News Release


April 15, 2005

A Voice for the Silenced to Air May 2-6
Series commemorates the 60th anniversary of the
liberation of the Nazi concentration camps

A Voice for the Silenced, a series of five one-hour shows on composers of the Holocaust period, will air at 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, May 2-6, on KBSU. Conductor James Conlon will join host Monika Vischer to talk about the Holocaust�s devastation of Europe�s musical scene and the recent reemergence of these composers� stories and works. Vischer will also talk with singer Ela Weissberger, a survivor of the Terez�n concentration camp, who shares her childhood experiences with powerful intimacy.

The series begins with the compelling music and story of Viktor Ullmann (1898-1944), whose most important works were written for fellow prisoners at Theresienstadt (Terez�n), a Nazi transit camp for European Jews destined for extermination camps, before his murder at Auschwitz. Not only lives but also legacies were lost in the Holocaust. After immigrating to America in 1933, Arnold Schoenberg (1874-1951) became the most influential successor of the Viennese school through his students and followers, while others of his generation, like Alexander Zemlinsky (1871-1942) and Franz Schreker (1878-1934), were denied a similar legacy.

The Nazi oppression covered politics and sexual orientation as well as religious and racial heritage. Still, there were voices of heroism and survival, heard in the works of Ervin Schulhoff (1894-1942) as well as Karl Amadeus Hartmann (1905-1963) and Walter Braunfels (1882-1954). These were voices that could not be easily stilled. Locked away from Europe�s concert halls, imprisoned composers like Ullmann, Hans Kr�sa (1899-1944), Gideon Klein (1919-1945), Pavel Haas (1899-1944) and Olivier Messiaen (1908-92), shared their creativity and spirit in the barracks of concentration camps like Terez�n. Through foresight, luck or daring, some survived or escaped the Holocaust and immigrated to other countries, especially America. Uprooted and forever changed by the experience, composers like Erich Korngold (1897-1957), Ernst Krenek (1900-1991) and Kurt Weill (1900-1950) found new homes, new opportunities and new voices.

�The Holocaust had a devastating impact on Western musical history,� said Conlon. �It was the uprooting of a centuries-old musical garden which had been nurtured and flourishing since before the time of Bach.� Conlon has devoted years to the study and performance of music by composers whose lives and work were affected by the Holocaust. Born in New York in 1950, he studied at the Juilliard School in New York and made his d�but conducting Boris Godunov at the 1971 Spoleto Festival in Italy. After receiving the conducting award of the American National Orchestral Association, he was the youngest conductor engaged for the New York Philharmonic Orchestra�s subscription series in 1974. Conlan made his Metropolitan d�but in 1976 and his British opera d�but with the Scottish Opera in the same year. In 1979 he debuted at Covent Garden and succeeded Levine as music director of the Cincinnati May Festival. After international engagements and positions with the Paris Op�ra, Maggio Musicale in Florence, Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra and the Chicago Lyric Opera, Conlon became chief conductor at the Cologne Opera in 1989. In 1996 he was appointed music director of the Op�ra National de Paris while concurrently serving as General Music Director of the city of Cologne, Germany. He will be assuming leadership of the Los Angeles Opera in 2006.

A Voice for the Silenced was produced to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the final liberation of the Nazi concentration camps in 1945.

KBSU is the arts and cultural radio station from Boise State University. KBSU is heard in Boise at 90.3 FM and in McCall at 91.7 FM.


Contact: Jim East, Associate General Manager, Network Programming, Boise State Radio, (208) 947-5659,

Media Contact: Kathleen Craven, communications and marketing, (208) 426-3275,



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Last reviewed on Thursday, December 22, 2005