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History Podcasts

Jewish Witness to a European Century

Jewish Witness to a European Century

Location:

Austria

Description:

Jewish Witness to a European Century

Twitter:

@centropa

Language:

English


Episodes

Ep. 11: Breda Kalef

10/5/2022
She was born with the name Ruchel Kalef. During the war, Father Andrej Tumpej gave her a name to hide behind: Breda. After the war, Ruchel decided, “He gave me more than a name. He gave me a life.” Thanks to Breda, Father Tumpej is now listed as a Righteous Among the Nations. Breda became one of Yugoslavia’s best known mezzo-sopranos. Jane Bertish has appeared on stage in London performing George Bernard Shaw and Tennessee Williams. Her television credits include Rosemary’s Baby and most...

Ep. 10: Matilda Kalef

10/5/2022
Rachel Chanin interviewed Matilda Kalef-Cerge for us 2002, and we have remained in touch Matilda, who recalls both an idyllic childhood in a wealthy Sephardic family, and how she, her mother and sister managed to survive during the Holocaust. Read by Sara Kestelman, whose screen and stage credits include the works of Tolstoy, Shakespeare, Gorky and Marlowe, not to mention Star Wars.

Ep.9: A walk through Belgrade

10/5/2022
Few Jews live in Dorcol today but this quiet corner of Belgrade still evokes its past, when Jewish shops stood cheek by jowl and families scurried off on Friday evenings to synagogue. Ida Labudovic interviewed Vera Amar and Avram Mosic for us in 2002, and both describe what Dorcol was like in its last years. Jilly Bond, who reads Vera Amar, is a regular performer on BBC’s The Archers and has read more than 40 audio books. David Horovitch. With 100 screen credits to his name, David...

Ep.8: Welcome to Belgrade

10/5/2022
We begin our walking tour and podcast in Belgrade’s Kalemegdan, the ancient fortress peering out over the confluence of the Sava and Danube Rivers. In her book, Black Lamb and Grey Falcon, published in 1941, Dame Rebecca West provides us with a short history of Kalemegdan —from the Romans to the Ottomans to the Serbs—and actor Melanie Preston reads an excerpt for you. As we walk down into Dorcol, Stefan Sablic—cantor of the Belgrade synagogue, Ladino singer and musician—will accompany us.

Ep. 7: Kurt Rosenkranz: Vienna to Kazakhstan

3/8/2022
Kurt was obsessed with football (soccer). When the family fled to Riga after 1938 and he became obsessed with Communism. Until a Red Army soldier knocked on their door, ordered the family to follow him, and sent them on a train to a gulag prison camp. “Communism,” Kurt said, “You’re dead to me.” narrated by David Horovitch.

Duration:00:16:43

Ep. 6: Kitty Drill: From Laa an der Thaya to Mauritius

3/8/2022
Kitty Drill came from a family of cattle dealers and fruit sellers. When the Germans occupied Austria, eight mem-bers of her family took a ship down the Danube, another to Haifa, and ended up in a British prison in the Indian Ocean. Narrated by Julia Franklin.

Duration:00:12:05

Ep. 5: Heinz Bischitz: From Oberwaltersdorf to Budapest

3/8/2022
Heinz came from the only Jewish family in their village and got along with everyone. Until Austria was subsumed into the Third Reich. A tale of fleeing to Hungary for safety. Out of the frying pan and into the fire. Narrated by Allan Corduner.

Duration:00:13:47

Ep. 4: Lilli Tauber: From Wiener Neustadt to Cockney Cley

3/8/2022
Lilli was living in a small town when suddenly, all her non-Jewish friends started avoiding her. Then came November 9th. Lilli’s parents desperately looked for a way to save their daughter. Narrated by Sara Kestelman.

Duration:00:14:13

Ep 3: Kitty Suschny: From Vienna to Manchester

3/8/2022
Kitty’s father died of a heart attack well before the Germans marched into Austria. After the Anschluss her brother fled and Kitty’s mother took her to the station. “Don’t worry about me,” she said. “I’m the widow of an army officer.”

Duration:00:16:15

Ep. 2: Sophie Engler: From Vienna to a village in Scotland

3/8/2022
Sophie was born into a wealthy family that would soon lose everything, including the lives of her family. Just nine-years-old when her mother brought her to the train station, Sophie could only hope she’d see her mother again. Narrated by Jilly Bond.

Duration:00:14:29

Ep. 1: Introduction 12. March, 1938

3/8/2022
Introduction to season two of CENTROPA STORIES Edward Serotta Between 2002 and 2009, Tanja Eckstein interviewed 77 elderly Jews here in Vienna. More than half of them had been born here, and were lucky enough to flee after the Germans occupied the country in 1938. Our academic intern Jackie Olson spent months reading through each one of them, then selected six interviews for us. To bring these dramatic stories to life in our second podcast season, we turned to six actors in London and six...

Duration:00:04:30

Ep. 5: Bonus material - Interview with Wendy Goldman

12/21/2021
narrated by: Wendy Goldman Historian Wendy Goldman of Carnegie Mellon on the Soviet Union and the home front during the war. Read Feiga Kil’s Centropa biography and see her pictures here.

Duration:00:22:13

Ep. 4: Feiga Kil’, Riga, Latvia

12/21/2021
narrated by: Sara Kestelman Isaac Aizman was a neurosurgeon in Riga. His wife Tobe-Leya remained at home raising four children. When war came, Dr Aizman was conscriopted into the Soviet Army. He told his wife to flee eastward. She hesitated. And that would cost them all. Read Feiga Kil’s Centropa biography and see her pictures here.

Duration:00:13:20

Ep. 3: Moses Chubat, Chisinau, Moldova

12/21/2021
narrated by: David Horovitch Moses Chubat was but ten years old when the Romanian and German armies invaded Moldova. Barely escaping Chisinau, which was being set ablaze, Moses, his parents and grandparents fled by train, ship and wagon—all the way to Uzbekistan, 4,000 miles from home. Read Moses Chubat’s Centropa biography and view his pictures here

Duration:00:09:37

Ep. 2: Samuel Birger, Jonava, Lithuania

12/21/2021
narrated by: Allan Corduner Samuel Birger tells the harrowing story of what it was like for his family to flee from their shtetl of Jonava as the Germans sped through the country, and more than a few Lithuanians joined in what would become an orgy of killing. The Birger family fled by horse and wagon, by foot, and then by train—until weeks later, they arrived in Tatarstan. Living in wretched poverty, Samuel’s grandmother starved to death while he and his three younger brothers foraged for...

Duration:00:08:56

Ep. 1: Introduction: 22 June, 1941

12/21/2021
The German invasion of the Baltics and the Soviet Union

Duration:00:05:33

June 22, 1941

12/20/2021
On June 22, 1941, Adolf Hitler unleashed Operation Barbarossa, the largest land invasion in history. Intent on destroying the Soviet Union, over 3 million German soldiers streamed through eastern Poland, the Baltic states and into the Soviet Union itself. By the time the Soviet Army had retreated, retrenched and retook their lands, millions of Soviet soldiers and civilians would perish and tens of thousands of villages and towns burned to the ground. But of all those who suffered horribly,...

Duration:00:37:43

Bonus material

6/21/2021
Historian Wendy Goldman of Carnegie Mellon on the Soviet Union and the home front during the war

Duration:00:22:13

June 22, 1941

6/16/2021
On June 22, 1941, Adolf Hitler unleashed Operation Barbarossa, the largest land invasion in history. Intent on destroying the Soviet Union, over 3 million German soldiers streamed through eastern Poland, the Baltic states and into the Soviet Union itself. By the time the Soviet Army had retreated, retrenched and retook their lands, millions of Soviet soldiers and civilians would perish and tens of thousands of villages and towns burned to the ground. But of all those who suffered horribly,...

Duration:00:37:43