International Association of Yiddish Clubs
11th Conference Updates

Monthly Front Page of Der Bay in Hardcopy

#1 IAYC Announces Its Exciting 11th Conference -- August 3-6, 2007
Overview of the 11th IAYC Conference
#3 Plenary Speakers at the IAYC 11th Conference
#4 Entertainment Schedule at the IAYC 11th Conference

#5 Lecture/Workshop Presentations at the IAYC 11th Conference
#6 Conference Exhibitors and Vendors
#7 Second IAYC Yiddish Lifetime Achievement Award
#8 IAYC Schedule of Events
#9 Post-Conference Tour

Contact Information

Co-Chair: Annabelle Weiss..Ph: 216-752-2021
Co-Chair: Marilyn Cagin…..Ph: 216-378-0507
Co-Chair: Harold Ticktin…..Ph: 216-752-1881

Registration: Pauline Leber, Ph: 216-831-4177

Programming & Vending: Fishl Kutner,
Ph: 650-349-6946 E-mail


*** FRIDAY, AUGUST 3rd ***

Noon - 9:00 P.M. Conference Registration:

2:00 - 3:15 P.M. Orientation Session
• Philip Fishl Kutner: Program Chairman

3:30 – 5:00 P.M. People’s Yiddish Stage
• Cookie Blattman: My Favorite Yiddish Songs
• Paul Melrood: Sunday Yiddish Radio Hour
• Troim & Frank: In Yiddish Humor
• Hilda Rubin and Frieda Enoch, Di Shpilers—Yiddish Skits
• “Lil Rev”: The Yiddish Folksinger

6:30 P.M. Katz Family of Milwaukee Evening:
Dinner: Greetings & Introductions
Harold Ticktin: Conference Chair
Paul Melrood: IAYC President

8:30 P.M. Evening Entertainment:
• Reuben & Dorothy Silver
Kum Lakh Mit Undz

Yiddishe Cup Klezmer Band
Bert Stratton: Leader & Emcee
Irwin Weinberger:  Vocals & Guitar              
Alan Douglass:  Vocals & Keyboards
Steven Greenman:  Violin
Don Friedman:   Drums
Daniel Ducoff:   Shtickmeister

*** SATURDAY, AUGUST 4th ***

7:00 A.M. Yiddish/Hebrew Shabes Services:
Prof. Refoyl Finkel & Charles Gruenspan

9:00 - 10:15 A.M. Plenary - Session A:
Lerner Fund Memorial Lecture:
Dr. Jonathan Sunshine: Yiddish of Greater Washington President

• Dr. Motl Rosenush: Vice President
The International Association of Yiddish Clubs
Yiddish Was a Major Language of Europe

10:45 - 12:00 Noon General - Session I:
• Miriam Beckerman:
Yiddish in Israel--Then and Now
• Cookie Blattman:
A Yidishe Shtunde
• Boris Sandler:
Fraynd fun forverts, fraynd fun yidish
• Sonia Pressman Fuentes:
How Being an Immigrant Affected My Life
• Harold Ticktin:
Bolsheviks and Bundists

12:00 Noon – 1:30 P.M. Lunch:

1:30 - 2:45 P.M. General - Session II:

• Adrienne Cooper:
Naye Kveytn af an Altn Boym
• Troim Katz Handler:
The Songs of Mordecai Gebirtig
• Marcia Gruss-Levinsohn:
Yiddish Kids in Action
• Bert Stratton:
Mickey Katz From Cleveland
• Annabelle Weiss:
Born to Kvetch by Michael Wex—A Critique

3:15 - 4:30 P.M. General - Session III:
• Roz Baker:
Programming for Yiddish Clubs—A Workshop
• Frank Handler: Vladimir Medem:
Non-Jewish Jew and Yiddishist
• Debbie Herman:
Using Yiddish Creatively
• Heather Klein:
Cantors and Opera Singers from the Shtetl to La Scala
• Frank Krasnowsky:
Jewish History through Yiddish Music

6:00 P.M. The Workmen’s Circle/
Arbeter Ring Gala Evening

7:30 P.M. Scholarship Awards Presentation
Roz Baker: IAYC Scholarship Awards Chair
Sabina Brukner, Sean Martin, "Lil Rev":  Recipients

7:40 P.M. 2nd Yiddish Lifetime Service Award
Annabelle Weiss: Introduction
• Simon Swirsky: Recipient

8:00 P.M. Peter Pepper: Workmen’s Circle, President

8:15 P.M. A Besere Velt: Yiddish Songs for Our Times
The Workmen’s Circle National Troupe: Featuring

• Zalmen Mlotek: Artistic Director of The National Yiddish Theater-Folksbiene
• Adrienne Cooper: One of the most influential performers of Yiddish vocal music
• Joanne Borts: Internationally renowned Yiddish Diva
• Heather Klein: A new brilliant performer in the national Yiddish song scene

*** SUNDAY, AUGUST 5th ***

9:00 - 9:15 A.M. Introduction of Conference Committee Co-Chairs
Harold Ticktin, Marilyn Cagin, Annabelle Weiss

9:15 - 10:15 A.M. Plenary - Session B:
Dr. Harold Black Memorial Lecture

Pauline Leber: Introduction:
• Professor Kathryn Hellerstein:
University of Pennsylvania
The Poetry of Kadya Molodowsky

10:30 - 11:45 A.M. General - Session IV:
• Rina Frankel:
The 3 Great Classic Yiddish Writers: Their Similarities and Differences
• Ruth Goodman: Video, Power Point
Jewish Life in the Middle Ages
• Rabbi Yossi Marozov:
Her tsu mayn zibn yoreker yingl redt yidish mit undz
• Dr. Arnold Reisman: Turkey's Rescue
of Jewish Intellectuals 1933-1945
• Hilda Rubin:
Lomir Shpiln Teater: Di Khelemer Naronim

11:45 A.M. - 1:00 P.M. IAYC Luncheon:

1:00 - 2:15 P.M. General - Session V:
• Vivian Felsen and Prof. Yoshiji Hirose:
Yidish in Yapan, A Slide Show
• Professor Raphael Finkel:
Oysgeblozn fun finger: mir shafn a nay folkslid
• Cantor Hale Porter:
Yiddish Theater’s Influence on Music & Culture in America
• Daniel Galay:
Yiddish in Israel - Present and Perspectives
• Helen Smolkin:
Learning Yiddish Through Music

2:30-3:45 P.M. General - Session VI:
• Sabina Brukner:
Making Yiddish Relevant in Today’s Jewish Life:  The KlezKamp Experience
• Jack Saul:
Jews in Vaudeville
• Prof. Yoshiji Hirose: A Japanese Professor in Search of Yiddish, a “Meshugener”?
 ----The Symbolic Meaning of Yiddish in Pearl Abraham's Novels
• Sean Martin:
The Jews of Krakow, Poland
• “Lil Rev”:
The History of Jewish Music

4:30 - 5:30 P.M. Dinner

5:30 P.M. Board Buses to Cain Park

7:00 – 9:00 P.M. Concert in the Park
Henry & Eugenia Green Endowment

Arbeter Ring Klezmer Orchestra
Norman Tischler: Director:
Lori Cahan-Simon: Vocalist
Martin Moskow: Vocalist

Yiddish Swingtet: Featuring:
Greg Wall: Band Leader
Joanne Borts: Vocalist
Susan Watts: Vocalist

10:00 P.M. After Glow Party Back at Hotel

*** MONDAY, AUGUST 6th ***

9:00 - 10:15 A.M. Plenary Session C:
Friendship Circle of Cleveland Lecture
Rabbi Yossi Marozov: Introduction
Exec. Dir. Friendship Circle of Cleveland

Helen Smolkin: Introduction
IAYC Board Member, Toronto

• Gerry Kane: Past President
The Canadian Committee for Yiddish
Tsu gast baym zeyde mendele

10:45 A.M. - Noon Plenary Session D:
The Henrietta Wexler Hour
Ieda Warshay: IAYC Cleveland Conference Committee

• Cantor Kathryn Sebo: Temple Tifereth Israel
Yiddish, Broadway and Beyond

Noon - 1:00 P.M. Luncheon

1:00 - 1:30 p.m.  Closing Ceremonies
Introduction of IAYC Officers 2007-2008

Announcement of the Twelfth IAYC Conference Location Introduction of the Twelfth IAYC Conference Chair

2:00 - 5:00 P.M. Post Conference Tour
Lolly the Trolley tour will include a visit to the new
Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage,
a tour of the Cleveland Jewish Community,
University Circle  and the Rock Hall of Fame and more!  
The cost is $28 per person.

Must Register in Advance, Limited Space

The Second IAYC Lifetime Yiddish Achievement Award
Simon Swirsky – Yiddish Activist

Simon was born in Postawa, near Vilna in 1914. Most of the family lived as traditional Jews. He attended kheder until bar mitzvah, and then was a student in the Yiddishe Veltlekhe Folkshul. His father was a Yiddishist and it influenced Simon.

Upon graduation his teachers recommended sending him to Vilna to continue his studies, but the family could not afford it. He was obliged to work as a tailor to help support his family. He continued his education in a Polish State high school for three more years.

In 1939 Poland was divided between Germany and the USSR. The Swirsky family was in the Russian sector. When Germany attacked Russia the family fled east. After a harrowing journey they settled in a village east of Moscow on the Volga River, and Simon joined the Red Army.

After the war Simon met his wife Myra in Kiev, and their two children were born there. In 1960 the family returned to Poland, and in 1966, the entire Swirsky family emigrated and settled in Cleveland, Ohio where he worked at Dalton’s, a clothing factory, becoming a master pattern maker for designer women’s clothing.

Over the years he has made countless contributions to the Cleveland and national Jewish community:

1) In 1975 Simon organized the first Russian-Jewish group in America. It was named to honor Solomon Mikhoels, the renowned actor-director of the Yiddish Moscow Art Theater, who was murdered in 1948 on Stalin’s orders.

2) He serves as the Chair of the Yiddish Cultural Committee of Cleveland for many years, establishing a successful monthly Yiddish program for the community.

3) He is a founding member of the annual Free Yiddish Concert in the Park committee, now in its 29th year, serving currently as treasurer.

4) He became a zamler for the NYBC. When he saw a storeroom of Yiddish books at what was then The Cleveland College of Jewish Studies, now Siegal College, he organized them, and the Cleveland Jewish News featured him in a story.

5) His knowledge of European languages, Hebrew, variations in spelling, were helpful in completing the task of translating into English. One series became a published book. Simon also translated the minutes of the first meeting in 1906 of Menorah Park when it observed its 100th anniversary.

6) His work on the IAYC Conference Committee has been exemplary. Simon is Mr. Yiddish of Cleveland and a star in the World-wide Yiddish Community.

Simon has been recognized by the Workmen’s Circle, the NYBC and the Ohio Legislature in recognition of his work in Yiddish Culture and with Russian Jews.

Exhibitors and Vendors at the IAYC 11th Conference

Exhibitors & Vendors

This area is a win-win situation. It gives the author, bandleader, performer, editor and organizational representative the venue to showcase their materials. Likewise, attendees have the opportunity not only to purchase or see these items (or handouts), but even more important to meet and discuss first-hand with the exhibitors and vendors. Many of the ones at the Teaneck Conference will be returning, for they had a very positive response. Here is a growing list—additional ones have been coming in weekly.

Since many of these vendors/exhibitors will also be presenting, you will receive additional information. It is a wonderful opportunity to get your item autographed by the producer.

A Partial List of Exhibitors and Vendors

Hotel Vendor Layout Plan

Arbeter Ring/The Workmen’s Circle
Miriam Beckerman
Capital Klezmer
Cookie Blattman
Lori Cahan-Simon
Concert in the Park
Congress for Secular Jewish Organizations

Adrienne Cooper
Der Bay
Vivian Felsen
Friends of the Siegal College Library

Sonia Pressman Fuentes
Daniel Galay
Ruth Goodman
Troim Katz Handler
Debbie Herman
Professor Yoshiji Hirose
International Association of Yiddish Clubs
Heather Klein
Frank Krasnowsky
Marcia Gruss Levinsohn
“Lil Rev”
Living Traditions-KlezKamp
Rabbi Yossi Marozov

Sean Martin
National Yiddish Book Center
National Yiddish Theater/Folksbiene
Ohio District of The Workmen’s Circle
Pennello Gallery

Dr. Arnold Reisman
Cantor Kathryn Sebo
Simcha Sales -Sal Kluger
Taxi Service - Eastside Transportation
Vilnius Summer Institute
Yiddishe Cup Klezmer Band

Lecture/Workshop Presentations at the IAYC 11th Conference

Among the 30 lecture/workshops will be some of the performers and vendors who will also have materials for your groups back home. They include:  Adrienne Cooper, Boris Sandler, Bert Stratton, Hale Porter, Cookie Blattman, Miriam Beckerman, “Lil Rev” Rabbi Yossi Marozov, Sonia Pressman Fuentes, Hilda Rubin, Frank Krasnowsky, Ruth Goodman and Marcia Gruss Levinsohn.

As we near the Conference date there will be more details and about the presenters. Some will be discussed here and others in Der altveltlekher farband fun yidish-klubn nayes.

List of Lecture/Workshops

Roz Baker – Programming for Yiddish Clubs—A Workshop
Miriam Beckerman – Yiddish Translator’s Workshop
Cookie Blattman – A Yidishe Shtunde
Sabina Brukner - Making Yiddish Relevant in Today’s Jewish Life:  The KlezKamp Experience
Adrienne Cooper – New Yiddish Songs from Around the World
Vivian Felsen & Prof. Yoshiji Hirose - Yidish in yapan
Dr. Raphael Finkel – Oysgeblozn fun finger: mir shafn a nay folkslid
Rina Frankel – The 3 Great Classic Yiddish Writers: Similarities & Differences
Sonia Pressman Fuentes
– How Being an Immigrant Affected My Life
Daniel Galay – Yiddish in Israel - Present and Perspectives
Ruth Goodman
– Life for Jews in the Middle Ages, Power Point
Troim Katz Handler – The Songs of Mordecai Gebirtig
Frank Handler – Vladimir Medem: Non-Jewish Jew and Yiddishist
Deborah Herman - Creative Yiddish
Prof. Yoshiji Hirose - A Japanese Professor in Search of Yiddish, a “Meshugener”?
 ----The Symbolic Meaning of Yiddish in Pearl Abraham's Novels
Heather Klein - Cantors and Opera Singers from the Shtetl to La Scala
Frank Krasnowsky - Jewish History through Yiddish Music
Marcia Gruss Levinsohn
– Yiddish Kids in Action
Sean Martin – The Jews of Krakow, Poland
Rabbi Yossi Marozov – Her tsu mayn zibn yoreker yingl redt yidish mit undz
Cantor Hale Porter
– Yiddish Theater’s Influence on Music & Culture in America
Dr. Arnold Reisman – Turkey's Rescue of Jewish Intellectuals 1933-1945
"Lil Rev" – The History of Jewish Music
Hilda Rubin & Frieda Enoch – Lomir Shpiln Teater: Di Khelemer Naronim
Boris Sandler - Fraynd fun forverts, fraynd fun yidish
Jack Saul
– Jews in Vaudville
Helen Smolkin – Learning Yiddish Through Music
Bert Stratton – Mickey Katz From Cleveland
Harold Ticktin – Bolsheviks and Bundists
Annabelle Weiss – Born to Kvetch by Michael Wex—A Critique

Entertainment Schedule at the IAYC 11th Conference

There will be highly talented entertainment each evening. During the first and last day of the conference there will be daytime shows.

Afternoon Show

• People’s Yiddish Stage: 5 Acts
The Sunday Morning Yiddish Radio Hour
The Handlers in Yiddish Humor
My Favorite Yiddish Songs
Di Shpilers—Yiddish Skits
The Yiddish Folksinger

Evening Performance

• Yiddishe Cup Klezmer Band
Bert Stratton, Leader
• Kum Lakh Mit Undz
Reuben & Dorothy Silver

Yiddish Songs for Our Times

• Workmen’s Circle National Troupe
Featuring Adrienne Cooper, Joanne Borts, Zalmen Mlotek and Heather Klein

Klezmer Concert at Cain Park

Conference attendees will be bused to Cain Park for the 29rh Klezmer Concert in the Park.

• Arbeter Ring Klezmer Orchestra
Director: Norman Tischler, Vocalists:
Lori Cahan-Simon & Martin Moskow

• Yiddish Swingtet: Featuring, Greg Wall, Joanne Borts, & Susan Watts


The Closing Session will feature group participation in singing and dancing.

• Cantor Kathryn Sebo:
Yiddish, Broadway and Beyond

Among the 30 + lecture/workshops will be performers & vendors who will entertain you, and have materials for your groups back home. They are Adrienne Cooper, Bert Stratton, Hale Porter, Cookie Blattman, Hilda Rubin, “Lil Rev,” and Frank & Troim Handler

IAYC 11th Conference
Cleveland, Ohio • August 3-6, 2007

Plenary Speakers at the IAYC 11th Conference

There will be six daytime plenary sessions (ones where the entire convention attendees are in the main ballroom). Fishl Kutner will again open the conference with an orientation session at 2 pm Friday afternoon. This will be followed by 5 entertainment acts of the Jewish People’s Stage. The closing session on Monday will have the Yiddish Lifetime Service Award and top-flight entertainment with Cantor Kathryn Sebo.

August 4, 2007

Dr. Michael Motl Rosenbush was born in Lublin, Poland. At the University of New Hampshire Motl held the position of chairman of the Russian Department. Motl translates from Yiddish, Russian and Polish into English for the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C.

He has run Yiddish workshops in Brussels, Paris (at the Medem Bibliotheque with Professor Yitzhok Niborski), Washington, D.C., and at the IAYC Conference in Baltimore, and is the Vice President of the International Association of Yiddish Clubs.

August 5, 2007

Professor Kathryn Hellerstein is the Ruth Meltzer Senior Lecturer in Yiddish and Jewish Studies and the Undergraduate Director of the Jewish Studies Program at the University of Pennsylvania. She is a native Clevelander and her mother still lives there.

Her current projects include Anthology of Women Yiddish Poets and a critical book, A Question of Tradition:  Women Poets in Yiddish. Her topic will be The Poetry of Kadya Molodowsky.

August 6, 2007

Mr. Gerry Kane is a past chairman of the Canadian Yiddish Committee. He succeeded Phil Givens (o”h), the former mayor of Toronto and a member of Parliament. He has been a radio announcer, copywriter, journalist, and currently is the communication advisor to the Ontario government.

Gerry is an expert on Mendele Mokher Sforim and a great public speaker. His article was in the January issue of Der Bay on page 4.

Overview of the 11th IAYC Conference

Both exhibitors and vendors will have tables in the main lobby around the large, beautiful, spraying water fountain.

There will be five plenary sessions (ones where the entire conference attendees are in the main ballroom listening to a featured program). The IAYC pattern is to start each morning off with a featured lecture presentation.

Each evening after the banquet there will be awards and a full program of top-flight Yiddish entertainers.

There will be 6 sessions with 5 concurrent presentations/workshops each. These will be scheduled so that they will range from all-Yiddish to English/Yiddish and all English. All phases of Yiddish interest will be covered.

August 3, 2007

Registration, and orientation session by Fishl, The Yiddish People's Stage with 5 acts. Evening introductions and greetings, dinner, report of election results of 2007-8 IAYC Board of Directors, entertainment. 

August 4, 2007

Early Saturday morning services in Hebrew and Yiddish. Lerner Memorial lecture followed by a pre-lunch session and 2 post lunch sessions. The evening program will be The Workmen’s Circle Gala Evening with Adrienne Cooper and her Workmen's Circle National Troupe.

August 5, 2007

Featured lecture in plenary session followed by a session of 5 concurrent lectures/workshops.

Following lunch there will be 2 sessions with 5 presentations each. After an early dinner, all conference attendees will be bused to the 29th Annual Concert in the Park (Cain Park). After the performance the performers will be coming back to our Marriott Hotel where we shall have dessert and a chance to shmues.

August 6, 2007

There will be a featured lecture in plenary session followed by a great closing act including group singing.  Special effort is being made to have a very strong closing experience followed by lunch. An excellent time to share ideas with newly found friends and old acquaintances. Annoucement will be made of the next conference and the chairperson will be introduced.

Post-Conference Tour

Lolly Trolley tour to Moltz Museum and other fascinating sites.

IAYC 11th Conference Comes to Cleveland

This is the first in a series of reports on the IAYC XI Conference August 3-6, 2007 at the Marriott Cleveland East Hotel. Each month there will be an update and a report on another phase of this great Conference.

These conferences are only one facet of membership in IAYC. It is through group organizations of this sort that we can network and gain information that will make our clubs more knowledgeable and successful. It is at these conferences that we meet others who love Yiddish, and with whom we can share our Yiddish activites.

Why We Selected Cleveland

This might more accurately be, Why Cleveland Selected IAYC.

It is written that there is a time to sow and a time to reap…. Almost from the first IAYC conference there has been a higher than expected attendance of Clevelanders at the IAYC conference. When asked if they would host the next conference there was always a hesitancy. We believe in hungry ballplayers. If a person is not eager and fully committed it is not a good sign for leadership.

This time we have yet another winning combination of leadership and a strong conference committee. Harold Ticktin, the chairman, stepped forward. He is a retired attorney with extensive community and organizational contacts and a keen writing ability. We shall discuss more about the fabulous committee in detail in future issues.

Selection Requirements

For a confernce to be successful it must have the right location and the right date. For the Cleveland conference we have a wonderful Marriot hotel that was built only 3 years ago— with all of the latest amenities. The committee chose the first weekend in August so that attendees would have the added advantage of attending the famous Concert in the Park. This Annual Klezmer Event in Cain Park has been an outstanding tradition in the Cleveland Jewish Community with almost 2,000 attending. Since the leadership of this event is also on the IAYC committee, it means that we have experience and ideal arrangements

Conference Locations

This is the third time that IAYC is returning to the mid-west. Each time it has alternated with one on the East Coast. It was Milwaukee (the home of our IAYC President, Paul Melrood) to Baltimore, back to Minneapolis then to Teaneck, NJ. We are currently looking at San Diego as a possibility for the following one.

IAYC is the only major Yiddish organization that meets in different cities. Other future sites include San Diego, Chicago, Detroit, Montreal, and Miami.

Last Updated on 7/30/07

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