Shir Hadash, Our Song
“Get into the habit of singing a tune—
It will give you new life and fill you with joy.”
—Rabbi Nachman of Breslov
Congregation Shir Hadash is a community that loves music. Our members love to sing, and our services include music reflecting a wide range of composers and musical styles appropriate to each service.
New members are treated to a morning with Cantor Devorah Felder-Levy learning some of Shir Hadash’s favorite songs. We provide CDs to our Hebrew school and B’nai Mitzvah students with some of the liturgical music selections of a typical Friday night or Saturday morning service and the Cantor is always willing to make extra CDs to help one feel more comfortable at services. Occasionally, we offer classes either on Sunday mornings or on Tuesday evenings that relate to Jewish music or to learning about the music of our Liturgy. Sometimes, this is in the form of a Cantillation class (teaching how to chant Torah, Haftarah or even Megillat Esther) or sometimes courses on synagogue music.
The adult volunteer choir rehearses twice a month during the year and participates in the music worship at our choir service on the third Friday of each month following High Holy Days through June. The choir rehearses weekly during the summer in preparation for the High Holy Days. The choir is also in demand for special holiday and event services such as Friday Night Live or special composer-in-residence programs, contributing much warmth and beauty to our congregation’s worship experience. One does not necessarily need to read music to become part of the choir, nor be able to read Hebrew; being able to carry a tune is very helpful.
Makelah: The Children’s Choir
Our Children’s choir is composed of children in grades K-6. They rehearse on selected Sundays following Sunday school and sing 3 times a year at our family services. In addition, our Makelah also participates at other special events at Shir Hadash, like our composer-in-residence services, and in the greater community.
Religious School Music
We believe strongly in having music be a part of our curriculum at Congregation Shir Hadash. Using the talents of wonderful song-leaders, our children learn the songs that coincide with the curriculum they are learning in class, the popular songs sung in the Reform movement and songs that will help them be comfortable participating in services. Each class has music 10 to 12 times over the course of the school year on Sunday mornings, including Sunday T’fila (prayer) for grades K-3 and weekday T’fila for Hebrew School students.