Joel Rubin's New Project: The Magid Chronicles (New CD Release)

The acclaimed Berkeley-based trio Veretski Pass, together with UVA Associate Professor and Director of Music Performance, Joel Rubin, has embarked on uncharted territory with their new project dedicated to performing the pieces collected by Sofia Magid, the Jewish ethnographer who worked intensively to document Jewish music in Belarus and Ukraine during Stalin’s regime in the 1920s and 30s. Magid’s 600 recordings have been left untouched since they were created, and include music that was not only collected by a woman, but that also feature rare examples of women’s themes. Veretski Pass’ and Joel Rubin’s work involves cleaning, deciphering and transcribing the cylinders, then arranging, performing and recording them, and finally teaching them to workshop students. 

An important facet of the project is the cadre of new compositions, improvisations, and re-compositions derived from and/or inspired by the Magid collection and drawing on traditions and cultures as diverse as Romanian, Turkish, Greek, and Hutsul traditions. Although derived largely from ethnographic work, this work is essentially a creative re-imagination of the material.

The new CD recording of this project will be available on Golden Horn Records as of Feb. 15, 2019. The group’s last collaborative project, Poyln: A Gilgul (Poland: A Metamorphosis, 2015), received a 5-star review from the influential world music magazine, Songlines.

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