This program resonates with the remarkable cultural activity
that arose in the Vilna Ghetto during its two years of existence
under Nazi rule, from 1941 to 1943, under conditions of unimaginable
deprivation and suffering. This culture is most easily accessible
to us through the songs that reflected the tragic lives of the
inmates but also gave them home and couage to endure. Professor
Solon Beinfeld's English narration will provite the context
of the Yiddish songs of the Vilna Ghetto sung by Wren Ross.
Samuel Bak, painter- Pucker Gallery
BK431 - Rainbow Suite, 1996 Oil on Linen - 32 x
More About Wren...
Wren Ross has been performing for over twenty years. She was a cast member of Shear Madness for eleven years (Boston's longest running play), and appeared in major roles at The Charles Playhouse, The Next Move Theatre, and The Boston Repertory Theatre. Her one-woman show, A Strong Woman Is... received much acclaim.
Wren was invited by the curators of the Starr Gallery and
the Jewish Women's Archives to produce and appear in a cabaret
performance called Then and Now that
was a companion piece for the "Women Whose Lives Span the
Century" project. The collaboration was intended to preserve
the rich oral histories of Jewish women living in the twentieth
century. Wren has an extensive knowledge of the music of the
Holocaust. She sings Yiddish songs of the Vilna Ghetto (1941-43)
as part of a touring performance/lecture about the cultural
life of the ghetto with Dr. Solon Beinfeld, Professor Emeritus
of Washington University; Dr. Beinfeld is a known expert on
the subject. . In the spring of 2002, she was a guest artist
at the International Conference On Resistance in Nazi Germany
at Boston College where she sang songs of the Ghetto. Wren was
invited to sing at a tribute to the internationally renowned
artist Samuel Bak, a survivor of the Vilna ghetto. Sam asked
her to narrate his memoirs in a documentary about his life called
Speaking the Unspeakable: The Art of Samuel Bak.
Wren was MC and sang the songs of Brecht/Weill
at a special "Kabarett"
held in conjunction with an exhibition of German Expressionist
self-portraits at the McMullen Museum at Boston College. She
was the guest artist at the opening night of the "Anne
Frank in the World" exhibit in Albuquerque, New Mexico
in January 2000. Recently, she was honored to be brought by
the Holocaust survivors of New Mexico to sing at the 2004 Yom
HaShoah memorial service.
In addition to her singing and dramatic credits, Wren has been seen and heard in hundreds of broadcast spots. She has worked with such notable personalities as Walter Cronkite, Jason Robards, Mason Adams, and Ben Vereen.
Her voice can be heard in major museums across the United States. Among her television voice-over credits are the PBS programs, Nova, The People's Century, Celebration of the American Family and Prelude to Kosovo. She narrated She Lives to Ride, a feature film about female motorcyclists.
Wren sings a wide variety of styles from Broadway, Folk, Jazz,
World, to Classical and Pop. She loves to sing Jewish music
and includes Hebrew, Ladino and Yiddish songs in her repertoire.
Wren is dedicated to keeping the legacy of Holocaust music alive.
Hear Songs from "Sits a
Stranger Singing" - Songs of the Ghetto:
(Songs are in MP3 format.
Click on the
to download the file.)
Feygl (Birds Are Sleeping)