2018 Ashkenaz Festival

The 2018 Ashkenaz Festival will take place Tuesday August 28 through Monday September 3 in Toronto, at Harbourfront Centre and other venues around the GTA. The Festival will once again feature artists from across Canada and around the world, including Israel, Russia, Poland, Italy, Australia, Brazil, and the US. Our weeklong celebration will simultaneously showcase diversity and cross-culturalism within the Jewish music and arts world, while also delving deeply into the Yiddishkayt that has always been at the core of our work. This year’s Festival will shine a spotlight on women in Jewish music and culture, highlighting great female artists, past and present, and conveying their centrality in creating, maintaining and evolving Jewish musical and artistic traditions. Other festival highlights will include a number of artists and programs representing the great re-birth of Jewish music and culture in the former Soviet Union, and an exploration of the Polish-Jewish experience through music, film, literature and visual arts, marking a number of significant anniversaries related to that history. We will also feature an incredible evening of diverse Israeli world music at our Sunday mainstage. Watch these pages throughout June and July as we add artist listings and scheduling information. Be sure to join our email list and/or follow our Facebook and Twitter pages for the latest info and updates as they become available.

OPENING CONCERT ANNOUNCEMENT: Yiddish Glory will open the Festival on August 28 at Koerner Hall. Click here for details!

USE THESE BUTTONS TO FIND IMPORTANT FESTIVAL INFO AND BROWSE FESTIVAL ARTISTS BY DISCIPLINE

Featured Performers

A-Wa   Israel

One of Israel’s most exciting world music acts, A-WA(pronounced Ay-Wa)is formed by three sisters who combine the ancient oral history of Yemenite Read More

Salomé: Woman of Valor   Vancouver/NYC

Created by and featuring Frank London and Adeena Karasick Innovative, transformative and daring, “Salomé: Woman of Valor” is the culmination of years of Read More

Eleanor Reissa & Frank London’s Klezmer Brass Allstars   New York City

Sultry vocals, inventive arrangements and downtown NYC attitude drive this spirited collaboration between two giants of the Jewish culture scene. Eleanor Reissais Read More

Gili Yalo   Ethiopia/Israel

Gili Yalo is one of the most intriguing new artists in Israel’s world music scene. Combining his Ethiopian musical roots with soul, Read More

Yiddish Glory   Russia/Canada

YIDDISH GLORY IS OFFICIALLY SOLD OUT AS OF AUGUST 15 Hailed by more than 100 critics and journalists around the world, Yiddish Read More

Global Shtetl

Toronto holds a reputation as a global music city and cosmopolitan hub where tourists can sample the cultures and foods of diverse Read More

YID!   Australia

Conceived by Melbourne musician Simon Starr, YID! is an extraordinary 22-piece collective of virtuoso musicians that unfurls a joyous, edgy and ferociously-danceable Read More

Lara St. John & Matt Herskowitz   New York City/Montreal

“Lavuta: Violin Without Borders” Canadian-born violinist Lara St. John has been described as “something of a phenomenon” (The Strad), a “volcanic violinist” Read More

Dobranotch   Russia

Russia’s Dobranotch performs its own irreverent brand of Jewish, Gypsy and Balkan music, drawing on the band’s deep knowledge of traditions and Read More

An Evening of Polish & Polish-Jewish Music

Featuring Olga Mieleszczuk (Poland), Polky Village Band (Toronto) and a pre-concert talk by Kajetan Prochyra (Poland). $20 at the door or $50 Read More

Socalled String Quartet   Montreal

Montreal’s Socalled (aka. Josh Dolgin) is one of Canada’s leading exports to the international Yiddish music scene. He is best-known as a Read More

The Bashevis Singers   Australia

The Bashevis Singers are the descendants of generations of people who lived their lives in Yiddish. Siblings Evie and Husky Gawenda and their Read More

A Tribute to Elaine Hoffman Watts   USA/Canada

Featuring SUSAN LANKIN-WATTS and special guests TSIBELE, MARILYN LERNER and RACHEL LEMISCH Elaine Hoffman Watts z”l (1932-2017) was a legendary musician and Read More

Reflections of a Lost Poet: The Life and Works of Itsik Manger   Florida

Featuring AVI HOFFMAN (Miami) with Nina Shapilsky (Toronto) Written by Miriam Hoffman | Performed in Yiddish with English surtitles Following his triumphant run Read More

Address Unknown   Florida

Featuring AVI HOFFMAN (Miami) and STEPHEN BOGAERT (Toronto) Written by Kathrine Kressmann Taylor, edited by Frank Dunlop The shocking story of a Read More

If It Be Your Will: An All-Canadian Tribute to Leonard Cohen   Canada

PLEASE NOTE THAT AN-ALL-CANADIAN TRIBUTE TO LEONARD COHEN IS OFFICIALLY SOLD OUT AS OF AUGUST 29. A one-of-a-kind concert celebrating the life Read More

Ben Caplan   Halifax

Ben Caplanis a songwriter, performer and entertainer in the most time-honoured sense of the word. From the moment he walks onto the Read More

Choro Das 3   Sao Paolo, Brazil

Choro das Tresis a vibrant and virtuosic instrumental ensemble comprised of three sisters and their father who carry on the rich tradition Read More

The Prince and the Dybbuk (2017)   Germany/Poland

Directed by Elwira Niewiera & Piotr Rosołowski (Germany/Poland) English, Italian, Spanish, Polish & German with English subtitles, 82 minutes A dybbuk in Read More

Narishkayt: YidLife Crisis in Krakow (2018)   Canada/Poland, 2018

Directed by Paulina Fiejdasz (Canada/Poland), English and Yiddish with English Subtitles, 37 minutes “YidLife Crisis” is a Yiddish comedy web series and Read More

“The Room in the Elephant”   Los Angeles

A multi-disciplinary exhibition featuring the work of Benny Ferdman (Los Angeles) Los Angeles-based artist Benny Ferdman juxtaposes and reinterprets images and narratives Read More

Ashkenaz Parade

Gather at 3:45pm One of the signature events of the Ashkenaz Festival, this year’s Parade brings to life our site-wide visual arts Read More

THIS IS ONLY A PARTIAL LISTING OF ALL FESTIVAL ARTISTS AND PERFORMANCES. USE THE ICONS AT TOP OF PAGE TO BROWSE COMPLETE FESTIVAL LISTINGS BY ARTISTIC DISCIPLINE