Fonds 1091 - Ezekiel Malin Fonds

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Ezekiel Malin Fonds

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  • Textual record

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Ezekiel Malen Fonds

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  • Source of title proper: Title based on the subject of the fonds.

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CA JPL-A 1091

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  • [195-? - 197-?] (Creation)
    Malin, Ezekiel, 1887-1977

Physical description area

Physical description

Contains 0.36m of textual records and 46 sound recordings.

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Name of creator


Biographical history

Ezekiel Malin (August 27, 1887-October 5, 1977) was a musician and composer based in Montreal. In his youth, Malin sang in the choir of the great Chazzan, Zevulon Kwartin. In 1906, Malin emigrated to Canada, where he married Riva/Rivka Letovsky on November 14, 1909. The couple moved to Montreal soon afterwards, where they raised four children, and where Malin pursued a 45-year career in the wholesale fruit and vegetable business. Throughout their lives, Ezekiel and Riva Malin were both heavily involved in Jewish philanthropic organizations such as the Canadian Friends of Hebrew University—through sales of his records, Malin raised thousands for Hebrew University. The couple resided in Montreal until Malin’s death in 1977.

Malin possessed a lifelong interest in music and music composition; melodies constantly “wove themselves” in his mind. As a boy, he had been advised by Chazzan Kwartin to pursue a music education, but Malin was unable to do so at the time. After he retired in 1953, Malin finally delved into the study of music. He composed numerous melodies for poetry, especially Yiddish and Hebrew children’s poetry. Poets whose work he adapted included Ida Massey, H. Leivick, J. I. Segal, Avrom Reisen, Moshe Shtoker Payok, among others.
Despite his late start, Malin achieved numerous accolades for his musical compositions. He published multiple books and records, beginning with Music in 1958. His book of children’s songs, Children’s Songs for the Home and School (published in 1968), was used for music education in Jewish schools in Europe, Australia, Mexico, and South America. In 1962, Malin was recognized in the radio broadcast, Voice of Israel. He was honored by the Jewish Writers Association of Montreal in 1963.

In the foreword to his first book, Malin wrote that he considered himself a young person in music, because he had only just begun to pursue music and because struggled with the basics of formal notation. Though he had only achieved the level of education sufficient to transcribe the melodies that already sprang into his head, he wrote: this was enough for him.

Custodial history

Scope and content

The fonds contains records pertaining to the life of Ezekiel Malin. It consists largely of his musical output, including draft and published manuscripts of Yiddish and Hebrew sheet music, as well as musical recordings of his compositions and personal papers.

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Immediate source of acquisition


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  • English
  • Hebrew
  • Yiddish

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    This description was created by Archival Assistant Molly Newman in January 2024.

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