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Meir Noy

NOY, MEIR (1922–1998), Israeli musician, composer, and song collector. Born in Kolomea, Galicia, Noy received a Jewish and musical education. He studied violin and engineering. During World War II he escaped his town's ghetto and joined the Red Army, where he served as a musician and directed a musical ensemble. After the war he emigrated to Israel. On his way, he was interned in a Cyprus British Mandatory camp where he decided to collect Yiddish songs to commemorate the lost Yiddish musical folklore. In Israel, he first joined the army music entertainment troupe, the Tshisbatron, as an accordionist. He also composed his first Hebrew songs, such as "Ba-Derekh le-Eilat" (1949) and "Ha-Pegishah" (1949), for this troupe, and later composed for other troupes. Other popular songs he composed are "Ha-Zekankan" (1956) and "Al Roshha-Djindji Bo'er ha-Kova" (1957). After his army service, he taught music in a school in Tel Aviv for 30 years. From 1949 until his last day, he collected Yiddish and Hebrew songs from written and oral sources, which he transcribed and catalogued. His collection includes about 100,000 Hebrew songs and 30,000 Yiddish songs. This collection is one of the most complete collections of this sort and contains unique and accurate information about the creation and continuity of Israeli popular song. The collection was donated with the assistance of the Wachs family to the Music Department of the Jewish National and University Library in Jerusalem. The collection was recatalogued and is open to the public and serves scholars from all over the world. Meir Noy also published two books of songs from his collection, Otiyyot ha-Alef Bet and Ma'ayaneiha-Zemer, in which he compares Yiddish and Hebrew songs with the same melody.

Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2007 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.