Holocaust survivor from Newtown Square plays with Yo-Yo-Ma

Click play to watch the report from Action News' Vernon Odom
October 26, 2013 6:12:50 AM PDT
For Dr. George Horner it was the concert of a lifetime. The 90-year-old holocaust survivor was at Boston's Symphony Hall earlier this week making his orchestral debut with the renowned Yo-Yo Ma.

It was a benefit for a foundation that preserves the work of artists and musicians killed by the Nazis

Dr. Horner came to the U.S. in 1964 after surviving death camps, including Auschwitz and is Buchenwald where the rest of his family perished... and so did a lot of the gifted musicians and composers with which he played.

At his home in Newtown Square, Dr. Horner reflected on the loss of those musicians, saying, "Thinking about the terrific waste of such talents."

At the concert with Ma, they played several pieces including pieces by his fellow inmate Karel Svenk, who did not survive the genocide.

"I wish people would listen to it and people wouldn't forget what happened, because history repeats itself. And one should be ready," Dr. Horner said.

Dr. Horner says it was difficult performing these pieces from 70 years ago, which are laden with such difficult memories. But he knew it would be described as what he called a "noble mission."

Horner explained the magnitude of the loss by saying, "How they robbed the whole world from some genius."

Dr. Horner says he was able to survive because he had music, friends and the power of music to fill in the empty spaces. Yo-Yo Ma called him a huge hero and inspiration - a witness to a slice of history we never want to see again, yet we keep seeing versions of that all over the world.

His story makes sure we never forget.


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