Shalom, friend of Zamir,
The rains have stopped and the trees are finally in bloom! As we approach the grand finale of another packed season, it's clear that Zamir's mission of educating and entertaining audiences about the breadth and beauty of Jewish culture is alive and well. Read here about our many successful collaborations, including our spring concert, "Shalom Rav," on June 3. We hope to see you there!Kol B'Seder, with Cantor Jeff Klepper, Takes the Stage at "Shalom Rav"
Sunday, June 3, 8:00 pm at Sanders Theatre: Classical meets cool, rousing meets reflective -- music celebrating the enduring spirit and dramatic stories of the Jewish people. Our annual Sanders extravaganza joins Zamir, under the direction of Artistic Director Joshua Jacobson, with Cantor Jeff Klepper and Rabbi Daniel Freelander, of Kol B'Seder. The world-renowned duo, founded in 1973, has influenced the modern American Jewish movement with their unique, contemporary sound, which some have dubbed "American nusach."
The evening kicks off with Zamir performing majestic classics by 19th-century synagogue composer Louis Lewandowski, as well as expressive settings of biblical texts by Americans Leonard Bernstein, Daniel Pinkham, and Randall Thompson. The centerpiece is the brilliant a cappella "Roni Akarah," a rarely performed work by Israel's Paul Ben-Haim.
Kol B'Seder will take the stage to present new pieces and old favorites, followed by a joint set with Zamir and an instrumental ensemble led by Hankus Netsky, including new settings of Kol B'Seder's best-loved songs such as "Shalom Rav" (abundant peace). Be sure to order your tickets in advance for this special evening!
New CD Coming in June!
On our latest recording, Psalmsensation: A Multiethnic Concert Experience, Zamir and stellar guest vocalists and instrumentalists have created an unparalleled journey through the sounds and rhythms of the Book of Psalms. If you missed the live experience last June, then you won't want to miss this CD! And if you were there, relive the excitement of these extraordinary settings -- including ancient Jewish cantillation and Gregorian chant; liturgical compositions and songs by Jews, Christians, and a Muslim; and modern secular compositions from Israel, Brazil, and the United States.
Zamir at Hebrew College May 21
"From Hatikvah to Shir Lashalom: Israel's Musical Response to Social Change"
Monday, May 21, 7:30 pm, Hebrew College, 160 Herrick Road, Newton: As part of the Center for Adult Jewish Learning's annual lecture-concert series, Zamir, artists-in-residence, will perform some of Israel's best-known and best-loved songs, with background and context provided by Joshua Jacobson. (Josh will present a lecture, "The Music of Zionism," on Sunday, May 20, at 7:00 pm.) This popular event includes an audience sing-along; lyric sheets will be provided. Tickets: $12 advance registration; $15 at the door. Deadline for advance registration is May 15. For further information, click here.
Spring Selections and Winter Wrapup
On May 2, the Chorale performed for members of the Rabbinical Assembly's National Convention, this year held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Cambridge, Mass. As always, we were honored to bring the finest Jewish choral music to new listeners from around the United States. And we're guessing that the jitterbugging couple during "Ba Mir Bistu Sheyn" and the standing-O are signs the audience had fun too.
Sponsored by Congregation Beth Sholom of Lido Beach, NY, Zamir's May 6 concert showcased Zamir's unique brand of "edutainment," an exciting array of contemporary, classical, popular, Israeli, and liturgical works combined with Josh Jacobson's enlightening commentary. Newton's Cantor Charles Osborne was on hand to perform several of his compositions.
Braving Boston's highways in rush hour, Zamir's intrepid singers, accompanist Edwin Swanborn, and guest instrumentalists headed north to Merrimack College in North Andover on April 11 to perform "Holocaust and Rebirth," a Yom HaShoah concert. Sponsored by the college's Center for Christian-Jewish Relations, the program featured powerful music from the ghettos and concentration camps as well as uplifting contemporary songs from Israel and the United States. The strains of "Hatikvah" to close the evening evoked both the memories of those who were lost and our hopes for peace and serenity in the world.
A triumphant performance of Handel's "Hallelujah, Amen," from Judas Maccabaeus, capped a special day of music making at Regis College on March 18. Cantor Scott Sokol, Dean of Hebrew College's Jewish Music Institute, served as emcee for the 12th annual New England Jewish Choral Festival, which teamed up Zamir with Mak'hela, the Jewish Chorus of Western Massachusetts, and Koleinu, Jewish Community Chorus of Boston, for the first time. Kayla Werlin, Carol Marton, and Joshua Jacobson led their respective choirs in individual sets and then took turns at the podium for a glorious set featuring the 150-voice combined chorus. "This year's festival was a great example of the 'joyful noise' the Psalmist writes about," said Cantor Sokol. "When the groups came together, the musical synergy was extraordinary!"
Although some residents of Hebrew SeniorLife were confined to their rooms due to a flu outbreak on February 25, they were still able to watch Zamir via closed-circuit TV. Those attendees and their guests who filled the sanctuary also enjoyed the delightful program of contemporary songs as well as some familiar standards such as "Oseh Shalom." We're looking forward to returning next year for the annual tradition.
"Kol Hanshamah," the first annual All Jewish Day School music festival, held on February 11 at Natick High School, brought together children's choirs from area schools for a joyful afternoon of Jewish choral music across the generations. Hosted by Rabbi Moshe Waldoks, and organized by Trudy Shulman Fagen of the Solomon Schechter Day School of Greater Boston, the concert featured individual performances by groups from SSDSGB, MetroWest Jewish Day School, South Area SSDS, and Jewish Community Day School. From first-graders to seniors, the children demonstrated the discipline and musicianship that qualified them as Future Zamirniks of America -- and earned them the nakhas of their proud parents and teachers. Proceeds from the event went to the Rambam Medical Center, Haifa, Israel.
Two sold-out shows of "Jews and Blues" at the Leventhal-Sidman JCC launched 2007 -- a high- energy event teaming Zamir with Nathaniel Stringfield's band, HouseK'wake. Among the highlights of the January 27-28 collaboration were a hand-clapping, foot-tapping rendition of "Hineh Mah Tov" and rousing gospel tunes led by Stringfield and Joshua Jacobson.
Catskills, Here We Come!
After a hiatus last year, Zamir will be back to perform on July 8, opening night of the North American Jewish Choral Festival, held at the Hudson Valley Resort in Kerhonkson, NY. We're scheduled for 9:00 pm (Jewish Standard Time, of course!). Click here for details on the Festival.
Want Free Tickets? Become a "Friend of Zamir"
We need extra hands! Take tickets or distribute programs at our self-produced concerts. Or post fliers at your synagogue or in your community and receive a free ticket to one of our concerts. To volunteer, please contact Barbara Gaffin, Managing Director.
Keep in Touch!
Let us know what you're up to -- we love hearing from our friends near and far. If you would like to bring Zamir to perform a concert in your community, or to learn more about upcoming events, please contact us!
Barbara Gaffin, Managing Director, and Deborah Sosin, E-Notes Editor
Zamir Chorale of Boston