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ECA Voice of the Cantor

ECA Voice of the Cantor

By European Cantors
An innovative new series of talks in which renowned cantors speak about the joys and fears of the Jewish Prayer leader across the Jewish world today. In 10 episodes, building fortnightly.

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Voice of the Cantor - Episode 7b : Who Needs Nusach Part II

ECA Voice of the Cantor

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Voice of the Cantor - Episode 7b : Who Needs Nusach Part II
What do we mean by Nusach and wherein lies its importance?  Is this centuries-old tradition, the immutable structure for the music of prayer?  Or is the melody of the synagogue more changeable and less constant than we think?  Is it OK to use modern Israeli or Yeshivah tunes instead? Or even secular songs ?   Nusach Part II examines these issues from a North American perspective with a wholly North American panel. Is this any different from that of the Minhag Anglia communities? Are North American synagogues more or less demanding of change and are the influences and infiltrations at all different?   Should we fight against these influences or accept them as inevitable and welcome them?   Our panel was:   Cantor Hinda Eisen Labovitz Ohr Kodesh Congregation, Chevy Chase, Maryland   Charles Heller Writer and retired choirmaster, Toronto   Cantor Jacob Mendelson Eminent cantor and international performer   Cantor Gideon Zelermyer Congregation Shaar Hashomayim, Montreal   Moderator Hirsh Cashdan   This event was held jointly with the Cantors Assembly Recorded live on 2nd June 2021, 22nd Sivvan 5781
01:31:37
June 6, 2021
Voice of the Cantor - Episode 7a : Who Needs Nusach? Part I
What do we mean by Nusach and wherein lies its importance? Is this centuries-old tradition, the immutable structure for the music of prayer? Or is the melody of the synagogue more changeable and less constant than we think? Is it OK to use modern Israeli or Yeshivah tunes instead? Or even secular songs ? In Nusach Part I, we join a panel of Cantors and Rabbis from around the world inured in the British Commonwealth tradition (Minhag Anglia) to discuss this. With Cantor Asher Hainovitz, Yeshurun Synagogue, Jerusalem Rabbi Cantor Geoffrey Shisler, Teacher and Rabbi/Cantor(retired) Charles Heller, Writer and retired choirmaster Toronto Rabbi Benjy Rickman, Holy Law Synagogue, Manchester UK Moderator Hirsh Cashdan Recorded Live on 26th May 2021; Sivvan 15th 5781
01:27:28
May 30, 2021
Voice of the Cantor - Episode 6 : The Sephardi Cantor - How Similar, How Different?
In 'Voice of the Cantor' the series to date has primarily considered the cantor as the chief singer of the Ashkenazi synagogue.   But Sephardi and Oriental communities have their cantors and leaders too.    Their roles and styles are sometimes quite similar to those of the traditional Ashkenazi cantor, but often very different as well.     What are the core similarities and differences?  What can cantors (and rabbis and communities) in the two wings of Judaism learn from each other. More specifically, what are Sephardi communities doing to preserve and communicate their heritage?     Our panel included Ashkenazim who serve Sephardi communities and Sephardim who serve Ashkenazi communities, for what was a colourful cross-cultural discussion.   This session featured:  Cantor Eliot Alderman : Freelance Synagogue Musician, UK Cantor Aaron Bensoussan : Freelance Hazzan, Toronto Rabbi Jeff Berger : Wembley Sephardi Community, London, UK Hazzan Dr. Ramón Tasat : Shirat HaNefesh Cong., Maryland, US   Moderator Daniel Tunkel   Recorded Live on 12th May 2021, 1st Sivvan 5781
01:26:07
May 16, 2021
Voice of the Cantor - Episode 5 : The Carlebach Conundrum
In “The Carlebach Conundrum” we examine the issues presented by the type of music used in services in the genre of the late Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach, focusing on the phenomenon of the music, which might be described as neo-Hasidic or 'easy singing music'. Leaving aside any view as to the subjective musical merits of Carlebach’s own compositions, we simply note that the man started something, which others have continued and developed upon.     Why did this happen?   We wanted to explore the degree to which music like Carlebach’s has become the ‘new tradition’, and what this sort of music brings to a service (or what it takes away). with Cantor Asher Hainovitz, Yeshurun Synagogue, Jerusalem   Rabbi Yossi Binstock, St John’s Wood Synagogue, London   Rabbi Michael Wolk, Temple Israel, Charlotte NC, USA Cantor Yehuda Marx, Heaton Park Synagogue, Manchester UK Alex Klein Director, European Cantors Association   Moderator Russell Grossman Recorded live on 28 April 2021, 16 Iyyar 5781
01:33:04
May 3, 2021
Voice of the Cantor - Episode 4 : The Challenge Of Modern Orthodox For The Cantorate
Does the Modern Orthodox agenda leave room for the conventional cantor?   A discussion with  Michael Goldstein,  President, United Synagogue UK   Cantor / Minister Alby Chait,  United Hebrew Congregation, Leeds UK Cantor Steven Leas, Central Synagogue, London UK Rabbi Cantor Danny Bergson, St Annes Hebrew Congregation, St Annes UK Cantor Adam Caplan, Prestwich Hebrew Congregation, Manchester UK   Moderator Hirsh Cashdan   Recorded live on 14th April 2021, 2nd Iyyar 5781
01:32:44
April 19, 2021
Voice of the Cantor - Episode 3 : Passover In Pandemic
How have we adapted after a year of the modern plague? Three experienced ministers from UK orthodox communities talk with ECA's Hirsh Cashdan about the special challenges of the pandemic for their communities and how they have negotiated a second 'Passover in Pandemic'.  Recorded live on 31st March 2021.
01:30:17
April 5, 2021
Voice of the Cantor - Episode 2 : Crossing The Pond
Three experienced cantors Cantor Benny Rogosnitzky (Orthodox, NYC); Cantor Jason Green (Conservative, Ottawa); and Rabbi Cantor Gershon Silins (London), who've practised in UK and North America discuss, if the nusach's the same and the music's similar, what's different for them and their congregations working either side of the Atlantic?  In conversation with ECA's Russell Grossman
01:23:46
March 21, 2021
Voice of the Cantor - Episode 1 : Dudu Fisher 'Never On A Friday'
As a curtain-raiser for European Cantors Association's innovative programme Voice of the Cantor, we presented internationally renowned cantor and star of the musical theatre, Dudu Fisher, in conversation with the ECA’s Director Alex Klein, exploring his amazing trajectory and how he has managed to balance a career on the bimah and the stage. This event was held in conjunction with the Cantors Assembly and recorded live on Wednesday March 3rd 2021. 
01:09:05
March 7, 2021