Alberstein Chava

Chava Alberstein - Personal data
Date of birth: 8th December 1947
Place of birth: Szczecin
Occupation: singer, composer, lyricist
Related towns: Kirjat Chaim

Alberstein Chava (b. 8 December 1947, Szczecin) – Israeli singer, composer, and lyricist.

Alberstein was born as Ewa Alberstein to a Jewish family from Szczecin. Her parents were Holocaust survivors; Yiddish was spoken at home. When she was four years old, she and her parents moved to Israel and settled in Kiryat Chaim.

At the age of 17, she gave a performance in a club in Jaffa together with her brother, after which she was invited to perform in the Moadon Hazemer program. She then signed her first record contract. During her military service in 1965 she sang for soldiers; her performances were very popular.

In 1980, she also started to write her own lyrics and compose music. She released over 60 albums with songs in Yiddish, Hebrew, Arabic, and English. She is described as the most important folk singer in Israel. Her Yiddish recordings are very popular all over the world. Thanks to her songs, the world became acquainted with lyrics written by Binem Heller, Anna Margolin, and Itzik Manger, among others. For her contributions to the research and promotion of Jewish folklore, she was honoured by the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research (Yidisher Visnshaftlekher Institut) in New York. She was also presented with the Kinor David (Hebrew: David’s Harp) Israeli music award.

Selected albums:

  • Chava vehaGitara (1978)
  • MiShirei Eretz Ahavati (1990)
  • The Well (1998) with The Klezmatics
  • Chava Alberstein  Yiddish Songs (1999)
  • Chava zingt Yiddish (1989)
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