Congregation Rodeph Sholom’s Senior Cantor, Rebecca Garfein, Associate Cantor, Shayna De Lowe and Cantorial Intern, Ben Ellerin will commemorate the 75th Anniversary of Kristallnacht-“the Night of Broken Glass”, with the rarely performed and glorious music of renowned Viennese Cantor, Salomon Sulzer and Berlin composer, Louis Lewandowski at 6p.m., Friday, November 8, 2013 during Shabbat services. Also featured will be the newly commissioned song-cycle, “Perhaps a Butterfly,” composed by Eliot Bailen in memory of Cantor Garfein’s great-grandmother, Settchen Feist who after being sent to Theresienstadt, subsequently perished in Auschwitz. The song-cycle utilizes four poems written by children of Theresienstadt.
Rodeph Sholom’s Organist, J. David Williams and an augmented professional choir, will accompany the cantors. Kristallnacht occurred exactly 75 years ago on the night of November 9, 1938 and marked the beginning of the Holocaust. On Kristallnacht, Jewish homes, synagogues and businesses were destroyed by the Nazis and because of this violence, the streets were covered with the smashed windows, hence the name, “the Night of Glass.” This event is free of charge and the entire community is invited to attend. Rodeph Sholom is located at 7 West 83rd Street (off Central Park West.)
Cantor Rebecca Garfein is the Senior Cantor of Congregation Rodeph Sholom and is the first female Cantor to hold this position in the history of the congregation.
Cantor Garfein has appeared in numerous recitals throughout the United States, Israel, and Europe and has two solo CD recordings, a live recording from the 1997 Jewish Festival in Berlin entitled, “Sacred Chants of the Contemporary Synagogue” and her first studio recording, “Golden Chants in America…Commemorating 350 years of Jewish Music, 1654-2004,” the first U.S. recording to feature Jewish music spanning 350 years of life in America.
Cantor Garfein graduated cum laude from Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music with a degree in vocal performance and opera. In 1993, she received her Master’s Degree in Sacred Music and Cantorial Ordination from the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR).
Strings Magazine writes, “At Merkin Hall (NYC) ‘cellist Eliot Bailen displayed a warm focused tone, concentrated expressiveness and admirable technical command always at the service of the music” (July, ’99). Eliot Bailen is principal cello of the New York Chamber Ensemble, New Jersey Festival Orchestra, Orchestra New England, New York Bach Artists, Teatro Grattacielo and the New Choral Society. Founder and Artistic Director of the Sherman Chamber Ensemble whose performances the New York Times has described as “the Platonic ideal of a chamber music concert.” (July, 2005), Mr. Bailen is founder of the Chamber Music series at Congregation Rodeph Sholom in New York. Mr. Bailen received his Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA) from Yale University and is on the cello and chamber music faculty at Columbia University and Teachers College. Mr. Bailen has also gained national attention as a writer and producer of children’s music receiving over twenty-five commissions (including a Yale Alumni grant) for his “Song to Symphony” project, an extended school residency program that presents children’s original musicals in an orchestral setting (subject of a NY Times feature article, Sept. 2006).
Cantor Shayna De Lowe is the Associate Cantor of Congregation Rodeph Sholom since 2007, having been ordained by the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion that same year. Cantor De Lowe grew up in Springfield, MO and graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a degree in Music Education.
Cantor De Lowe wrote her master’s thesis about the music of the Ethiopian Jews as a result of her interest in world Jewry and her time spent in Israel during her Cantorial studies. While living in Jerusalem, she spent time researching the Ethiopian community and completed her thesis and subsequent recital, “I am Black and Beautiful, O Daughters of Jerusalem: The Development of the Music of the Ethiopian Jews here in New York.”
Ben Ellerin is a fourth-year cantorial student at Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion. He earned both his undergraduate and his master of music from Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music.
While an undergraduate, Ben founded and served as music director of IU Hillel’s Hooshir, a 12-member auditioned Jewish a cappella group that performed at the 2006 White House Hanukkah Party under his preparation and leadership. Beyond his studies and work as a graduate instructor, Ben conducted the IU Symphonic Chorus and Orchestra and was active throughout the Midwest as a conductor, singer, and cantorial soloist.
The entire community is invited to join us. Congregation Rodeph Sholom is located at 7 W. 83rd Street off of Central Park West. For more information, please call 646-454-3030.