IN THIS ISSUE:
Message from Stuart E. Eizenstat, Board Chairman
Dear Friends of The Defiant Requiem Foundation,
I am pleased to report that 2016 was another enormously successful year for The Defiant Requiem Foundation. Among many other events, it featured two performances of Defiant Requiem: Verdi at Terezín in Anchorage, Alaska, an extraordinary collaboration with the Czech Center New York for our annual Rafael Schächter Institute for Arts and Humanities, and the Israeli premiere of Murry Sidlin’s newest concert-drama, Hours of Freedom: The Story of the Terezín Composer, as part of the Israel Festival Jerusalem.
This past year also included a remarkably successful performance in Vienna of Defiant Requiem at the Wiener Konzerthaus with the Orchester Wiener Akademie, the Czech Philharmonic Choir Brno and magnificent soloists and actors. Thanks are again due to former Austrian Chancellor Wolfgang Schüssel; Ambassador Hans Winkler; former U.S. Ambassador to Austria Swanee Hunt (to whose late husband Charles Ansbacher we dedicated the concert); former U.S. Ambassador to Austria Lee Brown; Dr. Herbert Pichler, Managing Director, Bank and Insurance Division, Austrian Federal Economic Chamber; Hannah Lessing of the Austrian National Fund; and Prof. Herwig Hösele of the Austrian Future Fund for their support of this performance. In addition, we are grateful to Doris Bures, President of the Austrian Parliament, under whose auspices this concert was given. It was also gratifying to have so many Foundation Board Members join us in Vienna for the performance. Morris Antonelli, Ambassador Randy Bell (who deserves special praise for his untiring efforts to bring Defiant Requiem to Vienna), J.D. Bindenagel, Patti Kenner, Marion Lewin, and Katja Manor all made the trip in support of our Austrian premiere.
As we look ahead to 2017, it promises to be another banner year for The Defiant Requiem Foundation. With eight performances of Defiant Requiem: Verdi at Terezín planned between January and June, it will be our busiest concert season ever. Included among these performances is our UK premiere in January at Durham Cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage Site; a concert to benefit the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago’s Holocaust Community Services program in March; and our first performances on the subscription series of a major orchestra with the Detroit Symphony this May. Add to these a first-of-its-kind tour to historic Czech synagogues throughout the country that were beautifully restored as part of the European Union funded 10 Stars Project – which enabled the reconstruction, restoration, and preservation of important Jewish historical buildings in ten towns in Bohemia, Moravia, and Silesia – and we have much to be proud of and excited about in the year ahead.
All of these activities would not possible without the generous support of our donors. For those who have given already this year, thank you. If you have not given in 2016, please consider a year-end gift that will be matched dollar-for-dollar by Allan and Shelley Holt/The Hillside Foundation. It is critical that we make full use of this extraordinary gesture by Allan and Shelley Holt.
Please give as generously as you can to help us keep the memory of the courageous prisoners and artists at Theresienstadt alive, and sustain our critically important, contemporary mission of demonstrating how the arts and humanities can provide hope for people in the worst of circumstances.
With thanks for your continued support of The Foundation.
Stuart E. Eizenstat