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The Oil City Arts Council will present "Who Are These Germans?" a unique look at Holocaust history and how young Germans today are coping with their country's past on Friday, April 22, at 7 p.m. in the Robert W. Rhoades auditorium at Clarion University-Venango Campus. The program is free and open to the public.

The performance incorporates music with the memories of Fritz Ottenheimer, author of Escape and Return, a chronicle of his childhood as a Jewish boy growing up in Nazi Germany and his escape to the United States in 1939, where he joined the U.S. Army and fought against his people's tormentors. His book was praised by Nobel Prize-winning Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel, founder of the Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity.

The music is provided by Susanne Ortner-Roberts, an internationally known German musician and soloist whose expressive interpretation of Klezmer music is noted for its authenticity, depth, beauty, and warmth. She uses her music to promote cross-cultural understanding and to educate others about how young Germans today deal with the atrocities of war and Holocaust committed by their grandparents' generation.

She is accompanied by her husband, Tom Roberts, who is one of the leading exponents of early jazz piano in the world today. Roberts has arranged and performed the music for the soundtrack of Martin Scorsese's film The Aviator, as well as several titles for the film DeLovely. He has performed twice at New York City's Carnegie Hall, at New York's prestigious Jazz in July, and was the featured pianist at the International Stride Piano Summit in Zurich, Switzerland in 2001.

The performance provides an eye-opening glimpse into the Holocaust and tackles the idea of what it means to be German in the 21st Century. A discussion and question and answer period will follow the performance.

For more information, contact Venango Campus Student Affairs at 814-676-6591, ext. 1269.

Clarion University–Venango Campus, located in Oil City, is the oldest regional campus in Pennsylvania's State System of Higher Education. The campus provides high-quality educational programs and personalized services to help students succeed. Students can begin any of Clarion University's 90+ bachelor's degrees at the Venango Campus, earn an associate degree, a bachelor's or master's degree in select areas, obtain a one-year certificate or participate in a variety of professional development and personal enrichment courses. The campus is home to Clarion University's School of Nursing and Allied Health, the Department of Applied Technology, and the Venango Department of Arts and Sciences. Clarion University–Venango Campus is committed to serving the needs of the community.
Published
4/13/2011 2:00 PM

Arts Council to Present Unique Program About the Holocaust