Milken Archive of Jewish Music - Editorial Board
As the voice of the PBS program “Live from Lincoln Center,” Martin Bookspan helped bring concerts, operas, and ballets into homes around the country from the time of the show’s first broadcast in January 1976 until his retirement in 2006. Bookspan has also authored the books 101 Masterpieces of Music and Their Composers and Reports Reviews: Classical Recordings, as well as biographies on conductor Zubin Mehta and pianist-conductor-composer, André Previn (the last of which was co-written with author Ross Yockey). He has also been the voice of the Boston Symphony and the New York Philharmonic and has worked as the music director for classical music radio station WQXR in New York City. Bookspan, who graduated from Harvard University in 1947, has also worked as a consultant for the Arts Program of the Rockefeller Foundation and has served on numerous panels for the National Endowment for the Arts. His November 2006 induction into the American Classical Music Hall of Fame made him the first broadcaster to achieve that honor.
Dr. Jonathan Brent
A respected scholar and author, Jonathan Brent served as editorial director and associate director of Yale University Press for 18 years, where he oversaw and initiated multiple publications on Eastern European Jewish history and culture. During that time, Brent also acquired for the press The New Yiddish Library and the Posen Library of Jewish Culture and Civilization, and also founded and served as executive editor of The Annals of Communism, a series whose impact on Soviet historiography Slate likened to that of the Rosetta Stone on the study of hieroglyphics. Brent recounted his experiences gaining access to archives in post-Communist Russia in the book Inside the Stalin Archives: Discovering the New Russia, also published by Yale. In 2009, Brent was appointed executive director and CEO of New York’s YIVO Institute for Jewish Research, which was founded in 1925 in Vilna, Lithuania, and houses the third largest Judaica collection in the Western hemisphere.
Cantor Ida Rae Cahana
A native of Pittsburgh, where she earned her B.F.A. from Carnegie-Mellon Institute, Ida Rae Cahana continued her studies at the New England Conservatory (M.M.), followed by a residence at the American Institute for Musical Studies in Graz, Austria; vocal studies with Cantor Naftali Herstik in Jerusalem; and cantorial investiture with a master of sacred music degree from the School of Sacred Music of Hebrew Union College—Jewish Institute of Religion in New York. Cahana made her London debut in 1996 at the Barbican Centre in a performance of Vanished Voices, a Holocaust commemorative oratorio devised and conducted by Neil W. Levin. Her Lincoln Center debut was in 1997 as a soloist in Soul of Ashkenaz at Alice Tully Hall (the showcase concert of an international congress on the music of German Jewry, “Voice of Ashkenaz”). She has been a faculty member of the H. L. Miller Cantorial School of The Jewish Theological Seminary and, since 2007, has served as an adjunct clergy member and a part-time cantor for Portland, Oregon’s Congregation Beth Israel.
Dr. Charles Davidson
A prolific composer and arranger, Cantor Charles Davidson’s catalog contains more than 300 works, including synagogue pieces, songs, choral cantatas, entire services, Psalm settings, musical plays, theatrical children’s presentations, instrumental pieces, and a one-act opera based on Isaac Bashevis Singer’s Gimpel the Fool. He was one of the first graduates of The Jewish Theological Seminary’s Cantors Institute (now the H. L. Miller Cantorial School), where he also received his doctorate in sacred music. He joined their faculty in 1977. Davidson also served with distinction as hazzan of Congregation Adath Jeshurun in Elkins Park, Pennsylvania, from 1966 to 2004. Davidson’s I Never Saw Another Butterfly, a setting of children’s poetry from the Terezin concentration camp in Czechoslovakia (where only 100 of the 15,000 children survived), has been performed more than 2,500 times and is featured on at least eight commercial recordings. It is also the subject of two award-winning PBS documentaries: The Journey of Butterfly and Butterfly Revisited.