This is the music of Flory Jagoda. The beautiful, haunting melodies are part of an ancient and endangered Sephardic musical tradition that can trace its origins to the Jewish communities medieval Spain. For Jagoda, music was a lifesaver, a way of keeping her sanity intact and her cultural memory alive after the trauma of the Holocaust.
Our show this week examines Jagoda’s legacy, and some of the other ways music serves to connect us with tradition and community. We’re inspired by the work of our friends at the Virginia Folklife Program, who dedicate themselves to preserving endangered cultural heritage with concerts, recordings, and interviews.
Wherever you are, consider looking into your local folklife programming to connect this holiday season with the cultural history of your area. You never know what you might learn!
Note: There’s no Short Listen for this week, as we’re all off enjoying our holidays — we hope you are too! And we’ll be back with more bite-sized interviews in the New Year. Happy Holidays!