You might think that since the donation of Jack Saul’s enormous collection of recordings that the JSA would be less than eager to receive even more Judaica recordings. BUT. You would be wrong!
Ariana Goldstein, a student at Woodland Middle School in Gurnee, IL. is a music lover and musician who plays trumpet, bass guitar and acoustic guitar. As she prepared for her Bat Mitzvah she wanted a Mitzvah Project that would reflect her interest in music and her desire to do something meaningful.
Ari contacted the JSA to see if there was any way that she could help us to preserve the recorded music heritage of the Jewish people. “There are still so many recordings out there and we worry that people do not appreciate their historical and cultural value. Do you think you could try to find recordings and send them to us?” we asked her. She took on the challenge.
Ariana had her Bat Mitzvah at the Beth Hillel Temple in Kenosha, WI on October 17, 2009. She had accumulated about 100 recordings that she intended to donate to the JSA. On the evening of December 24, 2009 she and her parents arrived in Boca Raton after a 9 hour car ride. They were tired and they were weary, but they wanted to hand deliver the recordings to us. Although the University was closed at the time, we obtained permission to meet them at the Wimberly Library to accept Ari’s donation.
Ariana started her search for recordings with her grandparents and their friends. Sure enough, many of them had recordings which they did not need or want. Some people could not even listen to the songs because they no longer owned phonograph players.
“What was the hardest part of locating the recordings?” I asked her.
Susan Goldstein, Ari’s mother, explained. “The Newberry Library in Chicago has a book and record sale every year. We went there and Ari sorted through boxes and boxes of recordings looking for the ones she could rescue and bring here.”
“That was really hard!” Ari exclaimed. “Also we got some records from the temple and other people we knew.” she added.
Nathan Tinanoff, Director of the JSA, led the Goldstein family on a tour of the Judaica Sound Archives and awarded Ariana a special “JSA Record Label” plaque in recorgnition of her hard work, the completion of her Mitzvah Project and her contribution to the JSA.
He told the Goldstein family, “These recordings are very important to us. They will be incorporated into our collection.”
It is good for us to remember the past and to cherish our cultrual accomplishments. Yet, the generations to come are the ones who will eventually benefit the most from the cultural treasure which is their legacy.
Submitted by: Maxine Schackman, Assistant Director of JSA