Your email is not valid
Recipient's email is not valid
Submit Close

Your email has been sent.

Click here to send another


Sigi on the Accordion

Shivah Stars

Print Email
Alexis Weissenberg.(Brownie Harris/NYT)

Each week, we select the most interesting Jewish obituary. This week, it’s that of Alexis Weissenberg, who died Sunday in Switzerland at 82. Before living in Switzerland, he lived in France, New York, pre-war Palestine, Turkey, and Bulgaria, where he was born. He and his mother tried to escape into Turkey in 1941, but instead were put in a concentration camp; they were allowed out because a German officer enjoyed the way “Sigi” performed Schubert on an accordion. “Weissenberg’s cool yet blazing approach divided reviewers,” the obituary notes. “Where some heard impeccable technique, others heard soulless efficiency. Where some embraced the drama of his interpretations, others condemned them for aggressiveness.” You be the judge:

Alexis Weissenberg, Pianist of Fire and Ice, Dies at 82 [NYT]

Print Email

Daily rate: $2
Monthly rate: $18
Yearly rate: $180

Tablet is committed to bringing you the best, smartest, most enlightening and entertaining reporting and writing on Jewish life, all free of charge. We take pride in our community of readers, and are thrilled that you choose to engage with us in a way that is both thoughtful and thought-provoking. But the Internet, for all of its wonders, poses challenges to civilized and constructive discussion, allowing vocal—and, often, anonymous—minorities to drag it down with invective (and worse). Starting today, then, we are asking people who'd like to post comments on the site to pay a nominal fee—less a paywall than a gesture of your own commitment to the cause of great conversation. All proceeds go to helping us bring you the ambitious journalism that brought you here in the first place.

Readers can still interact with us free of charge via Facebook, Twitter, and our other social media channels, or write to us at Each week, we’ll select the best letters and publish them in a new letters to the editor feature on the Scroll.

We hope this new largely symbolic measure will help us create a more pleasant and cultivated environment for all of our readers, and, as always, we thank you deeply for your support.

If I recall, at one point he had to support himself designing greetings cards, an anecdote I’m surprised didn’t make it into the NYTimes obit. The Beethoven concertos with Von Karajan, who loved his playing, were until recently still available on EMI.

Also great, with accompanying video.


Your comment may be no longer than 2,000 characters, approximately 400 words. HTML tags are not permitted, nor are more than two URLs per comment. We reserve the right to delete inappropriate comments.

Thank You!

Thank you for subscribing to the Tablet Magazine Daily Digest.
Please tell us about you.

Sigi on the Accordion

Shivah Stars

More on Tablet:

A Tale of Three Twitter Feeds: Hamas Tweets in Arabic, English, and Hebrew

By Aaron Magid — Analysis of the social-media messaging of Hamas’ military wing reveals distinct voices for the West, the Arab Middle East, and Israel