Judy Frankel

Judy Frankel: Scalerica de Oro

Judy Frankel, acclaimed singer of Sephardic songs, died on 20th March 2008 after a long battle with cancer. The world has lost a beautiful voice and an even more beautiful soul.

She had dedicated much of her life to the collection and preservation of songs from the Sephardic tradition, travelling all over the world to learn the songs firsthand. Judy was punctilious in pronouncing the Ladino (Judeo-Spanish) exactly as it had been transmitted to her, and in crediting the person from whom she had learned the song.

As well as concerts, Judy recorded four CDs of Ladino songs, published a Sephardic songbook, lectured, and gave workshops.

Her voice was ravishing: pure and clear; passionate and tender. There was an honesty to her singing: she never allowed her voice or her intricate guitar accompaniment to overpower the song.

On a personal note: although I never met Judy, her music has sustained me through some very dark times over the past few years. She was so kind in responding to my emails, and encouraging me in my search for my Jewish roots and identity. I will always be glad I plucked up the courage to contact her. I will always treasure her replies.

Durme, durme, hermoza donzella, ke tu alma repoze en Gan Eden.

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