Performed by star clainettist Giora Feidman and the Arditti String Quartett, Betty Oliver's new music for Paul Wegener's famous silent movie „THE GOLEM“ made a spectacular world premier in 1998 at the Konzerthaus Wien and became an internationally successful Film Concert. Likewise, the chamber music adaptation for string quartett or orchestra is often performed on worldwide concert stages.

The film is located in a medieval Prague in the Ghetto and at the Emperor's court. It tells the story of Rabbi Löw, who uses his magical sciences to create from a lump of clay the GOLEM, who's superhuman forces save the Jewish communit from expulsion, but  also causes their foreboding ruin, when he becomes an uncontrollable instrument of destruction.

The film brings together heterogenous worlds, different style elements, various levels of ambiance and emotion: the medieval legend and the technical means of the early 20th century, expressionistic settings and impressionistic lighting effects, the Jewish Ghetto and the renaissance world of the emperor's court, human hubris and deep belief, die childlike innocence and the rage of the artificial being.

The music assigns individual musical themes to the different characters and levels of action, the different worlds are marked by a different musical style. All is increasingly interwoven following the dramatic development of the action.
The main themes of the music are a warm and tender Nigun, which is linked to the "secret of life", the ancient prayer ‚Kol Nidrei’ which serves as foreboding theme of the Rabbi in the moment of undertaking the sacrosanct creation of life, und finally the folk dances and klezmer melodies of the dynamic street scenes in the ghetto..
Integrated in this essence of the composition and the film are the trifling and frivolous motifs assigned to the emperor's court and the excessively thrilling moments of the apocalyptic blaze and the frenzy of the GOLEM.

The Golem-Suite No.1 and the Suite "Zekhs Yiddishe Lider und Tantz" are adaptations of the film music and contain main themes.
Both are meant to stand without the film, but are an interpretative reference to the action of the old legend.

" ... the evening's magic derives from teh music.
Betty Olivero thought out a truly exciting music for the expressionistic silent movie classic
Without ebing unseemly overstated, the music retells the Jewish legend, tempts, abducts, captures and makes
the mystic sound..."

" ... Traditional Jewish folklore and sacral music are smoothly connected to teh musical forms of the Renaissance.
Appealing effects are produced with with vast intervals and beautifully counterpointing lines.
It's a music of often dark timbres and an exotically irisdiscent poetry.“

„ Betty Olivero bridges the gap between old and new, pictures and sound...
The classical-modern string quartett paints the color sounds of this tinted version with sharply whirring
or gloomy lasting sounds:
the blue of the night, the blazing red or the cooly pale yellow.
Then, it hatchels dissonantly, as if whipped by phases of clusters - up the stairs, down the stairs
through the narrow angled and canted
contructions ...
When the Freilach feeling breaks out in the Ghetto alleys, the clarinet  is allowed to jubilate
and the string quartett becomes a grooving near-east rhythm group...

YOUTUBE:  "Zeks Yidishe Lider un Tantz" 
Suite f. Solo clarinet & String Quartett

film concert: