On tour with Buffalo Philharmonic, orchestra cellist to play in tribute to family members at Auschwitz

Posted on: March 6, 2018

“In mid-March, when the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra tours Poland, it will be a time of celebration and, with luck, triumph,” writes Mary Kunz Goldman in last Tuesday’s (2/27) Buffalo News (NY). “Cellist Robert Hausmann, though, will be making a poignant side trip. His mother, Britta, had been a little girl in Germany when Hitler came to power…. The family was Jewish, and Britta’s parents sheltered her from the terrible news of the growing Nazi threat. When they sailed to America on the Ile de France, Britta, then 9, saw it only as a happy event…. Her grandmother, though the family begged her to join them, chose to stay put…. [She] was deported July 21, 1942, and sent to Theresienstadt. She died May 15, 1944, in the gas chambers of Auschwitz. That led to Hausmann’s resolve to visit Auschwitz when the BPO went to Poland. He wanted to play for all the family members his family lost to the Holocaust—11, by one account, on his father’s side.… Above all, Robert Hausmann wanted to play for his great-grandmother. She will be most on his mind when, at Auschwitz, he plays the Kaddish, the ancient Jewish prayer of mourning.”

Posted March 6, 2018