October 15, 2021
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Holocaust piano now in Cotati

  • The Rafael Trio sits around the now famous piano

March 8, 2019

The world-renowned Raphael Trio will present a concert of Mendelssohn trios at Congregation Ner Shalom, 85 La Plaza, Cotati, at 7:30 p.m. Sat., March 30. The concert is a benefit for the congregation.

The Trio will play two Mendelssohn trios, both well known and loved, brilliant and virtuosic:  the Trio #1 in D Minor and #2 in C Minor.

This is the Raphael Trio’s second benefit concert for Ner Shalom, celebrating Ner Shalom’s stewardship of a Steinway baby grand piano entrusted to Ner Shalom by David Salm, brother of the Raphael Trio’s cellist, Susan Salm. The instrument belonged to their mother Erna, a concert pianist in Germany. When the Nazis came to power, Erna Salm shipped her pianos to safety. 

Re-united with her beloved baby grand, Erna established monthly “House Concerts” in Chicago, a tradition from her life in Europe that she successfully brought to the American public.  

One of the Salm children, Susan, became a concert cellist, touring internationally with her mother, performing as a soloist and chamber musician in the US and overseas. During her studies at the Juilliard School in NY she and her colleagues formed the Raphael Trio. 

Irwin Keller, spiritual leader of Congregation Ner Shalom, said, “Ner Shalom is proud to be the home of Erna Salm’s piano and also the Sonoma County home of the Raphael Trio. It is also of note that the Trio is playing Mendelssohn. Felix Mendelssohn’s grandfather, Moses Mendelssohn, was a very important figure in European Jewish history – his work ultimately birthed the progressive denominations of Judaism. The connections between the music, the players, the instruments and history will be tied very tight that night.”

Tickets are $25; VIP tickets are $40, and sponsorships are $150. Others may be purchased online at or by calling Ner Shalom at (707) 664-8622.