Violins of Hope: Leo Camp Lecture

Violins of Hope at Albright College

A pair of free Violins of Hope events at Albright College include a multi-media concert, Nov. 10 and the Leo Camp lecture, Nov. 11.

As the director of the Jewish Federation of Reading, Amanda Hornberger, also coordinator of the Lakin Holocaust Library and Resource Center at Albright College, has been working with a team of organizers to bring incredibly personal stories of Holocaust musicians to our local community. Her hope is that people from all walks of life will make connections between the many individual choices that impacted people during the Holocaust and individual choices that people make today.

Of course, Hornberger is not alone in her charge to bring Violins of Hope to Pennsylvania for the first time. Through the combined resources of the Reading Symphony Orchestra and Jewish Federation of Reading, the Reading project offers 30 events between Nov. 1-14 that include educational programming, exhibits, concerts and more, presented throughout Berks County at local school districts, colleges, cultural centers and other venues.

In fact, several Albrightians have also been involved in planning a pair of free events on Albright’s campus – a multi-media concert on Nov. 10 and the Leo Camp lecture on Nov. 11:

“When the Darkness Came”

Wednesday, Nov. 10, 7:30 p.m., Wachovia Theatre

This multi-media presentation features Francine Black, a professional singer, pianist, linguist, conductor, composer and co-founder of Berks Opera Company. Playing the piano, Black will tell her family’s story of the Holocaust. Music will be performed by Tamara Black (soprano), John Pankratz, Ph.D. (cello), Neil Hoffman, M.D. (basset horn), and Albright’s Lion Chorale, with visual designs by Cocol Bernal. Because there will be limited seating, advance tickets are required.

Leo Camp memorial lecture with “Violins of Hope” author

Thursday, Nov. 11 at 7:30 p.m., Memorial Chapel

James Grymes, Ph.D., musicologist and author of “Violins of Hope: Instruments of Hope and Liberation in Mankind’s Darkest Hour,” accompanied by violin art curator, Avshi Weinstein, will tell the remarkable stories of violins owned and played by Jewish musicians during the Holocaust, and of the Israeli violinmaker dedicated to bringing these inspirational instruments back to life.

Read more in the Reading Eagle, and visit for a complete list of events.

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