Bio


Olga Avigail Mieleszczuk is a singer, accordion player and researcher of Eastern European musical folklore. Born in Warsaw, she lives now in Jerusalem. Olga is educated in classical music (B.A., Chopin University of Music in Warsaw) and holds a Master’s degree in Cultural Anthropology (Warsaw University). Since the very beginning of her creative work, she has concentrated on Ashkenazi Jewish music, especially from the borderlands of Poland. She has studied Chassidic music, Yiddish folk songs, and multilingual Jewish songs. 

Olga has performed at the Lincoln Center in New York, the Kenedy Center in Washington, the Manhattan JCC New York, The Jewish Museum in Oslo, the Eden-Tamir Music Centre in Jerusalem, the Ashkenaz Festival in Toronto, the Klezkanada Festival, the Singer Jewish Music Festival in Warsaw, the Chutzpah! Festival in Vancouver, the Jewish Music Festival in Berkeley California, the Spanish Synagogue in Prague Czech, the Festival Piyut in Jerusalem, the Principio Theatre Zamora Spain, at the JCC in Copenhagen, the Grand Theatre in Kaliningrad Russia, and many other venues.

In 2013 with a group of musicians from Israel and USA, she initiated the project "Jewish Polesye", which resulted in her debut album. Olga was inspired by the eclectic set of musical material from the repertoire of the 1930's era Jewish folk singer Mariam Nirenberg. Nirenberg comes from Polesye, which used to be a borderland of cultures and languages, one of the wildest regions in Europe. The project evokes the lost world of the multicultural Polesye, where Yiddish interwined with Ukrainian and Polish. Its premiere took place at Lincoln Center in New York. It was successfully presented in various festivals of Jewish music and cultures all around the world (USA, Canada, Slovakia, Poland, Russia, Israel).

Olga then turned to urban music. "Li-La-Lo" is the name of the second album and at the same time a musical cabaret, set up in Tel Aviv in 1944 by the pianist and composer Moshe Wileński and poet Natan Alterman, who emigrated to the Land of Israel from Warsaw. Based on works of pre-war cabarets, Li-La-Lo achieved great success. Olga and her musicians began performing songs, which were popular in Warsaw and Jerusalem in the 1940's.

Her next project "Yiddish tango" was born from the cooperation with leading Polish tango musicians Tango Attack. They created new arrangements for the pre-war Warsaw tangos.
The vast majority of songs were composed by Polish Jews and it's uniqueness came from the combination of  Slavic and Jewish elements mixed with Argentinian musical influences. Tango hits were written in Polish and Yiddish. 
Yiddish Tango was performed in prestigious venues in USA, Canada, Europa and Israel.
Olga concerts often features special guest performers, such as legendary Polish singer Sława Przybylska, famous Yiddish singer from Israel Alexander Fisz and musicians as Mario Jeka -  and Ittai Binnun - clarinet players or acclaimed jazz pianist from Toronto Ron Davis. 

More information: Yiddish Tango


4 comments:

  1. I came upon Olga by accident on You Tube. I'm hooked. She sings beautifullly. Her Yiddish tango songs are fabulous. And so is the three-piece band that she works with. Stephen Miller (Reston, VA USA)

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  2. Marvelous voice and profond insight in yiddish folksong

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  3. My respect! It's a huge contribution to Polish and Jewish Culture and Friendship.

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