Sara Levy’s Salon

Sara Levy, née Itzig (1761–1854) was a salonnière, skilled performing musician, and active participant in enlightened Prussian Jewish society. She played a powerful role in shaping the dynamic cultural world of late 18th- and early 19th-century Berlin. A patron and collector of music, she was a catalyst for the “Bach revival” of the early 19th century, which was led by her great-nephew Felix Mendelssohn. Sara Levy’s World: Gender, Judaism, and the Bach Tradition in Enlightenment Berlin, a new book edited by Rebecca Cypess and Nancy Sinkoff, represents the first scholarly exploration of the cultural, political, and aesthetic contexts that shaped Levy’s world. The book comes with a CD of music, “In Sara Levy’s Salon.”