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Ursula Mamlok (b2/01/1923)

Ursula Mamlok lived until the age of sixteen in her native Berlin, where she began composing as a child. She studied with Professor Gustav Ernest and Emily Weissgerber. In interviews she has recalled her family’s mainstream synagogue affiliation and Jewish holy day observances, and she also remembers anti-Semitic slurs against her as a child even prior to the Nazi era. When, during the early years of the National Socialist regime, Jews were excluded from the Hausmusik programs in public schools, her father organised private musicales in their home, for which she wrote music. Following the infamous orchestrated nationwide pogrom in 1938 known as Kristallnacht, the family left Germany for Ecuador—for the American immigration quotas precluded their entry into the United States by that time (1939). But in Ecuador, feeling alienated, her parents became disaffected from Judaism and abandoned Jewish observances and celebrations altogether. “We were angry,” she has recalled. “Suddenly all of our family members were in concentration camps or were being murdered, and somehow we didn’t feel like celebrating anything.”




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