Pepi Litman (1874-1930) was a charismatic cross-dressing Yiddish singer who spent her life busting through borders between genders, nations, languages, and people. She left us a few 78 RPM recordings and photos, inspiring LGBTQQ folks to embrace her as a “transcestor.” But Litman’s rapid-fire delivery, broad accent, and bawdy jokes mean that most of her songs are untranslated—until now.
The Pepi Litman Project aims to make Pepi’s songs accessible to a new generation. Jeanette Lewicki of Oakland will work with international Yiddishists, including Yiddish educator Eliezer Niborski, to translate Pepi Litman’s songs, along with supporting material from the Broderzinger movement. The initial goal is Yiddish-English translation of Pepi Litman songs, to share with performers, researchers, and new audiences around the world.
If this project moves you, you can make a tax-deductible donation here. Every penny helps!