1. Date/Time

  2. Location

    Center for Jewish History

    15 W. 16th St.
    New York, NY 10011

    (map)

  3. Admission

    Members: $12
    Non-members: $18

A longtime advocate for music suppressed by the Nazi regime, Polish-Canadian pianist Daniel Wnukowski (vnoo-koff’-skee) makes his New York debut this February as part of a festival dedicated to the music of Galician-Jewish composer Karol Rathaus (1895–1954). Little-known today, Rathaus was a protégé of Franz Schreker and built a successful career in Berlin before fleeing in 1932 due to the deteriorating political situation in Germany. He first migrated to Paris, then to London in 1934. He settled in New York in 1938 and joined the music faculty of Queens College two years later as its first professor of composition.

The upcoming festival is presented by Queens College’s Aaron Copland School of Music and features Mr. Wnukowski in both of its concerts: first performing solo and chamber music by Rathaus, including the U.S. premiere of his recently rediscovered Piano Sonata No. 2, on Thursday, February 21 at 7:30 p.m. at the Center for Jewish History in Manhattan, then performing the composer’s Piano Concerto with The Orchestra Now under Leon Botstein on Sunday, February 24 at 3:00 p.m. at LeFrak Concert Hall on the campus of Queens College.

Prior to these performances, on Tuesday, February 19 at 3:00 p.m., Mr. Wnukowski leads a festival master class at the Aaron Copland School of Music on the piano works of Rathaus and other composers of the early- and mid-20th century. The festival also includes a film screening of the 1936 British drama Broken Blossoms, which features a score by Rathaus, and a lecture by four-time Grammy Award-winning record producer and director of Vienna University’s Exil.Arte center Dr. Michael Haas, who is currently co-producing a documentary about the composer titled Discovering Karol Rathaus. The Aaron Copland School of Music presents the festival in cooperation with The American Society of Jewish Music, Bard College, and The Center for Jewish Studies at Queens College.

For more information about the festival, click here.