August 8, 2004

Barry friedland
Orange County Klezmers,

Dear Barry,

I’ve finally surfaced after the tumult of last weekend’s wedding for our daughter Jenni and Steve. It was such a remarkable event for all of us – I can’t believe it’s over already. The beauty of it is that it was the most perfect wedding we could ever have imagined. And we are thankful that you and your musicians were part of it.

Only one short generation ago, should a couple decide to marry in a Polish shtetl, the father of the bride would no doubt knock on doors of musicians in his town and say – “you, you bring your clarinet”, “you, you get the drums” and so on until a klezmer group was formed. In modern days, as I did, we do this via the Internet.

How lucky I was to find your klezmer group on a website after searching for various groups in the Orange County area. I so appreciated your first response to my inquiry. Your enthusiasm came through immediately and when you directed me to your website, I was delighted to hear such “freylich” music playing. I was immediately convinced that your group would be the perfect one to perform klezmer music at our daughter’s wedding. But you and your group did even more than provide music. You were such a beautiful group to see – dressed in shtetl clothing and welcoming our guests as they arrived. Some of the comments that were made to us afterward were “as soon as I heard the klezmer music playing, I knew it would be THAT kind of wedding!” And “the minute we heard the klezmer music we knew it would be a joyful celebration.” And, the fun started as soon as we walked in and heard the music playing.” What more could we have asked for? We and our guests were delighted, as was the groom’s family.

But, you did provide something more. None of us could have imagined that our vocalist for the ceremony suddenly became ill. With just a few words from Rabbi Steinberg, you quickly picked up the cue and performed beautifully as we walked down the aisle. You provided the perfect backdrop for the processional and recessional afterward. So much so that none of our guests even guessed that we hadn’t originally planned it that way!

Barry, my husband and I extend our heartfelt and deepest appreciation for your gift of music and the warm sweet way your music greeted and entertained our guests on July 31. We will always remember what a wonderful job you performed and hope to attend many other performances by you and the Orange County Klezmers.


Phyllis Rosenhaft