Dalla Musica Ebraica Sefardita al Kletzmer
In ricordo del Bar Mizvah-בר מצוה
אמאתו אלכסנדר יוסף אברהם פארפיט
IN OCCASIONE DELLA FESTA DELLA MUSICA E MUSEQUALITY WORLD BUSK 2012
Angela Yael Amato al violino ed il Gruppo Musicale Sefarad di Serrastretta
Following the Musequality World Busk Concerts in June 21-27-2012 in the Napoli Jewish Quarter from Quartiere San Lorenzo to Forcella, which included Sefardi Music performed for the first time after over 500 years by the Ensemble Musicale Giovanile, in San Gennaro All'Olmo and St. Maria delle Anime del Purgatorio ad Arco, the last appointment of the series will be in Serrastretta, Calabria a small village near Lamezia Terme, where in Nicastro, once existed an old Jewish Quarter called Timpone. Some of these families came from another village called Amato, on top of the "Serre" which in Spanish indicates mountains, and kept their Jewish names into the families, like Rcahele, Yossef, Haim, Stella etcetera. Amato, originally Amado or Habib, was a typical surname from the Iberian Peninsula. Several of these families emigrated to Rodes, Salonikka and Izmir and several of them were Chief Rabbis, and extremely observant Jews, who later also emigrated to the Americas, both in South America and the USA.
The presence of a Jewish Population in Calabria, after the expulsion time during Inquisition in South Italy, which moved a large number of Sicilian Jews in the Continent, was expected to be around 40% of the population, which gradually moved also up to Napoli, the capital of the Kingdom of South Italy. Therefore a close connection between the Sicilian, Calabrian, Neapolitan Jewish families is certain. However once in the Capital the "Sicilian" Jews also mixed with the northern Jewish immigrations which from Spain and Portugal came through Livorno, Ancona, Ferrara etcetera. The Jews from the north also emigrated from the Iberian Peninsula likewise the Sicilian Jews, but had better possibilities to settle, as often had close relationships with the local Governors and its Aristocracy who supported their trades towards the Oriental Countries. Jews from Sicily once expelled from the south lost most of their wealth. However, brought with themselves something which no one could ever take away from them: since several of these families had Rabbinical and Kabalistic traditions their strong faith imposed them to be more observant of the traditions rather than losing them. It is a fact that several of the Conversos believed that the only way forward would be to hide as Crypto-Jews rather than finding another place or risking to lose their lives and therefore extinguish themselves for ever. Many Conversos believed that one day, by keeping the Traditions from their father's, in a better time, they would come back and knew that by keeping these traditions they would still remain Jewish in their own Anusim Communities however not any-longer part of the Jewish Nation. The Anusim Tradition changed from group to group, and it is impossible to identify all of them into one kind of tradition, however, Anusim knew which Rabbinical tradition needed to be kept in order to permitted them to remain Jewish even in case they had lost the knowledge of being Jewish whereas strict family practices guaranteed this important part of remaining into the Anusim group. We may say that one particular common attitude amongst them beside the traditions is exactly having faith, everything was lost for them except this sentiment which accompanied them from generation to generation, giving them the strength to continue with their practices and love for their origins. The family traditions and costumes were so strong to make them observing the Mizvoth with love for the observance, love which in Judaism is the higher part of the observance and the one which permits to guarantee the secure transmission from generation to generation, love which was one of the major part of the education transmitted by teaching through Mizvoth-actions as for these Jews to whom it had been forbidden to have any open religious observance, all was kept into family practices, but Judaism is action therefore their observance has been valid so far and they were completely aware of this. In the other side being these Jews so deep into anything which was studying and improving their moral education, they were completely dedicated to simple life, and often suited them to live in remote mountains not only as a refugee, but also as part of their typical Mystical-Meditating Lifestyle, like their Kabbalist-Talmudist fathers who not only were father's of the main Jewish scripts, but also believed that Judaism is positive actions and love for the human world.