Russian Jewish pianist in residence at DU

Jascha Nemtsov, a Berlin-based Russian pianist, will perform, lecture and teach during his stay at DU April 28–May 2.

Nemtsov is an artist-in-residence for the Center for Judaic Studies’ year-long project called “Shema: What Jewish Culture Sounds Like.” Shema, which means “listen” in Hebrew, explores the sounds of Jewish culture through music, poetry, theater and language.

“I hope to share my interest in a less known area of Jewish culture, which was for many years forgotten and recently rediscovered,” Nemtsov says.

Nemtsov, a member of the School of Jewish Studies at the University of Potsdam, dedicates many of his concerts to Jewish composers persecuted and murdered by the Nazis, including Viktor Ullmann, Erwin Schulhoff, Gideon Klein and Pavel Haas.

“Jascha Nemtsov has done the world a great service by rescuing the history of these great Russian Jewish composers,” says David Shneer, CJS director. “As a pianist and scholar, Nemtsov is uniquely positioned to tell this story and perform the works they wrote. He brings together the curiosity of the historian with the virtuosity of a pianist.”

Nemtsov will conduct a piano recital featuring Jewish composers May 1 at 7:30 p.m. in the Newman Center’s Hamilton Recital Hall. Tickets are available at TicketMaster and are $18 for the general public, $10 for DU faculty and staff and $5 for students with a DU ID.

On April 28 at 7:30 p.m., Nemtsov will lecture about the sounds he’s recovered.

“It will surely be an exciting experience to speak to American students and to get their feedback,” he says. “Until now I only had the chance to teach this subject to German students, so I hope to have interesting discussions on it.”

Nemtsov is the fifth CJS artist-in-residence this year.

“Through it all we have seen that Jews make music, poetry and theater wherever they are and that these sounds are as diverse as the places Jews live,” Shneer says.

The final artist-in-residence is Jewlia Eisenberg. The San Francisco-based musician, cantor and installation artist is on campus now through May 10. Visit here for complete list of events.

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