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Yiddish Book Center produces feature-length documentary film about Yiddish writer Avrom Sutzkever about Yiddish writer Avrom Sutzkever

AMHERST Released in 2021, “Ver Vet Blaybn?” (Who Will Remain?), a documentary that follows one woman’s journey to understand her grandfather, Yiddish poet Avrom Sutzkever, is on the 2021–2022 film festival circuit, with screenings booked at upcoming festivals around the globe. Through Nov. 21 there will be streaming access through the 33rd annual Boston Jewish Film Festival (tickets available at: https://bit.ly/VVBBJFF ).

“Ver Vet Blaybn?” (Who Will Remain?) tells the story of Hadas Kalderon, Sutzkever’s granddaughter, as she attempts to better understand her grandfather. Kalderon, an Israeli actress, travels to Lithuania, using her grandfather’s diary to trace his early life in Vilna and his survival of the Holocaust. Sutzkever (1913–2010) was an acclaimed Yiddish poet—described by the New York Times as the “greatest poet of the Holocaust”—whose verse drew on his youth in Siberia and Vilna, his spiritual and material resistance during World War II, and his postwar life in Israel. Kalderon, whose native language is Hebrew, must rely on translation of her grandfather’s work and is nevertheless determined to connect with what remains of the poet’s bygone world and accept the personal responsibility of preserving her grandfather’s literary legacy. 

Woven into the documentary are family home videos, newly recorded interviews, and archival recordings, including Sutzkever’s testimony at the Nuremberg trials. 

The film was produced by the Yiddish Book Center’s Wexler Oral History Project. The documentary’s producer and co-director, Christa Whitney, is the director of the Yiddish Book Center’s Wexler Oral History Project, a growing collection of more than 1,000 in-depth video interviews about Yiddish language and culture with people of all ages and backgrounds. The film’s editor and co-director, Emily Felder, is a documentary filmmaker who has worked as the premier technical assistant for the Wexler Oral History Project.

To learn more about the film and to see upcoming screenings as they are added, visit https://www.yiddishbookcenter.org/who-will-remain

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