â€œThis collection can be enjoyed by anyone with a little curiosity
about Jewish traditions and an appreciation for fine storytelling. Imaginative, playful, and eminently listenable, this disc is for the child in us all.â€
From the 1999 Bulletin Storytelling Review:
Mark Novak & RenÃ©e Brachfeld -- a dynamic husband-wife performing duo -- draw their material from the warmth and richness of the Jewish tradition. RenÃ©e is a storyteller and juggler, and Mark is a cantor and musician. Since 1996, Mark and RenÃ©e have presented more than 100 Artist-in- Residence weekends at synagogues throughout the United States, enriching Jewish communities with performances and workshops for both adults and families. Their highly acclaimed recording, â€œKing Solomonâ€™s Daughterâ€, was honored with the 1996 Parentsâ€™ Choice Gold Award.
Mark Novak began his musical career as a child, singing with a professional Jewish choir and appearing on Broadway in the musical Oliver. From 1977 to 1986, Mark served as the music director of the Living Stage Theater Company of Arena Stage. Mark performed his original theater pieces at the Smithsonian Instituteâ€™s Discovery Theater, the Wolf Trap Center for the performing Arts, and The National Air and Space Museum. His work was also featured in Shofar Magazine. As a freelance cantor, Mark has served many Washington, D.C. area congregations, including High Holiday services at Congregation Adas Israel, Temple Beth Ami, and Congregation Kol Shalom. â€œThe Mark Novak Bandâ€ which he formed in 1993, is a popular choice for Jewish wedding celebrations throughout the Washington community.
RenÃ©e Brachfeld has been delighting audiences since 1985 with her unique combination of storytelling and juggling skills. RenÃ©e has been a featured storyteller at storytelling festivals around the country. She has taught storytelling workshops for the National Jewish Educators Assembly, CAJE, and BJEs in Washington, New Jersey, Kansas and Florida. RenÃ©e was a recipient of the Janice Goldstein Jewish Community Artists Grant, awarded by the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington to coordinate and direct intergenerational storytelling programs. Her original story, â€œThe Light in the Wall,â€ appears in Peninnah Schramâ€™s book Chosen Tales. Prior to 1993, RenÃ©e made her home in Atlanta, Georgia, where she served as Artist-in-Residence for the Georgia Council for the Arts.