Size / / /

Among my favorite memories of childhood, listening to holiday albums ranks among the very best. And I would have to say that this one has now been added to my list.

I had no idea what to expect when this CD arrived in the mail. While I'm familiar with klezmer music, I haven't really listened to a lot. (My loss!) I'm also familiar with The Nutcracker. But this . . . is different.

The Golden Dreydl cover

The klezmer music is so alive -- a mixture of instruments not normally associated with classical music: trombone, banjo, piano, drums, and tuba. (Well, perhaps the last three -- but certainly not the banjo!) There are echoes of Tchaikovsky, but there's much more than that. It's rollicking and lively -- as well as very visual. And there's a story, written by Ellen Kushner, combining suspense, magic, myth, adventure -- all the key ingredients required to hold one's interest. The heroine is Sara, a typical little girl who fights with her brother and manages to get in trouble. But she also manages to save a friend. And along the way, she learns some valuable lessons. This is not a retelling of the Nutcracker. Rather, it is fresh, different story, incorporating elements of Jewish mythology and folklore to create something new and enjoyable -- and educational as well. This CD will become a traditional favorite for young and old.

Ellen Kusher is a writer, radio host, and performer. She is host and writer of the weekly series PRI's Sound and Spirit with Ellen Kushner, and her newest novel The Fall of Kings (written with Delia Sherman) has just been released by Bantam Books. Here are Web sites for more information about The Golden Dreydl and for information about upcoming performances.


Reader Comments

Peggi Warner-Lalonde is Senior Music Editor for Strange Horizons.

Current Issue
20 Mar 2023

Strange Horizons will be open to fiction submissions on April 26th, 2023, at 9 a.m. UTC! To keep our response times manageable and submission windows more frequent, there will be a 1,000-story cap on submissions.
It started with a bit of music, something no one else was even listening to.
My father’s favorite nebula, Lemon Slice, is named after his favorite dessert.
The Police are dancing under the red lights / without their heads
Friday: Full Immersion by Gemma Amor 
Issue 13 Mar 2023
Issue 6 Mar 2023
Issue 20 Feb 2023
Issue 13 Feb 2023
Issue 6 Feb 2023
Issue 30 Jan 2023
By: Catherine Rockwood
By: Romie Stott
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Catherine Rockwood
Podcast read by: Romie Stott
Podcast read by: Maureen Kincaid Speller
Issue 23 Jan 2023
Issue 16 Jan 2023
Issue 9 Jan 2023
Strange Horizons
2 Jan 2023
Welcome, fellow walkers of the jianghu.
Load More
%d bloggers like this: