Dr. Dietmar Woidke

Dear concert enthusiasts,
dear visitors,

and is always opened here. As great as the joy is again this year – we cannot celebrate the great Jewish musician and Jewish life in our country without thinking of the horrific massacre on October 7.

This year, young people from both countries came together here in Brandenburg for the German-Israeli youth exchange. As we do every year, we brought Israel Week to the schools. And as a festive highlight, we celebrated 75 years of Israel in the state parliament. But then Israel experienced the most devastating anti-Semitic attack since the Holocaust. It changed everything.

The fact that the Louis Lewandowski Festival is still taking place is a sign of hope and strength for me. I have all my respect for that. Louis Lewandowski did not see the differences between traditional synagogue music and secular music as a dividing line. He brought the two together and thus made a great gift to both the religious and the musical world.

In this tradition, this year’s Louis Lewandowski Festival celebrates the entire spectrum of Israel’s musical cultures from the Orient and the Occident. It is a sign that diversity and tolerance enrich us all. I sincerely hope that, in the spirit of Louis Lewandowski, it is not the differences but the connections between people that win out and that peaceful coexistence becomes possible.

Dr. Dietmar Woidke
Ministerpräsident des Landes Brandenburg