Proposal for Ladino—an hour-long audio feature/composition

Ladino, also called Judeo-Spanish, is the language of Spanish Jews, much as Yiddish is the language of Eastern European Jews. Sounding like an old Spanish, Ladino is thus different from the Spanish spoken today by Jews in, say, Argentina and Mexico. Indeed, Ladino is reportedly closer in sound to the language of Christopher Columbus than any other Spanish heard today. What I would like to do is an hour-long audio feature about this language in which I would ask Ladino-speakers living in America to explain in their own (English) words the differences between their language and the Spanish spoken here and, by extension, the importance of Ladino. I may also record excerpts on these issues. Since I have previously done compositions of and about the sound of unique sources (the language of prayer, the Hebrew of the Diaspora, New York City, baseball), it would seem appropriate to conclude the feature with a multitrack composition that would for its acoustic material draw upon phrases used earlier in the feature and other characteristically Ladino articulations. I have been promised the assistance of Ladino-speaking relatives of mine, in addition to the relatives of Sephardic colleagues. Once I begin the project, I expect to contact the officials of synagogues with Ladino-speaking congregations around the U.S.. For budget, I would estimate $18,000, which would include $8,000 for me as the producer-interviewer-announcer (working quarter-time for an entire year), $3,000 for assisting and expert personnel, $2,500 for travel to recording sites within the U.S., $500 for audiotape (including multitrack), $1,500 for rental of at least 50 hours in a multitrack studio, $1,000 for at least 100 hours in a two-track editing studio, $500 for telephone and other corrinunication. This tape will also be offered to stations around the world that have previously broadcast my work: National Public Radio, American Public Radio, British Broadcasting Corporation, Australian Broadcasting, Sender Freies Berlin, RIAS, Westdeutscher Rundfunk, Sveriges Radio.