“Talking Klezmer” (Klezmer Improvisation) (en)


A playful approach to improvisation – for beginners and professional musicians
In 1993 Helmut Eisel offered the first workshops on Klezmer improvisations. “Klezmer” in the original meaning of the word means that a musician does not “make” music, but acts as a medium between music and audience. Taking up this idea, people can enrich their lives with music – whether music be their hobby, their profession or simply a source of pleasure.
The applications of this approach are manifold: playful training of perceptions, communication and rhythm making; singing collective improvisations and broadening musical expressiveness; trainig the dialogical power of music or even creating a common concert. Learning through improvisation also allows the participants to become familiar with typical components of Klezmer music: scales and rhythms that are both exotically foreign and pleasantly familiar.
Helmut Eisel has worked with hobby and professional musicians, with actors and actresses, with pupils and teachers at various types of schools (eg. elementary, grammar schools) and with patients in therapeutic institutions.
Target group Dedicated hobby musicians (at least 2-3 years instrumental practice) are as warmly welcome as professional musicians. You should be able to read music. The workshop is structured in a way that every participant will be able to individually extend and enrich his/her musical and improvisatory capabilities.
The workshops is suitable for all instruments as well as voices, which are also used in an instrumental way (without text). Whole bands and ensmbles are welcome to join and will gather valuable stimulation and orientation for their musical group-work. In connection with concerts, Helmut Eisel also offers introductory workshops (Schnupperworkshops) about the above mentioned topics.

  • Oslo Music Academy
  • Bente Kahan Foundation, Breslau
  • Klezmer and th Clarinet in the Galilee, Safed / Jerusalem
  • SOBI-Bielefeld
  • PKC Ehemalige Synagoge Freudental
  • Bildungshaus Kloster Schöntal
  • Hospitalhof Stuttgart
  • Richard-Strauss-Konservatorium München
  • Rudolf Steiner Schule Dortmund
  • Musikakademie Weichs’scher Hof Arnsberg
  • Schulprojekte in Wien, Steinakirchen und Stainach im Auftrag des Österreichischen Kulturservice
  • Trainings for teachers at music schools in Niedersachsen, Hildesheim (for the German Music Council), for teachers at music schools in Baden-Württemberg, for teachers at Musicus e.V. (muscial school for handicapped people), Bielefeld
  • Lectures at the annual convention of German Musicians (Leipzig 2001) about Klezmer improvisations in teaching music