1887-1945) was born into a large musical family. A violinist, conductor, composer, and theater critic from Lodz, Poland, he toured Europe and even came to the U.S. as a member of a theater orchestra. In the spring of 1940, the Germans declared part of Lodz a ghetto and moved all Jews and Gypsies to that area. The ghetto became a slave labor camp with more than 75,000 workers.
Beigelman was an active participant in the cultural life of the ghetto, writing orchestra works and songs describing life there, many of which were censored by the authorities and sung in secret. Secret diaries found underground after the war mention Beigelman conducting the first symphonic concert there March 1, 1941, followed by a concert for chorus and orchestra on March 13th. Deported to Auschwitz in 1944, he was then sent to a slave labor camp, where he died of exhaustion in February, 1945. Tsigaynerlid is a tribute to some of the Gypsies in the Lodz ghetto attempting to drown their sorrows in song and dance. Some 500,000 Gypsies were liquidated during World War II.