A concert to celebrate the 45th anniversary of the founding of the Fayerlakh Jewish song and dance ensemble took place December 18 with an overflow crowd of well-wishers and fans. A large screen projection by the stage relayed images to those in the very back of the hall, and Jews from the regional communities as well as the Lithuanian capital turned out in abundance. The group performed some songs in Yiddish and the birthday coincided with the issuing of a new CD by the collective which includes qualified musicians from across the generations, from children to the elderly.
Of the ensembles 40 or so members, the youngest is just five and the most senior about to turn 70. The little flame which sprang up in 1971 burns on, and the audience on December 18 included more non-Jews than Jews, including a delegation from the Association of Disabled Poles who attended in wheelchairs.
The entire year has been a celebration of the collective’s birthday and in March Lithuanian prime minister Butkevičius sent warm wishes for their continued success. The ensemble was presented with a large cake with small flames at the mid-December celebration, and Lithuanian parliamentary speaker Pranckietis hailed the longest-surviving musical group in Lithuanian history as well.