In this photo taken March 4, 2014, Berlin, Germany, Edgar Krasa, right, a 93-year-old survivor of Nazi concentration camps meets with W. Michael Blumenthal, former U.S. Treasury Secretary who now heads the Jewish Museum in the German capital. The two were attending a performance of a mass to commemorate the victims of Nazi terror at the Terezin concentration camp. Edgar Krasa took part in one of the ennobling acts of the Holocaust. He didn’t take up arms in a ghetto insurrection, or fight in the
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Edgar Krasa took part in one of the ennobling acts of the Holocaust.Over the next four years, thousands of its artists, writers, musicians and professionals would be transported from the Prague area to the fortress-turned-concentration camp where Krasa was sent that day: Terezin.Terezin was never an extermination camp, although some 35,000 of the 140,000 prisoners perished there.Terezin also proved a propaganda coup for the Nazis, who used it to show the world that they were treating Jews humanely.The reality of Terezin could not be more different.A week after Krasa's arrival, a young Prague musician, Rafael Schachter, turned up at Terezin -- and the two shared an attic room.The Terezin Orchestra and a jazz group called the Ghetto Swingers were formed.Krasa, who once crooned in a barber shop quartet, sang in all 16 performances of the Requiem at Terezin.Sitting in the front row, holding his wife's hand, was Krasa, gray-haired, mentally alert, always ready with a joke.Seventy years after he first sang the Requiem at Terezin, the somber opening measures of Verdi's masterwork sound in a performance paying tribute to Schachter, his fellow musicians and the power of art over evil.
Edgar Krasa took part in one of the ennobling acts of the Holocaust.
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