How Saba Kept Singing

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This new Retro Report documentary traces the journey of Holocaust survivor David Wisnia as he returns to Auschwitz and unlocks a secret from his past. “How Saba Kept Singing” was made in collaboration with HiddenLight Productions, Burnt Umber Productions and the WNET Group’s reporting initiative Exploring Hate. Sara Taksler is the director, writer and producer of the film.

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Holocaust survivor David Wisnia, known to his family as Saba, returns to Auschwitz to explore his past and unlocks a secret in this Retro Report film for PBS, directed by Sara Taksler and made in collaboration with Burnt Umber Productions and with support from Thirteen WNET and Exploring Hate.

    Watch 'How Saba Kept Singing'

    David Wisnia, known to his family as Saba, had never told the whole truth about how he survived as a prisoner at the Auschwitz Nazi concentration camp. The family knew that he had used his singing voice to entertain the guards, and that his musical gift had changed his fate. But David’s grandson Avi Wisnia suspected that there was more to the story.

    Watch the film here, or click below to request a downloadable link that can be used to screen the film for organizations and friends.

    Avi Wisnia

    Avi Wisnia, right, here with his grandfather David Wisnia, is an award-winning singer, songwriter, storyteller and educator based in Philadelphia. He continues to share his saba’s stories and songs of survival, and is available as a speaker and performer at screenings of “How Saba Kept Singing.”

    Sara Taksler

    Sara Taksler, left, with David Wisnia, is the writer, director and producer of “How Saba Kept Singing,” which premiered at the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival in April 2022. Sara worked in television for two decades, including 12 years at “The Daily Show,” where she was a senior producer. Her previous documentary, “Tickling Giants,” premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival. Sara is available to appear at screenings to discuss “How Saba Kept Singing.”