The inspirational true story of an Allied POW appointed Kapellmeister to the Nazis in Auschwitz.
When called up to fight in yet another World War, Drum Major Jackson promised his beloved wife Mabel that he would return to lead his band and play for her once more. In May 1940, he was captured at Dunkirk and interned in several German forced labour camps throughout Poland. Two years later he was transferred to Auschwitz IV, part of the notorious concentration camp complex where it is not widely known held Allied POWs.
When his captors appointed Jackson their ‘Kapellmeister’ (man in charge of music), he seized the opportunity to provide entertainment for his fellow prisoners at rehearsals, and cover for escapees during concerts. Finally liberated in May 1945, malnourished and gravely ill, Jackson carried his secret war diary—an incredible exposé on five years of life and death in Nazi concentration camps. THE MUSIC MAKER OF AUSCHWITZ IV, based on Jackson’s diary, is written by his granddaughter. It is a thrilling testament to the resilience one man found in the darkest of times through his two greatest loves—music and the woman who waited for him.
Jaci Byrne is the granddaughter of The Music Maker, the late Drum Major Henry Barnes Jackson. A full-time writer, Jaci has published four novels and a series of children’s books. The Music Maker is her first work of non-fiction. She lives in Avalon Beach, Sydney.