz Connection
Violinist Steven Greenman combines with guitarist/bassist/composer Henry Shapiro (Steel City Klezmorim, Swing Fever) and pianist Tom Roberts (Leon Redbone ensemble) to present an interactive program for students showing the connections between klezmer music and jazz. The artists will show how traditional klezmer music was adapted to American tastes and musical styles with influences from jazz and swing as Jewish professional musicians (klezmorim) immigrated to America. Students will hear tunes played in traditional klezmer style and then in their cross-over "Americanized" form. Rhythms, harmonies and melodic lines will be compared and contrasted for students to see and hear. Students will have a chance to dance traditionally to a klezmer tune and then dance to the same tune played as a swing tune. Students will also hear the connections between Jewish improvisational rubato tunes (doina, taxim) and the "blues." Lastly, students will hear the connection between Jewish mystical tunes (nigunim) and jazz "scat" singing and participate in the singing of both with their improvised nonsense syllables. Ideal for students grades 1-8. 30 to 40 min.