"This is the soundtrack to a show my wife and I saw in St. Paul on Christmas Eve 2011. The show, The Soul of Gershwin, was absolutely fabulous, and written by the piano player. The band was only about 20 feet to my left, about a 10 piece: violin, horns, piano, drums... We go to shows all the time and I can't remember a better one! I was on fire. I literally sang my way out of the theater. The CD is not exactly the same people but it's equally great. I highly recommend it."
"...close the book and listen—to Herbie Hancock’s Grammy-winning “Gershwin’s World,” to Marcus Roberts’s distinctly personal “Rhapsody” on “Portraits in Blue” (with a band that mixes jazz musicians and the Orchestra of St. Luke’s), or, for that matter, to the recent “Gershwin the Klezmer”—and he is everywhere."
Claudia Roth Pierpont, writing in The New Yorker Magazine, January 2, 2005
"wall-to-wall with drop-dead gorgeous tunes...Klezmerica is a wonder, whether the players are tearing through a rip-snorting klezmer number, a Gershwin torch song, or one of Vass' spunky, informed original melodies...Gershwin The Klezmer could run as long as there are people hungry for fascinating rhythm." Dominic Papatola, Theater Critic for the St. Paul Pioneer Press.
Later, in his annual roundup of the Twin Cities 1999 theater season, rating Gershwin The Klezmer one of the year's Top Ten performances (the only original and the only Minnesota-created piece so designated): "Klezmerica, one actor and three singers created pure stage magic...a genuinely thrilling evening of music." Dominic Papatola.
"...the perfect show for baby boomers and their parents...the Klezmerica evokes memories of steamy kitchens and home cooking. And the violin mastery of Yuri Merzhevsky hits the spot reserved for joy and sorrow, one that is universally understood." Los Angeles Times.
"Gershwin Klezmer is a treat...an electrifying performance!" Minneapolis Star Tribune.
"an imaginatively conceived and finely executed musical creation." American Jewish World.
"Works on so many levels one might have to see it twice...instructive, fascinating, and entertaining." Miami Herald.
"Gershwin The Klezmer features eight supremely gifted artists [giving] virtuoso performances. Twin Citians' enthusiastic response to this production indicates the show should travel successfully My wish for audiences everywhere is that the present company can travel along with the revue to which they contribute so much." Back Stage.
"...Then I understood that the intersecting rhythms of George Gershwin were Bluish and Jewish. Whether it was Anatevka or Catfish Row, the depressed feelings of blacks or oppressed feelings of Jews, these were intersecting rhythms, brilliantly expressed in this unique show. Rarely have I attended a performance that evoked such an empathetic response; people smiled, swayed to the rhythms, wept--all in visible, emotional response to the music...an extraordinary musical revue...It is not to be missed. 'S'Wonderful, 'S'marvelous!" Rabbi Bernard S. Raskas, in a commentary written for the American Jewish World.
"Gershwin and Klezmer. Together they produce sheer heaven. A cornucopia of musical delights." The Reverend Christopher Russell, Theater Critic for the St. Cloud Times.
"While bringing the show back well within a year was a bit risky on our part, it proved totally justified by the overwhelming response of our audiences and the well-deserved standing ovations at every performance. Matter of fact, we clocked the Sunday afternoon show's curtain call at 6― minutes! A record by anyone's standards. And a testament to the gorgeous performance." Keith Evans, producer Show Of The Month, Los Angeles, California.
"What a fantastic show "Gershwin The Klezmer" was. It far exceeded my wildest expectations in scope and entertainment." Seville Pourush, Program Director, Jewish Community Center of Greater Los Angeles.
"jazzy, rousing, soulful..." Christine Dolen, Miami Herald.
"the best theatrical revue to play South Florida in years..." Bill Hirschman, Broward Sun-Sentinel
"all about the music… yes, ‘s wonderful…" Robert Crew, Toronto Star.
"works on so many levels one might have to see it twice..." Howard Cohen, Miami Herald.