Thanks for sending the very loaded image of Salamon Lehrer to me.
From his name and attire I can see he is Chassidic. An Eastern European ultra- orthodox sect which emanated from Hungary in the 17Th century. I wonder if he was originally from Germany, a quick google revealed someone who could be him from Dresden, married in Antwerp and emigrated to America. plausible. I don't know how specifically you are thinking of working, or if he is purely the catalyst, but if the project does centre on the Sephardim ( Mediterranean Jews)
Actually this man seems to be of Ashkenazi. ( European Jewish) origin. Do you know of Yasmin Levi? She sings in pure Ladino, can get hold of a c.d. copy if you're interested. I've also been told about a new Spanish Sephardic heritage website for tourists.. will let you know more if you wish.
Apparently it's being started by the family of someone living in Brighton who himself speaks very good pure hebrew.
Tell me if any of the above is unwanted or unhelpful to you.
And I'm interested in the Chicago artist link.
Thanks for the cake and the meeting.