LI Woman Dec. 2014
fyi by Anne Wilkinson Blachley

Long Island Woman, December 2014, p. 6

Chanukah: Hannah's Holiday
Chanukah has been referred to as "the women's
holiday" because of the legend of Hannah, who
rebelled against oppresive decrees against Jews
and ignited the Maccabean revolt. Focusing on
the struggle against religious oppression and on
women being treated as property with no voice,
Hannah, the opera, has its U.S. premier[e] on Long
Island. The opera was composed by Long Islander
Leonard Lehrman, who co-wrote the libretto with
Long Island writer Orel Odinov Protopopescu.
Lehrman co-founded the Metropolitan
Philharmonic Chorus (featured in the production)
with his wife Helene Williams, the Bronx Opera
Company co-founder who performs in Hannah.
(Both Lehrman and Williams had contracts with
the Metropolitan Opera.) The anti-war, feminist
work is based on the Bible, psalms, Sappho and
Philodemus, and Susan Brownmiller's feminist
research. You can see it Tuesday, December 9,
8pm, at the Community Presbyterian Church,
12 Nottingham Rd., Malverne, and Tuesday,
December 23, 7pm at the Hebrew Union College-
Jewish Institute of Religion, 1 West 4th St., New
York. Suggested donation $25. For details, email
Helene Williams at or call