Milken Archive of Jewish Music
The Milken Archive of Jewish Music is a collection of material about the history of Jewish Music in the United States. It contains roughly 700 recorded musical works, 800 hours of oral histories, 50,000 photographs and historical documents, an extensive collection of program notes and essays, and thousands of hours of video footage documenting recording sessions, interviews, and live performances.
The Archive was founded in 1990 by businessman Lowell Milken, with the stated mission to "document, preserve, and disseminate the vast body of music that pertains to the American Jewish experience."  It was originally established as the Milken Family Archive of 20th Century American Jewish Music, with composer Michael Isaacson as its Artistic Director  In 1993, Neil W. Levin of the Jewish Theological Seminary became the Artistic Director and the Archive became known as the Milken Archive of American Jewish music. Between 2003 and 2006, it released a series of 50 CDs on the Naxos label, which have sold nearly 300,000 copies. In 2005, Producer David Frost was awarded the Grammy award for Producer of the Year, Classical, for five of the albums in this series. At present, the Archive's website serves as the primary vehicle for the Archive’s music, and the access point for its other media. The material is organized into 20 thematic groups.
Recent Media CoverageEdit
In its remembrance of Dave Brubeck after his Dec. 5, 2012 passing, PBS Newshour featured footage of the Dave Brubeck Quartet playing Take Five at a 2007 Milken Archive concert and recording session in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania.
In September 2010, Milken Archive Artistic Director Neil Levin was featured on televisions stations across the United States in the documentary 18 Voices Sing Kol Nidre discussing the Kol Nidre, a declaration recited or sung in the synagogue before the beginning of the evening service on every Yom Kippur.
The Milken Archive's collection is organized according to the following 20 thematic groups, known as volumes. As of May 2013, the Archive released 16 of the 20 volumes.
- Jewish Voices in the New World: The Song of Prayer in Colonial and 19th-Century America
- A Garden Eastward: Sephardi and Near Eastern Inspiration
- Seder T'fillot: Traditional and Contemporary Synagogue Services
- Cycle of Life in Synagogue and Home: Prayers and Celebrations Throughout the Jewish Year
- The Classical Klezmer: Rebirth of a Folk Tradition
- Echoes of Ecstasy: Hassidic Inspiration
- Masterworks of Prayer: Art in Worship
- Sing Unto Zion! In Praise of a Jewish National Home
- The Art of Jewish Song: Yiddish and Hebrew
- Intimate Voices: Solo and Ensemble Music of Jewish Spirit
- Symphonic Visions: Orchestral Works of Jewish Spirit
- Legends of Toil and Celebration: Songs of Jewish Solidarity, Social Awareness, and Jewish Americana
- Great Songs of the American Yiddish Stage: Yiddish Theater, Vaudeville, Radio, and Film
- Golden Voices in the Golden Land: The Great Age of Cantorial Art in America
- Swing His Praises: Jazz, Blues, and Rock in the Service of God
- Heroes and Heroines: Jewish Opera
- Odes and Epics: Dramatic Music of Jewish Experience
- Psalms and Canticles: Jewish Choral Art in America
- Out of the Whirlwind: Musical Reflections of the Holocaust
- L'dor vador: A Celebration of Children’s Voices
The Milken Archive has recorded or licensed music by the following composers:
- Teitelbaum, Shell (2003-10-06). "A $17-Million Musical Revival". Jerusalem Report. p. 37. Retrieved 2011-01-25.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2010-11-24. Retrieved 2010-09-15.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) Neil W. Levin Bio
- "Milken Archive of American Jewish Music in Series and Sets. Enjoy Milken Archive of American Jewish Music Music in classical CDS".
- "Dave Brubeck: In His Own Sweet Way (2010)".
- "18 Voices Sing Kol Nidre".
- "Celebrating Jewish Music in America".