New Voices in World Jewish Music

Sephardic music traditions from around the world are finding fresh interpretations via a new generation of performers. Three of these talented musicians will visit Seattle in Winter 2013 as part of the Stroum Jewish Studies Program’s innovative series, New Voices in World Jewish Music. Through conversations with faculty and live performances, these artists will showcase their roots in places ranging from medieval Spain to Greece, Turkey, Iran and Jerusalem.

Details about each program and ticket information are located below. We hope that you will join us for three special evenings of conversation and musical exploration!


Guy Mendilow Ensemble

Thursday, March 14, Doors at 6:30pm, Concert at 7:30pm
The Fremont Abbey Arts Center, 4272 Fremont Ave N, Seattle

Advance tickets $10/student, $12/general; at the door $15. Purchase tickets here.

Starting in ancient Spain and winding through Sarajevo, Salonica and Jerusalem, the award-winning Guy Mendilow Ensemble breathes new life into centuries-old Sephardi songs.  Epic tales of sailors and love lost to the seas, fantastic dreams and the intrigue of kings and queens abound in arrangements that crackle with rich musical storytelling.  A citizen of Israel, Great Britain and the United States, Guy has lived and performed in South Africa, Israel, Taiwan, Canada, Mexico, Brazil and the United States. More on Guy and his ensemble can be found here.


Sarah Aroeste

in conversation with Prof. Devin Naar

Thursday, January 17th at 7:00 p.m.

Ethnic Cultural Theater
3940 Brooklyn Ave NE, University District

*This event is now over*

Inspired by her family’s Sephardic roots in Greece and Macedonia, Sarah Aroeste has spent the last 10 years bringing her contemporary style of original and traditional Ladino music to audiences around the world. American born and trained in classical opera at Westminster Choir College and Yale University, Aroeste has worked tirelessly to keep Ladino music alive for a new generation. Her style, whether with her original music or with interpreting Ladino folk repertoire, combines traditional Mediterranean Sephardic sounds with contemporary influences such as rock, funk jazz and blues. More on Sarah can be found here.

Prof. Devin E. Naar is the Marsha & Jay Glazer Assistant Professor in Jewish Studies and Assistant Professor of History at the University of Washington. He heads the Sephardic Studies Initiative at UW, which aims to build the world’s first online library of Ladino resources.


Galeet Dardashti

in conversation with Jessika Kenney

Sunday, February 10 at 7:00 p.m.
Brechemin Auditorium, UW School of Music

*This event is now over*

As the granddaughter of Yona Dardashti, the most renowned singer of Persian classical music in Iran in his day, and daughter of highly esteemed cantor Farid Dardashti, Middle Eastern vocalist and composer Galeet Dardashti is the first woman in her family to continue her family tradition of distinguished Persian and Jewish musicianship. Galeet also pursues her passion for Jewish music and culture as an anthropologist. She recently completed her Ph.D. in anthropology on the performance of contemporary Mizrahi and Arab music in Israel.  More on Galeet can be found here.

Jessika Kenney is a vocalist, composer, and faculty member at Cornish College of the Arts. She has performed and recorded internationally for the last 15 years, and studied many areas of vocal music, particularly classical Persian vocal music and Central Javanese vocal music.

This public programming is supported in part by a generous grant from the American Association of Jewish Studies Legacy Heritage Fund and the Special Initiatives Fund of the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle.

Association for Jewish StudiesLegacy Heritage FundJewish Federation of Greater Seattle





Special thanks to our co-sponsors: