Special Event

Toledo Museum of Art Peristyle

February 20, 2020

Concert Time: 7:00 pm

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In commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II, witness this beacon of hope born from within the walls of a concentration camp during the Holocaust.

Written by Hans Krása and performed 55 times by the children of Theresienstadt concentration camp, Brundibár inspires both horror and wonder to this day. Two weeks after the Nazis filmed the production for their own propaganda, Krása and almost all of the children who performed in the opera were deported to Auschwitz where they perished.

This performance is made possible by the following sponsors:

The Anne Frank in the World Fund of the Greater Toledo Community Foundation, The Ruth Fajerman Markowicz Holocaust Resource Center of Greater Toledo, The Jewish Federation of Greater Toledo, and Margaret Sattler.

Special Presentation by Tamar Grishpon

The evening opens with a special presentation by Tamar Grishpon, the daughter of Holocaust survivor Ela Weissberger who played the role of the Cat in every performance of Brundibár.

Tamar Grishpon’s appearance is made possible by Dr. Allen and Hindea Markowicz.

But the Giraffe

Toledo School for the Arts Singers
By Tony Kushner & Maurice Sendak

David Saygers, artistic director
Juliette Quinlan, stage director
Jamie Dauel, choral director
Zann Campbell-Johannes, technical director

Written by Tony Award-winning playwrights Tony Kushner and Maurice Sendak and based on the extraordinary true events of how Hans Krása’s Brundibár score was smuggled into Theresienstadt concentration camp during World War II, But the Giraffe tells the story of a family that must relocate to a new home and a little girl faced with the difficult decision of taking her beloved stuffed giraffe or her uncle’s score.


Toledo Symphony Orchestra
Toledo School for the Arts Singers
Music by Hans Krása
Libretto by Adolf Hoffmeister
Performed in English

Steven Jarvi, conductor
David Saygers, artistic director
Juliette Quinlan, stage director
Jamie Dauel, choral director
Zann Campbell-Johannes, technical director

Brundibár tells the story of siblings Aninka and Pepíček who must travel to the market to fetch milk for their dying mother. When a greedy street musician named Brundibár tries to chase them away, a trio of animals—a dog, cat, and sparrow—come to the rescue!

Tickets to the entire evening are $20. A portion of the proceeds from the evening performance will go to support The Ruth Fajerman Markowicz Holocaust Resource Center.

Tamar Grinshpon is Ela Weissberger's daughter. Ela (of blessed memory) survived the Terezin concentration camp from 1942-1945.  During her imprisonment, Ela played the role of the Cat in the children's opera "Brundibar." 

Tamar has traveled  across the U.S. and abroad with Ela recounting her experience during the Holocaust. Tamar has retired from a career in Interior Design and now calls herself a Story teller/memory keeper. She currrently lives in Cary, North Carolina with her husband. She still travels and speaks around the world to honor the memory of Ela and her friends that didn't survive.




Praised for his “uncommonly expressive and detailed” performances by the Miami Herald and described as an “eloquent and decisive” conductor by The Wall Street JournalSteven Jarvi is a conductor with an equal passion for the concert hall and the opera house. Mr. Jarvi is the Music Director of the Dearborn Symphony and former Resident Conductor of the St. Louis Symphony. He won the Bruno Walter Memorial Foundation Award while the Associate Conductor of the Kansas City Symphony, and previously served as the Conducting Fellow with Michael Tilson Thomas and the New World Symphony in Miami Beach, an Associate Conductor for New York City Opera at Lincoln Center, and the Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Conductor with the Washington National Opera at the Kennedy Center.

As Resident Conductor of the St. Louis Symphony, Jarvi conducted over 100 events, including Classical Subscription weekends, the Live at Powell Hall concert series, Family and Educational concerts, and other events throughout the season. He also assisted Music Director, David Robertson, and served as the Music Director of the St. Louis Symphony Youth Orchestra whose performances were recently featured on PBS.

While Associate Conductor of the Kansas City Symphony, Jarvi led over 150 concerts and performed during the opening season of the Kaufmann Center for the Performing Arts. He made his Classical Series debut filling in on short notice with Violinist, Midori. The following season, after studying in Vienna with principal members of the Vienna Philharmonic, Jarvi led a highly praised subscription weekend of Viennese music featuring pianist, Simone Dinnertstein.

As a guest conductor, Mr. Jarvi has appeared in the U.S., Canada and Europe. Recent engagements include Washington National Opera, Detroit Symphony, Nashville Symphony, Edmonton Symphony, Sarasota Orchestra, Louisiana Philharmonic, Orlando Philharmonic, Knoxville Symphony, Rochester Philharmonic, The Florida Orchestra, Charleston Symphony, Southwest Florida Symphony, Charlotte Symphony, Elgin Symphony, Toledo Symphony and Ensemble Modern in Frankfurt, Germany. Jarvi has also performed with popular Grammy© Award-winners Idina Menzel, Art Garfunkel, Lyle Lovett, Chris Botti and Kenny G as well as performances with Ben Folds.

In the world of opera, Mr. Jarvi was personally selected by Plácido Domingo to be the first conductor ever invited to be a member of the Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program at the Kennedy Center’s Washington National Opera and frequently collaborates with the finest singers in the world. Recent engagements include the world premieres of An American Soldier and Approaching Ali with Washington National Opera, Philip Glass' Orphée, La TraviataToscaThe Ballad of Baby DoeFalstaffLucia di LammermoorIl Barbiere di SivigliaDie Zauberflöte, Rigoletto, Madama ButterflyLa Boheme, Susannah, and Cosi fan tutte with companies such as Virginia Opera, North Carolina Opera, Winter Opera Saint Louis, Baltimore Lyric Opera, and Charlottesville/Ash Lawn Opera Festival. Jarvi will return to Charlottesville to conduct Le Nozze di Figaro in the summer of 2018.

A frequent performer with the New World Symphony, Jarvi has shared subscription concerts in Miami Beach with Michael Tilson Thomas, conducted on the NWS Charles Ives: In Context Festival and lead their Concerts for Kids, and PULSE events. As an advocate of new music, he has collaborated with many celebrated composers including Philip Glass, Henri Dutilleux, John Adams, John Zorn, Augusta Read Thomas, Steven Mackey, Adam Schoenberg, Jennifer Higdon and Leon Kirchner; has conducted at Tanglewood’s Festival of Contemporary Music, and has led multiple performances at New York City Opera’s VOX Festival.

At the age of 21, Steven traveled to Austria at the invitation of Claudio Abbado for study with the maestro and the Berlin Philharmonic at the Salzburg Easter Festival. Former New York Philharmonic Music Director, Kurt Masur, later selected him to appear in a weeklong master class and concert. As the Seiji Ozawa Conducting Fellow at the Tanglewood Music Center, Steven was one of two conductors selected to study under then Boston Symphony and Metropolitan Opera Music Director, James Levine, along with Kurt Masur, Stefan Asbury and Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos. While at Tanglewood, Jarvi conducted critically praised performances with the Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra, and the Mark Morris Dance Group.

Raised in Grand Haven, Michigan, Steven Jarvi holds a Bachelor's degree in Music Theory from the University of Michigan where he studied with Kenneth Kiesler, Martin Katz and Jerry Blackstone, along with a Master's in Orchestral Conducting from the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, where he studied with the legendary conducting pedagogue, Gustav Meier.

This concert is presented in collaboration with 

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