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Berkley Students to Perform World Premiere of Cantata Based Anne Frank's Life

Composer Volker Blumenthaler and lyricist Alexander Gruber will visit from Germany to speak about their inspiration and hear "My Name is Anne Frank" performed in its entirety for the first time May 7 at Berkley High School.

The Berkley School District and Holocaust Memorial Center Zekelman Family Campus in Farmington Hills are proud to announce that the Berkley High School orchestra and choir will perform the American premiere of My Name is Anne Frank, a cantata written in commemoration of the life of Anne Frank, on May 7.

Starting at 7 p.m. at the BHS Auditorium located at 2325 Catalpa, the performance is the world premiere of the composer Volker Blumenthaler's complete and original orchestration. The program features solos by Hazzan Daniel Gross (of Adat Shalom Synagogue) and Cantor Penny Steyer (of Temple Shir Shalom).

[Read: BHS to Present U.S. Premiere of Cantata Based Anne Frank's Life]

This is a big moment for music education in the state of Michigan. Not only are a high school orchestra and choir premiering this historic piece in the United States, but also the composer and lyricist, Blumenthaler and Alexander Gruber, respectively, will be visiting from Germany to speak about their inspiration to compose the piece and hear it performed in its entirety for the first time.

This is an equally momentous occasion for Holocaust education in Michigan, especially as it concerns Anne Frank, arguably the most well known Holocaust victim. The cantata is the first of a variety of events the Holocaust Memorial Center is hosting throughout the spring and summer to celebrate its recent acquisition from the Anne Frank Center USA of a sapling from the actual white chestnut tree that brought Anne Frank solace as she and her family hid from the Nazis during World War II. In addition to the dedication of the planting of the tree, several educational events for children and their parents are being scheduled. The HMC is developing a study guide for teaching about the Diary of Anne Frank and the Holocaust.

The Berkley High School orchestra and choir were invited to perform the cantata by the Holocaust Memorial Center and Dr. Guy Stern, director of the International Institute of the Righteous. Dr. Stern envisioned high school students performing the premiere to pay homage to Anne’s teenage Holocaust experience, and invited Berkley’s award-winning orchestra and choir to participate.

This is a free to the public event, but tickets are required for admission. Tickets are limited and only available on a first-come, first-served basis through the Holocaust Memorial Center.  Contact Lawrence Willim, at 248-553-2400, ext. 24 or lawrence.willim2@holocaustcenter.org, for tickets.

Source: Berkley School District

Berkley School District May 03, 2013 at 02:06 PM
The HMC is out of tickets. If any parents of students who are in the Symphony Orchestra or A Cappella Choir need additional tickets, a limited amount is available from Jessica Stilger, Communications Supervisor for the Berkley Schools. Call 248.837.8095. The remaining tickets will be distributed on a first come, first serve basis. Tickets will not be available at the door. The community is welcome to watch the cantata premiere LIVE online here: http://www.berkleyschools.org/berkley-school-district/pages/74907/bhs-cantata-premiere beginning at 7 pm on May 7, 2013.
Leslie Ellis May 04, 2013 at 02:58 AM
Thanks for the heads-up! I'll spread the word about the live link!

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