Hebrew Melodies of the Romantic Era is a collection of songs from renowned composers who combined Western writing methods with Yiddish songs, liturgical music and Hassidic dance tunes. It is a celebration of Jewish music composed and/or adapted in the 19th century.
Isabelle Durin violin and Michaël Ertzscheid piano beautifully perform the works of Ernest Bloch, Joseph Achron, George Perlman, Abraham Goldfaden, and John Williams. This includes the traditional song Dance of the Rebbitzen, which is a recognizable Hanukkah tune, as well as Max Bruch's composition of Kol Nidreï, one of the most sacred Jewish liturgical songs and prayers. As Isabelle writes, "We are no longer dealing with the popular melody here, but with synagonal rhetoric, in its most profound, contemplative and meditative form. Man implores God with humility and deference."
With their compositions and adaptations, the composers were able to collect and summarize scholarly and popular music while remaining faithful to the deep resonances of the Jewish soul.
"I listened to an inner voice, deep, secret, insistent, ardent, a voice which seemed to come from far beyond myself, a voice which surged up in me on reading passages in the Bible." Ernest Bloch