Just in: Auschwitz musician is awarded the German National Prize

The national award was presented today to Anita Lasker-Wallfisch, the cellist who survived Auschwitz with her sister and went on to become a fixture in London musical life.

‘The German National Foundation wishes to underline that, from its perspective, the resisitance to all forms of anti-Semitism must be part of the German identity,’ said its CEO Thomas Mirow

Anita’s 2018 Holocaust Day address to the Bundestag is regarded as a national document.

Anita, who is 93, said: ‘The cello saved me.’

She is an inspiration to us all.

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  • Fantastic news. Only, a bit on the late side. Probably the increasing racial and political extremism everywhere in Europe has spurred-on the foundation.

    ‘The German National Foundation wishes to underline that, from its perspective, the resisitance to all forms of anti-Semitism must be part of the German identity.’ Which harks back to the period of German classicism and Aufklärung, of which Beethoven was the musical icon. It was also the period when Jews were given equal rights and could swarm out from the ghettos and become fully German (until their successes sparked the kind of sentiments we see all around again, and not only against ‘Jews’).

  • Thrilled for her and her wonderful family, particularly my great friend and great cellist Raphael Wallfisch, who is her son and whose performances continue to set the highest standards in the current world of the cello.

  • Yes an inspirational lady. This award is also a testament to how far Germany has travelled since those dark times. I hope the far right will never triumph in Europe, or anywhere else, again. The signs are by no means totally reassuring (something I would never have said until recent years).

  • The shocking thing of our times is that there are so many people in the West, especially in Europe, who have not the slightest awareness of what happened in the last century, or simply wish to ignore it. This second wave of fascism is much worse than the first, if possible at all, because during the 1st wave it was for many people not yet proven what the outcome of such thinking could be. Therefore it is to be feared that the message of such survivors of evil will have little or no effect.

    Protests like in this video are now seen as ‘leftwing’, which is nonsensical, because it is basic common sense and basic human rights:

    viral https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/apr/05/boy-15-simone-italy-video-hailed-as-hero-rome-roma?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other

    The existence of these fascist people is the greatest shame of Europe today, even worse than the banking scandal of 2008.

  • Anita Lasker wrote her autobiography “Inherit the Truth”, originally published in 1996. Anyone interested in her incredible life story should read her book.

    There are many interviews of her online. The longest one I know about was done in 1998 (2 hours and 10 minutes), recorded by the USC Shoah Foundation. It can be seen here:


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