About Rivka Amado Rivka Amado was born in Holon Israel but spen tmost her adult life in Jerusalem. She grew up In a Ladino-speaking home in Holon, where she learned traditional melodies from her grandmother, Rivka Amado-Mandil. For years Rivka sang Ladino songs and played the piano informally, and as well as sang in her synagogue choir in Jerusalem. Since moving to Berkeley,CA on 2004 she has dedicated much of her time researching Sephardic culture and performing traditional Ladino music. With the aid of guitarist Joel Siegel, she has developed a program, A Journey Back to Spain. In this program she mixes historical narrative, accounts of Sephardic culture, and popular Ladino songs. Amado and Siegel have performed in many venues in the San Francisco Bay Area, and elsewhere. This program unites Rivka's two halves; her musical half and her scholarly half. She earned her PhD from the University of Toronto in 1990, held post doctoral fellowships in medical ethics at the Hastings Center and at the Hebrew University, and has published widely in medical ethics and related fields. She has also taught at Tel Aviv University, Bar Ilan University, Stanford, Berkeley and Princeton, and has received several awards for her scholarship and teaching. Rivka continues her scholarly and her musical work both in the United States and Israel. In March 2009 she released her first album, Hija Mia, a collection of traditional Ladino songs, accompanied by master guitarist Joel Siegel and an ensemble of other talented musicians. She is planning a second album which will contain more traditional Ladino songs, as well as original compositions of her own in Ladino, Hebrew, and English.