Klezmer is a musical tradition which parallels hasidic and ashkenazic judaism. Originating in the villages and ghettos of Eastern Europe, where nomadic Jewish musicians known as “klezmorim” performed at weddings and other celebrations, klezmer music has been played from the early middle ages until the beginning of the twentieth century. The Jews who emigrated to America in the 1880s to early 1900s brought klezmer music with them. In the New World, klezmer was heavily influenced by early jazz and swing, and the style continues to evolve. Klezmer’s distinctive sound blends artistic virtuosity with numerous tempo changes, irregular rhythms, dissonance and an element of improvisation. Eclectic and diversified, klezmer music is unique, easily recognizable and widely appreciated, both by “ethnic insiders” and larger audiences all around the world. Klezmer music currently enjoys tremendous popularity and has been undergoing a true revival since the 1980s.
Similar to the music they perform, KLEZTORY is a rich mosaic of cultures (Russian, Canadian, Quebecois and Moldavian) musical training (academic and self taught) and musical tastes (classical, contemporary, jazz, blues, country and folk). Combining their talents, these musicians perform with an emotion and a virtuosity that is the true spirit of klezmer. Through the use of innovative arrangements that are respectful of the original compositions, KLEZTORY has forged a unique and yet authentic musical path.
conductor Normunds Šnē