Ithaca, NY–A presentation focusing on Holocaust survivors will take place at Ithaca College on Monday, April 24. Ken Shuldman will discuss his book, “Jazz Survivor: The Story of Louis Bannet, Horn Player of Auschwitz,” and Rich Newberg will introduce and screen “Lost Childhood: The Story of the Birkenau Boys,” a documentary he produced. Free and open to the public, the event will begin at 8:00 p.m. in Textor 101.

“Jazz Survivor” tells the story of trumpeter Louis Bannet. Born in the poor Jewish quarter of Rotterdam in 1911, Bannet discovered early in life that music would be the key to his economic survival, but he had no idea it would one day save his life. Touted as the Dutch Louis Armstrong, Bannet went into hiding when the German army occupied the Netherlands. However, he was eventually captured and sent to Auschwitz-Birkenau, where his skill as a musician impressed Josef Mengele, the infamous death-camp physician known as the “Angel of Death.” Not only did Bannet become Mengele’s personal band leader, he was also a key player in the Auschwitz Orchestra. After the camp was liberated in 1945, Bannet resumed his music career.

“Lost Childhood” documents the experiences of 89 Jewish boys in Auschwitz-Birkenau who Josef Mengele arbitrarily chose to spare while sending the boys’ families to the gas chambers. Fifty years after being liberated, the surviving boys returned to the site of the former death camp to face the horrors of their past and to honor their families. Consisting of interviews, artwork, and wartime footage as well as emotional visits to barracks, mass graves, and museums, this powerful documentary has won numerous honors, including the U.S. International Film and Video Festival’s Gold Camera Award.

Shuldman is a senior partner and creative director for the New York office of Ogilvy & Mather. His work has garnered several honors, including a Clio, a One Show Award, an Andy, and a Grand Obie. He has also created pro bono advertising campaigns for the Museum of Jewish Heritage/A Living Memorial to the Holocaust in New York City and the Anti-Defamation League. Shuldman’s son, Harry, is a student in the College’s Roy H. Park School of Communications. Newberg’s son, David, is also studying in the Park School. Newberg is the senior correspondent for WIVB-TV in Buffalo. His documentary work has been honored with nine New York Emmy Awards, five national CINE Golden Eagle Awards, and three Edward R. Murrow Regional Awards. A lifetime honorary member of the Holocaust Resource Center of Buffalo, Newberg graduated from the communications school in 1969 with a bachelor’s degree in television-radio.

Sponsored by Hillel, the presentation is made possible by a special programming grant from the Office of the President. For more information contact Michael Faber, Jewish chaplain, at (607) 274-3323 or faber@ithaca.edu.