North Shore audiences will have an early opportunity to hear some of the sounds of the Boston Jewish Music Festival during a special preview concert tonight in Newburyport.
The fourth annual festival will run from tomorrow through March 10. As part of efforts to expand the musical program outside of the Greater Boston area, organizers have arranged to bring a klezmer concert to Congregation Ahavas Achim tonight.
“We’re very excited about this, it’s a great opportunity,” said Rabbi Avi Poupko of Congregation Ahavas Achim.
Not only does the concert have a wide appeal for the Greater Newburyport region, he added, but tonight is the first time the music festival has hosted a concert on the North Shore since it began three years ago.
Tonight’s concert will feature famed international musicians Cesar Lerner and Marcelo Moguilevsky, who are making their first appearance in Boston. The duo, who hail from Buenos Aires Argentina, blend jazz, tango, folk music, contemporary music while showcasing klezmer, a type of Eastern European Jewish music that has become increasingly more popular during the past several decades.
The pair are both multi-instrumental. Moguilevsky combines his vocal skills with clarinet, bass, soprano sax, wooden flutes, harmonica, bagpipe and duduk, while Lerner plays piano, accordion and percussion.
“It’s a really unique style of music,” Poupko said of klezmer.
He added in a statement, “Listening to klezmer captures the paradoxical emotions of a Jewish life, profound joy mixed with moments of sadness.”
Jim Ball, a co-founder of the Boston Jewish Music Festival, said organizers reached out to several temples on the North Shore, as well as the North Shore Jewish Federation to determine if there was interest in hosting a preview concert.
Newburyport, Nashua, N.H. and Portsmouth, N.H. all will host concerts over the next several days.
“Our philosophy for the music festival is that we like to bring the music to the people, rather than just (hold concerts) in downtown Boston,” Ball said.
The concert is sponsored by the North Shore Jewish Federation. More than 17,000 people have attended the Boston Jewish Music Festival during the past three years. Started in 2009 by Joey Baron and Ball, the festival seeks to enhance appreciation for all forms of Jewish music, while also introducing the genre to a wider audience. The festival offers a mix of concerts, workshops and forums.
IF YOU GO What: The Boston Jewish Music Festival preview concert When: Tonight, 7:30 p.m. Where: Congregation Ahavas Achim, 53 1/2 Washington St., Newburyport How: $20 at the door. Tickets are $18 in advance and can be purchased at http://bjmfnorthshore.bpt.me/.