Kantikas Di Mi Nona, in Flory's words:
"As my first CD, Kantikas Di Mi Nona relives the happy memories of my family in Bosnia through songs that my Nona, a Sephardic folksinger, taught me. Her gift of these songs was the most valuable possession I brought with me from Europe."
Kantikas Di Mi Nona is Disc 1 of Flory's 4 Disc Set.
Born in Sarajevo, Flory spent her childhood summers in the Bosnian village of Vlasenica within the rich Sephardic tradition of her musical Altaras family. Tragically, the Sephardim of Sarajevo and its surrounding communities were nearly obliterated during World War II. During most of the war Flory was interned on the island of Korchula on the Dalmatian Coast. She and her parents finally escaped to Italy where she met and soon married Harry Jagoda, then in the U.S. military. Flory arrived in America as a war bride in 1946.
Now in her 80’s Flory has stated that her latest CD, Arvoliko: The Little Tree, will be her final recording. The tree, located in Bosnia, is said to be the only marker of the mass grave of 42 massacred members of the Altaras family. She refers to her four recordings as representing the four musical stages of her life.
Ladino is in serious danger of extinction but it is experiencing a minor revival among Sephardic communities, especially in music. As the leader of this revival, Flory has been labeled "The Keeper of the Flame".
In 2002 she received a Lifetime Honor by the National Heritage Fellowship and the National Endowment for the Arts for her efforts in passing on the tradition of Ladino music.