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One Holocaust Survivor’s Wonderful Thrill of Life

From: Barry Vogel
Series: Radio Curious
Length: 29:02

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Radio Curious takes you to France as it was in 1932 where Maya Schwartz was born to an immigrant family. 1939 to 1945 her family was torn apart by the Nazis. California 2012 – We interview Maya Finkel Schawartz a holocaust survivor who relies on optimism and shares her story and songs.

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There are two kinds of Holocaust survivors:  Those who didn’t die yet could no longer experience pleasure and those who yearned to feel alive and were able to create anew.

In this edition of Radio Curious we visit with Maya Finkel Schwartz, born in France in 1932 to Jewish parents from Poland.  After being separated from her father at the beginning of World War Two, her mother had the foresight to introduce then seven year old Maya to as many social workers and nuns as her mother could locate.  It was these people who Maya credits with saving her life as they sheltered her in barns and convents.  She never saw her parents after the war.  As an older teen-ager she arrived in Los Angeles, California where she still lives after a decades long career teaching high-school math, and later as a singer, as we shall hear.

The story of Maya Finkel Schwartz is one of 52 childhood accounts of the horrors perpetrated by Nazi Germany documented in the book “How We Survived:  52 Personal Stories by Child Survivors of the Holocaust.”  More information about this book is available at childsurvivorsla.org.

Maya Finkel Schwartz visited the studios of Radio Curious on April 20, 2012.  Maya shared her story and a song, accompanied by her son Michael Charnas.

Her theme is the “joy of life,” which is where we began our conversation.

The story of Maya Finkel Schwartz is found in the book she recommends.  She wrote one of 52 childhood accounts of the horrors perpetrated by Nazi Germany documented in the book “How We Survived:  52 Personal Stories by Child Survivors of the Holocaust.” 

Piece Description

There are two kinds of Holocaust survivors:  Those who didn’t die yet could no longer experience pleasure and those who yearned to feel alive and were able to create anew.

In this edition of Radio Curious we visit with Maya Finkel Schwartz, born in France in 1932 to Jewish parents from Poland.  After being separated from her father at the beginning of World War Two, her mother had the foresight to introduce then seven year old Maya to as many social workers and nuns as her mother could locate.  It was these people who Maya credits with saving her life as they sheltered her in barns and convents.  She never saw her parents after the war.  As an older teen-ager she arrived in Los Angeles, California where she still lives after a decades long career teaching high-school math, and later as a singer, as we shall hear.

The story of Maya Finkel Schwartz is one of 52 childhood accounts of the horrors perpetrated by Nazi Germany documented in the book “How We Survived:  52 Personal Stories by Child Survivors of the Holocaust.”  More information about this book is available at childsurvivorsla.org.

Maya Finkel Schwartz visited the studios of Radio Curious on April 20, 2012.  Maya shared her story and a song, accompanied by her son Michael Charnas.

Her theme is the “joy of life,” which is where we began our conversation.

The story of Maya Finkel Schwartz is found in the book she recommends.  She wrote one of 52 childhood accounts of the horrors perpetrated by Nazi Germany documented in the book “How We Survived:  52 Personal Stories by Child Survivors of the Holocaust.” 

Musical Works

Title Artist Album Label Year Length
The Lost Cowboy Peter Elman Durango Saloon. Acorn Music :30

Related Website

www.radiocurious.org