Monday, 24 February 2014
Oldest Holocaust survivor, Alice Herz-Sommer, dies at 110
The oldest known survivor of the Nazi Holocaust, Alice Herz-Sommer, has died in London at the age of 110.
Born into a Jewish family in Prague in 1903, Ms Herz-Sommer spent two years in a Nazi concentration camp in Terezin.
She was an accomplished pianist and music teacher and taught at the Jerusalem Conservatory until 1986, when she moved to London.
A film about her life has been nominated for best short documentary at next month's Academy Awards.
"We all came to believe that she would just never die," said Frederic Bohbot, producer of the documentary, The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life.
Ms Herz-Sommer is said to have continued playing the works of Schubert and Beethoven until her final days.
On the film's website, she says: "I am Jewish, but Beethoven is my religion. I am no longer myself. The body cannot resist as it did in the past.
"I think I am in my last days but it does not really matter because I have had such a beautiful life.
"And life is beautiful, love is beautiful, nature and music are beautiful. Everything we experience is a gift, a present we should cherish and pass on to those we love."
What an amazing life this Lady lead. From living through unimaginable horror and suffering to playing her music until the end. How anyone came out of those camps sane and with the strength to start again and live a great life is awe inspiring. A born fighter and survivor. Good always overcomes evil, but what a price so many have paid.