Classnotes Next Residency

The Role of Music in the Holocaust

ClassNotes Residency at Leon County Schools April 28-May 2, 2014

ClassNotes concert for the community May 3, 2014

Brundibar Opera June 6 and 7, 2014


This is a joint partnership between ClassNotes, Leon High School and Cobb Middle School in Tallahassee, Florida.


Three live musicians (Sharon Roffman, violin, Max Mandel, viola and Caitlin Sullivan, cello) will visit the history classes of Leon County High School for one intensive week and present lessons on the varied roles of music during the Holocaust.  From its use by the Nazis as a method of torture and propaganda, to resistance fighters using songs as a clandestine way to deliver messages, to musicians prisoners performing concerts and writing new music in the camps, music had a huge presence in everyday life.  Ultimately for most it became a profound and necessary outlet to express emotions and preserve humanity in the face of extraordinary violence and discrimination.  Through interactive games and exercises with the students, the musicians will explore the idea of music as a means of expression, communication, developing empathy and combating bullying.  The musicians will also work with the orchestra and chorus in master classes and workshops.


A final concert on May 3 will conclude the residency, open to the community at large, which will feature performances by the trio, the school chorus and the school orchestra, featuring music that was written and performed in the concentration camps.


On June 6 and 7, Cobb Middle School will present a staged production of Brundibar, a children’s opera by Jewish Czech composer Hans Krasa, which was originally performed by the children of Theresienstadt concentration camp in occupied Czechoslovakia.  ClassNotes violinist Sharon Roffman will lead the pit orchestra comprised of Leon students.  One of the original children who performed the opera at Terezin, concentration camp survivor Ela Stein Weissburger, will come to work with the students and share her story.

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