Moishe Oysher, Master Singer of His People: A musical lecture by Cantor Arik Luck

  • Jewish Community Library 1835 Ellis Street San Francisco, CA 94115

Free admission with free garage parking on Pierce Street between Ellis and Eddy streets.

Cantor Arik Luck will discuss the legacy of Moishe Oysher (1906-1958), a Yiddish cinema matinee idol, Yiddish theater headliner, radio personality, recording artist, and gifted cantor. Born in Bessarabia to a cantorial family, Oysher began acting in school. He joined his father in Canada in 1921, and soon was acting in Yiddish theaters in Winnipeg and Montreal. He moved on to New York’s Yiddish theaters and founded a troupe that toured South America.

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Oysher sang frequently on the radio, starred with his wife, Florence Weiss, on the Yiddish stage, and was an acclaimed High Holy Days cantor. Oysher starred in three important Yiddish films: The Cantor's Son (Dem Khazn's Zindl), 1937; The Singing Blacksmith (Yankl der Shmid), 1938; and Overture to Glory (Der Vilner Shtot Khazn), 1940. He also starred in the independent English-language film Singing in the Dark (1956) about a Holocaust survivor with amnesia.

Cantor Arik Luck recently completed his first year as cantor at Congregation Emanu-El in San Francisco. He has presented his original musical revue, Moishe Oysher: The Master Singer of His People, internationally. Luck has performed as a principal soloist at Symphony Center, the Music Institute of Chicago, Indiana University, and other venues. He served as cantor for Friday evening services at the 2015 Union of Reform Judaism Biennial convention before 5,000 attendees.

Program made possible, in part, by Richard Krieg, in honor of David Medlin, and by Lawrence Burgheimer.

Co-sponsored by the Workmen's Circle/Arbeter Ring of Northern California.

Co-presented by Congregation Emanu-El and KlezCalifornia.