web analytics
September 16, 2014 / 21 Elul, 5774
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
Apartment 758x530 Africa-Israel at the Israel Real Estate Exhibition in New York

Africa Israel Residences, part of the Africa Israel Investments Group led by international businessman Lev Leviev, will present 7 leading projects on the The Israel Real Estate Exhibition in New York on Sep 14-15, 2014.



Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

A Shabbat Of Heavenly Voices


It’s no secret to those who know me that I have a great appreciation for chazzanut. I have written many articles about the wonderful cantorial concerts I’ve attended sponsored by Cantors World, an organization dedicated to bringing back the great role of the chazzan in Jewish life. But as enjoyable as those events are, it’s almost impossible to equal the amazing experience of the annual Shabbat Chazzanut.

For the past three years Cantors World has sponsored a weekend event featuring a wonderful array of cantors and choirs in a New Jersey hotel. This past Shabbat marked the fourth such weekend and it was nothing less than thrilling.

This year the featured cantors were Israel Rand, Yaakov Stark, Pinchas Cohen and Moishe Shulhoff. The choir was Kolot Min Shamayim, conducted by Raffi Biton. My husband and I especially looked forward to hearing Pinchas Cohen, our chazzan at the Manhattan Beach Jewish Center, daven Shacharit on Shabbat.

After candle lighting, everyone – men and women – went to the shul for services. Kabbalat Shabbat was led by Cantor Israel Rand. I was surprised – and delighted – to hear Lecha Dodi sung to the Modzitz marching tune for Ayn Kitzvah. Maariv was led by Chazzan Yaakov Stark. It was inspiring, and some of the davening actually brought tears to my eyes.

With hundreds of guests to accommodate, seating can be tricky. We were happy to sit with friends we made at last year’s Shabbat Chazzanut, Michael and Nancy Reich of Mamaroneck, New York. Also with us were Cantor and Mrs. Daniel Gildar, Cantor and Mrs. Solomon Mendelson, and our good friends Cantor Cohen and his wife Chaya. The delicious meals were provided by Schick Caterers (and Michael Schick could be seen at all times in the dining rooms and tea room).

Shacharit was led by Chazzan Cohen, who is blessed with a truly magnificent voice; when he davens I always feel our prayers have a direct line to Heaven. Chazzan Benny Rogosnitzky, president of Cantors World, observed that Pinchas Cohen is not only a magnificent chazzan, he’s also a beautiful baal tefillah. I know exactly what he meant. When Cantor Cohen davens, it isn’t a performance – it’s something he brings from his soul. Combine that with a perfect nusach and a wonderful voice and you have a rare talent. Fortunate are those who can daven with him leading the congregation.

After Shacharit and the Torah reading we enjoyed a huge Kiddush and then returned to shul for Mussaf led by Cantor Moishe Shulhoff. Had I not already been standing, I surely would have come out of my seat when I heard one of my favorite pieces for Kedusha. The choir had adapted the Jerusalem Great Synagogue’s Hallelukah from its Rosh Hashanah service. Cantor Israel Rand was also on the bimah for Kedusha.

Throughout Shabbat we heard divrei Torah from the scholar in residence, noted author and psychiatrist Rabbi Dr. Abraham Twerski. His parsha thoughts are a weekly fixture in our home and whenever I listen to him speak it’s as if our book comes to life. I gladly made the choice to do without a long Shabbat afternoon nap for yet another chance to hear him.

One of the highlights of every Shabbat Chazzanut is the Saturday night concert. All the chazzanim who led the Shabbat prayers sang selections at the concert, to the accompaniment of Cantor Daniel Gildar. The choir also performed, and mention must be made of their mesmerizing and harmonious voices.

Also on hand was a guest cantor who arrived that evening, Zanvil Werzberger. A happy surprise for all of us was Shimmy Ehrenthal, a 12-year-old boy with a striking voice – definitely a chazzan in the making.

The concert was breathtaking. Friends of ours from Miami Beach, Norman and Joan Ciment, who had flown up for the weekend and were first-time attendees, repeatedly told us how impressed they were with the entire weekend, especially the concert.

The night was far from over. After a midnight buffet we went back to the auditorium for “Open Mike,” when guests who feel they have talent get to sing for the audience. It’s all in fun and some voices were quite good.

About the Author: Naomi Klass Mauer is associate publisher of The Jewish Press.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “A Shabbat Of Heavenly Voices”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Kreshnik Berisha is not Jewish but played for a German soccer team - before joining ISIS.
German Man on Trial for ISIS Membership Played On Jewish Soccer Team
Latest Indepth Stories
Donny-Fuchs-medium

Originally scheduled to be held elsewhere, the hotel canceled, pressured by local missionary groups

syria_stratfo

It’s likely that some of the rebel factions, including US clients, have indeed made pacts with ISIS

Phyllis Chesler

Imam Tafsirli of the Harlem Islamic center: “You cannot be a Muslim without believing in Jesus”

Gas Pump

If simple fuel choice were implemented, the power of petroleum and those who sell it would cease.

Value of IS: It enables people to see the place to which all other Islamist fascism is headed.

“When Frank does something he does it well and you don’t have to worry about dotting the i’s or crossing the t’s.”

President Obama: “ISIL is not Islamic. No religion condones the killing of innocents”

he time of the Uman pilgrimage is upon us, and we dare not ignore the opportunity to highlight the danger.

Healing requires that the victim be validated for being harmed and the guilty assume responsibility.

During the war, not once was Hashem’s name mentioned to the nation by Israel’s PM or gov’t officials

How many illegal Arab structures are there in the city? Why are they not being destroyed?

We did not win the war in Gaza because we are still captive to the concept of the 2 state solution.

Trapped in a false notion of power, America will lose the battle in the same way Israel now loses.

It’s a cliché, but nonetheless true that 9/11 changed my life. There is evil in the world. Our grandparents were right.

More Articles from Naomi Klass Mauer
Mauer-080814-Nadia-Yehudit

After they saw what happened in Gush Katif in 2005, they understood Judea and Samaria could well be next.

Abusive men are usually on their best behavior before marriage. But they do provide clues.

“It’s the one time and place where so many people can come together and tell the world that we support Israel.”

The new soldiers received a gun and a Tanach, in which the “deed” to the land of Israel is found.

My involvement with Frum Divorce corresponds to a lot of the work I do at The Jewish Press helping agunot and others going through divorce.

Almost every year I am invited to attend the grand banquet of the International Shluchos Convention, the climax of a four-day weekend that attracts some 2,500 Chabad shluchos from all over the world – from Argentina to Australia, from Thailand to Kazakhstan, and from every state in the U.S. It takes place the weekend of Chaf Bet Shevat, the yahrzeit of Rebbetzin Chaya Mushka, wife of the Lubavitcher Rebbe, zt”l.

You have been a role model and an inspiration to us from as far back as I can remember.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/a-shabbat-of-heavenly-voices/2007/02/14/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: