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QY4 y o e ct. ita
friends: "I love
when I can
impart a little
let them know
"I change into four different cos-
tumes in a heartbeat," he says. "My
theatrical background helps me there.
It's very visual, very participatory.
"I have full Elvis regalia with the
wig and the glasses and everything. I
do a song about eating latkes, but I do
it as Elvis. The parents get a kick out
of that. I take the cape off and fling it
out to some bubbie in the audience
who's laughing. It's fun."
Zelonky, the father of three chil-
dren, ages 4, 6 and 8, does not neglect
the grown-ups at his shows.
"When I go someplace with my
kids, I want to be entertained, too," he
says. "Parents don't want to be bored
for an hour."
In addition to children's music,
Zelonky also does a set of Yiddish
songs geared to an adult audience. It's
a show he often does for senior citi-
Although Robbo did not grow up
speaking Yiddish (he jokingly boasts,
"I do know what the songs mean"),
Jewish music was a large part of
Growing up in Des Plaines, Ill., he
participated in a Jewish youth choir
for six years.
"I've always loved Jewish music. I
love being Jewish," he says, "and a lot
of my love for being Jewish comes
from the music.
"There's just something about the
sound. Whenever I hear good Jewish
music, it makes me happy. Jewish
music saved my life — in every single
way. It made my career. It's all about
Jewish music for me."
As far as Robbo's plans for the
future, he's "content to keep rolling
along and plant a few good seeds," he
"Just be a human being. Be a
mentsh. Plant a few mentshlekeit seeds
and a little happiness." ❑
Robbo performs 3 p.m. Sunday,
Jan. 19, for children and their
families and 7 p.m. later that day
in a Yiddish concert for adults.
Both concerts take place at the
Jewish Community Center in
West Bloomfield. Tickets are $5
for JCC members for each con-
cert and $8 for nonmembers.
Congregation Beth Ahm mem-
bers receive the member rate for
the 7 p.m. performance. For
information and tickets, call
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