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Photos from Berlin, Germany 
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WINTER 2017 
Dear Friends of Zamir,

Happy 2017 to our Zamir family in the United States and abroad! Even amidst ongoing social and political changes, we remain true to our mission of building community and creating harmonyperforming and disseminating the best in Jewish choral music. In March, we'll be celebrating Psalms at our joint concert with the Falmouth Chorale on Cape Cod, and in June at Temple Emanuel in Newton. See details below. Also in this issue, Josh Jacobson's musings on his recent trip to Berlin and news of his other international choral and publishing ventures. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the journey!
In each issue of E-Notes, Artistic Director Joshua Jacobson offers his unique insights and experiences as a world-renowned scholar, composer, conductor, and influential teacher of Jewish music.
Report from Berlin: December 2016
Josh Jacobson I wonder what my father would have thought of all this. After serving with the U.S. Armed Forces in Europe in 1944-45, he could not bring himself to buy anything that was manufactured in G ermany.
Not the cars, the cameras, or the drafting equipment. And yet here I am in Berlin at a festival of synagogue music that is sponsored by a consortium of non-Jewish business leaders and includes laudatory speeches by local politicians.

I wonder what my father would have thought about all this...
This is the sixth annual Louis Lewandowski Festival , produced by the amazing entrepreneur Nils Busch-Petersen . The theme of the festival this year is the synagogue music of the Baroque era. The host choir is the Berlin Synagogue Ensemble , a professional group that performs every Shabbat at the Pestalozzistrasse Synagogue . We also hear the children's choir from that synagogue, which is joined by the children from London's Belsize Square Synagogue . The Leipzig Synagogue Choir has no Jewish members and doesn't perform liturgically, but is 100 percent dedicated to reviving and performing musics of the Jewish people. 
Josh delivers keynote address in Berlin
The Lewandowski Choir, from Jo hannesburg, has both Jewish and non-Jewish singers, white and black, and is one of the few mixed synagogue choirs in South Africa.  But the pièce de résistance of the festival is   Profeti della Quinta, five male singers and a lutenist, originally from Israel and now based in Basel, Switzerland. They perform the synagogue music of Salamone Rossi with awesome clarity and perfect intonation. A lovely bonus are beautiful new settings of Shir HaShirim , composed by Profeti's Elam Rotem in the style of the early Italian Baroque.
Festival Finale
See sidebar on left for additional photos.
All the singers come together for meetings, rehearsals, city tours, kosher meals, synagogue services, and sold-out concerts. The streets are beautifully decorated for Christmas, while at our hotel, the receptionist speaks perfect Hebrew; we are offered Shabbat keys and kosher food. 
Just a block from the hotel is a beautiful Weihnachtsmarkt (Christmas market), a miniature city of amusements for children; and booths filled with food and drink, crafts, and souvenirs. The area is crowded with Berliners, young and old, as well as tourists from around the world. Just hours after we left the city, we heard the news of the horrendous terrorist attack. Relief at our narrow escape mingles with grief and mourning for the victims.
We come away impressed again with the
Were he alive today, I think my father would have been pleased.
beauty and cultural riches of Berlin, a city that acknowledges the sins of its recent past and actively supports a renaissance of the Jewish community and its culture. We come away impressed with the power of music, and especially group singing, to bring together people from different backgrounds, different politics, different religions. In these turbulent times, music is a welcome oasis. We come away impressed with the warm welcome we receive from our hosts here in Berlin. 
Were he alive today, I think my father would have been pleased.
Joshua Jacobson is on the advisory board of the Louis Lewandowski Festival and was the keynote speaker for this year's festival. His monograph on composer Salamone Rossi was issued by Hentrich & Hentrich in conjunction with the festival.
Josh Jacobson Honored with Lifetime Achievement Award 
JJ and Majie Zeller
J osh with Majie Zeller, Chair, CANE Board of Directors
a ceremony held at the Newton Cultural Center at City Hall on October 30, Josh Jacobson received the Alfred Nash Patterson Lifetime Achievement Award, presented by the  Choral Arts New England (CANE), formerly the Alfred Nash Patterson Foundation.
The Lifetime Achievement Award is presented annually by CANE to individuals who have made exceptional contributions to choral singing and its culture within New England. Previous recipients include conductors Dr. Ann Howard Jones and John Oliver and composers Alice Parker and Daniel Pinkham.
JJ conducts at CANE
Josh conducts at CANE ceremony
Josh also received a Certificate of Commendation from Newton Mayor Setti D. Warren at the event. According to Linda Plaut, Director of the Mayor's Office for Cultural Affairs, "Newton is honored to have Josh Jacobson living in our community and fortunate that he so generously shares his passion for music with the wider community as he did for Newton's Festival of the Arts, where he brought together an ecumenical chorus that inspired all who were privileged to participate and to attend that concert. Congratulations Josh on this well-deserved award." 
Yasher koach,
Josh. We're proud of your lifelong contribution to the choral arts community.  
Photos by Larry Sandberg
Hanukkah Celebration at Central Reform Temple 
On December 18, Zamir was again delighted to perform in the cantata "A Light Through the Ages," an annual Hanukkah celebration held at Emmanuel Church in Boston. The afternoon event, conducted by Zamir's assistant conductor Andrew Mattfeld, was created and hosted by Rabbi Howard Berman, of the Central Reform Temple and included narration recounting events in Jewish history, particularly the story of the Maccabees. At the end, audience members participated in a candle-lighting ceremony, which illuminated the sanctuary.
"What an incredible two hours," wrote audience member Nicol é Keane in an email. "Your choir's musical illustrations were tremendously moving. There were young couples around me and an older woman behind me--everyone had tears in their eyes. It was such an unexpected, meaningful, and heartening way to usher in the holiday spirit."
"Open the Gates of Song" at Beth El Temple in Belmont 
Kiddush sung by Louise Treitman
Cantor Louise Treitman sings "Kiddush"
On December 11, Zamir performed a wide-ranging concert, featuring soloist  Cantor Louise Treitman, Beth El Temple's newly installed cantor. The congregation warmly welcomed the Chorale and Cantor Treitman, longtime Zamir soprano and former assistant conductor. Highlights included psalms from different traditions; Kurt Weill's "Kiddush"; and works by Yehezkel Braun, including the Cantor's lovely rendition of his "Songs of the Lily and the Dove" cycle, with Ed Swanborn, accompanist. The group surrounded the audience for a moving coda, John Rutter's "The Lord Bless You." 
"The Majesty of Hallel" at Temple Shalom in Newton 
On November 14, Zamir packed the
Photo by Mickey Goldin
See sidebar on left for additional photos. 
sanctuary for the third performance in the Divine Majesty Series, which was live-streamed over the Internet to Zamir fans far and wide. The concert included Hallel settings (Psalms 113-118) and other celebratory psalms by Lewandowski, Sulzer, Naumbourg, Halévy, Alkin, and Mombach, with soloist Cantor Peter Halpern of Temple Shalom, and organist Ed Swanborn and harpist Judy Saiki. To end the event, Zamir stood in the aisles for Lewandowski's beautiful "Blessing," followed by an audience talk-back. 
The Divine Majesty Series is made possible by an anonymous underwriter in memory of Mary Wolfman Epstein and Cantor Barney Mould.
As always, let us know what you're up to--we love hearing from our friends from around the world. Stay healthy, stay warm, and have a wonderful winter, wherever you are. See you in the spring! 
Barbara Gaffin              Deborah Sosin
Managing Director         Editor, E-Notes