Member of Music Teachers Association of California • National Association of Teachers of Singing

Looking Back at This Year

This blog is more of a ‘Thank you’ to all of you who have taken the time to read my blogs over the past few months.  During the pandemic, without the opportunity to have in-person concerts, being able to write about my journey and this project has enabled me to stay connected to all of you and has reminded me why I chose to create a program of rarely performed songs written in the Jewish Ghettos of Eastern Europe in the first place.

As we know, 2020 altered the plans for so many of us. You may not know this but I was in full swing planning and rehearsing a much anticipated  May 30 performance  at the  Los Angeles Central Public Library with LA MADE But of course, as with all live performances, the pandemic caused the concert to be postponed. It was especially disappointing because The Los Angeles Jewish Community Children’s Choir led by Dr. Michelle Green Willner was going to join me on one of my songs.  

The pandemic has not stopped me improving on my program though.  With some very generous monetary gifts, I was able to commission Jewish composers to create new arrangements for now half the songs on my program!  My goal is that the remaining songs will be arranged by my next in-person concert.

This past summer I successfully held a socially distant and masked rehearsal in my backyard  with my accompanists Ben Gown on accordion and Diana Parmeter on cello.  For the first time, we heard the exquisite arrangements of Zachary Meyer and Michelle Willner Green and heard the songs take on a new life! I simply cannot wait to share them with you all.

In addition to continuing to teach my own private voice students on Zoom, I continue to study voice (also through Zoom) with Dr. Katharin Rundus.  Together we find nuances that enhance the performance of each song.

With a new project on the horizon, I can’t wait to tell you all about it when you read my next blog in January 2021!  Please be safe, wear your mask, and continue to help stop the spread of this deadly virus any way you can. 

Wishing you all a healthy and happy New Year full of love, music and joy. 

“I don’t sing because I’m happy; I’m happy because I sing.” – William James

Zay gezunt,

Harriet

Happy New Year! My family supporting me at the debut of my concert April 12, 2018

Husband Dr. Joseph Bennish, daughter Rachel Bennish, me and daughter Jessica Bennish