Renowned Cantor Alberto Mizrahi Performs, Speaks at Event on Holocaust in Greece

Renowned Jewish Cantor Alberto Mizrahi performing at the event in the series An Untold Tale: The Holocaust in Greece. Photo: John Ackerman

MILWAUKEE, WI – On February 18, at the Jewish Community Center in Whitefish Bay, renowned Cantor Alberto Mizrahi performed a free concert and gave remarks in the forth presentation in the educational series entitled An Untold Tale: The Holocaust in Greece. A crowd of over 250 attended this powerful, emotional presentation.

One of the world’s leading interpreters of Jewish music, Cantor Mizrahi is the Hazzan of the Anshe Emet Synagogue in Chicago. He presented a concert of Jewish, Greek and Mediterranean music and spoke about his background as the son of Greek Holocaust survivor parents. Both of Cantor Mizrahi’s parents were from Greece, met after the war, and married. His father was one of the last sonderkommandos in Auschwitz-Birkenau.

Born in Greece, Cantor Mizrahi credits the man he is today to being the son of these remarkable individuals. He has performed cantorial music, opera, and jazz in recitals and symphony concerts around the world; has made numerous recordings; and has appeared in a number of Jewish documentary films.

This was the forth in a series of educational presentations being held in Milwaukee throughout January, February and March of 2018 concerning the Holocaust in Greece and the heroic effort by the Greek Orthodox Church and citizens of Greece to shelter and hide Greece’s Jewish population from the Nazi forces during World War II.

The series, An Untold Tale: The Holocaust in Greece is being offered thanks to the efforts of the Jewish Community Center of Milwaukee, the Nathan & Esther Pelz Holocaust Education Resource Center, the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago, Sts. Constantine & Helen Greek Orthodox Parish of Wauwatosa, and Annunciation Greek Orthodox Parish of Milwaukee.

Renowned Cantor Alberto Mizrahi performed and spoke at the free event with over 250 in people attendance. Photo: John Ackerman

The Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago encourages not only our Greek Orthodox parishioners of the Milwaukee area but our parishioners throughout our great Metropolis to attend and participate in two remaining sessions in this outstanding series of presentations that recognize and honor the heroic efforts of our fathers and grandfathers. All of these events are free and open to the public.

Upcoming events in the series:

Wednesday, February 21 at 7 PM

Location: Harry & Rose Samson Family Jewish Community Center, 6255 N. Santa Monica Blvd in Milwaukee, WI

Film and Book Discussion

Film: In the Shadow of the Acropolis (2008)

Learn the compelling story of an ancient Jewish culture – the Romaniotes – that was almost totally annihilated during the Holocaust. Told through the eyes of one family that survived the Holocaust in Greece. 30 minutes. Suitable for ages 13 and up. 

Book Discussion: Miracle at Zakynthos: The Only Greek Jewish Community Saved in Its Entirety from Annihilation (2014). Almost ninety percent of Greek Jews perished during the Holocaust under the Nazi occupation. An incredible exception was the Jewish community of Zathynos, a remote mountain village, where Greek Christians courageously saved their entire Jewish community. Instructor: Dr. Shay Pilnik.

Tuesday, March 20 at 7 PM    

Location:  Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church, 9440 W Congress St, Wauwatosa, WI

Lecture by Bishop Demetrios of Mokissos celebrating the Legacy of Archbishop Theophilos Damaskinos, recognized by Yad Vashem as one of the Righteous Among the Nations.

This special lecture marks the 75th anniversary of the historic letter written by Archbishop Damaskinos protesting the Nazis’ treatment of the Jews in Greece. Archbishop Damaskinos was the archbishop of Greece during World War II and was a leader against the German policy of annihilating the Jews of Greece. He wrote letters against deportation policies; helped facilitate the creation of false identity papers; and encouraged clergy in Greece to hide, aid, and save Greek Jews. Instructor: Representative of the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago.