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Welcome to the website of the European Cantors Association
Patrons: Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis; Cantor Naftali Herstik, Cantor Joseph Malovany, Cantor Asher Hainovitz

Voice of the Cantor Launches A Second Series - Weds 13th October

Following the success of our first series of Voice of the Cantor in which, over eleven programmes, we discussed contemporary issues with panels of cantors from across the religious spectrum, we return this Autumn with a second series. This time we are focussed on cantors who have made their mark on the profession.

In a series of ten one-on-one programmes, ECA Director Alex Klein will talk to the luminaries in the cantorate whose legacy needs little introduction. The series will include cantors Jacob Mendelsohn, Moshe Dubiner, Faith Steinsnyder, Michael Plaskow, Robert Kieval, Deborah Katchko-Gray and other distinguished practitioners, to be announced.

We begin on Wednesday October 13th at 7pm UK Time with ECA regular, Cantor Beny Maissner. Cantor Emeritus at Holy Blossom Temple, Toronto; Conductor and Music Director of Lachan Jewish Chamber Choir, and a part-time faculty member at Abraham Geiger College.

A versatile Shliach Tzibbur and performer, has performed at Carnegie Hall in New York, Jerusalem Theatre in Jerusalem, Mann Auditorium in Tel Aviv, Louise M. Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco, and The Washington Center for the Performing Arts in Washington State; as well as Toronto venues Roy Thomson Hall, The Ford Centre for the Performing Arts, Air Canada Centre, Koerner Hall, and Leah Posluns Theatre

He has been featured with several symphony orchestras, including Toronto, San Francisco, Winnipeg, Hamilton, York University, Bulgarian Sofia, and Ra’anana. And at the invitation of the Centre for Jewish Music in Hanover, Germany, he returned to his father’s home city to participate in a concert commemorating the 70th anniversary of Kristallnacht.

Cantor Maisser served on the executive board of the Cantors’ Assembly (Conservative) and as Vice President of the American Conference of Cantors (Reform). In recognition of his significant contribution to the reconciliation between Christians and Jews and Germans and Jews, and for restoring and preserving the great Jewish musical heritage of Germany, Cantor Maissner was awarded the Cross of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany, Germany’s highest civilian honour.

To register for this event please go to https://bit.ly/eca-voc2.

Jolles EncyclopaediaBook Launched 6th October:
Encyclopaedia of British Jewish Cantors,
Chazanim, Ministers and Synagogue Musicians:
their history and culture

The European Cantors Association staged the International Launch of Michael Jolles’s
Encyclopaedia of British Jewish Cantors, Chazanim, Ministers and Synagogue Musicians: their history and culture
on October 6th. 

This book is a major contribution to the knowledge of cantors and ministers who have served British Jewish communities in a musical capacity over the centuries from 1656 to the present day. After ten years of dedicated research, Dr Michael Jolles has produced a remarkable volume of material never assembled in one place before. It includes much information that is not available in any other publication.

Notable quotes from the international launch are :

“Singing is so essential as part of our davening….Imagine someone reading a Beatles song without the music. 
When the Chazan begins to sing it transforms us.  There is no talking to G-d, only singing”. 

Rabbi Dr Raphael Zarum; Dean London School of Jewish Studies.

“A publication of the this breadth and depth is so significant for Jewish Music.  We need to have one of these for US cantors”.  
Professor Mark Kligman, Professor of Musicology, and Director of the Lowell Milken Center for Music of American Jewish Experience, UCLA

“Cantors are a crucial part of Jewish history and yet comprise the thinnest, glimmering thread of actual scholarship.
The Jolles book adds to a now-wonderful blossoming of scholarship on the cantorate.”  
Cantor Matt Austerklein, PhD Scholar, Halle-Wittenberg University, Germany.

To watch the recording of the event go here. To listen to a podcast of the event go here. To download the book (which is free of charge) go here.


A presentation by cantorial expert David Prager and ECA Director Alex Klein on '5 Dazzling UK Cantors' in junction with Edgware United Synagogue was a hit with an international audience and many engaged participants

If you missed the event, it's recorded here

Robert Brody's favourite Yamim Noraim Melodies

For those who may have missed it, here is the presentation by Robert Brody on August 31st of his favourite Yamim Noraim melodies
in a presentation hosted by Edgware United Synagogue

VOC Screen ShotCatch Up With The Acclaimed 'Voice Of The Cantor' Series

ECA has received many plaudits for our first 'Voice of the Cantor' series, which ran from March to July. This first series ran over 11 sessions and covered a number of contemporary issues for the cantorate today. You can catch up with the first series here.

We will be announcing our second series of Voice of the Cantor after the High Holydays.

First Night Selichos Live Recordings

If you didn't manage to attend a service online for First Night Selicos this year, here's a catch up of a diverse sample:

Hampton Synagogue, US - Cantor Netanel Herstik (Highlights): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qAX7vSQBSQM
Edgware United Synagogue, UK - Cantor Yossi Schwartz : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pe_ZKHjNTQ
Shabbaton Choir,
UK - Rabbi Cantor Lionel Rosenfeld and Cantor Johnny Turgel : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kfCysPDdJOU
Park East Synagogue, US - Chief Cantor Yitzchak Meir Helfgot - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bb2PWdwj4wI
Central Synagogue NYC, US - Cantor Dan Mutlu & Student Cantor Shani Ben-Or : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b9wNlt3N6kU
Temple Israel Charlotte,
US - Cantor Shira Lissek : https://youtu.be/UMh7MFmiU00
Western Marble Arch, UK - Cantor Yossi Muller : https://www.facebook.com/westernmarblearch/videos/535269790924562

ECA Summer Newsletter Published

ECA's Summer Newsletter is now out. ECA Director Alex Klein reveiws the recent 'Voice of the Cantor' series; Daniel Tunkel asks "Do we need a synagogue choir?"; and Cantor Beny Maissner reflects on the European Cantors Conventions - across the spectrum of Jewish denominations.

Go here to hear the recording of 'From Shtibl to Pirchei Kodesh' with

<-- Cantor Benjamin Maissner
Cantor Emeritus of Holy Blossom Temple of Toronto and teacher and performer

talking to Alex Klein -->
Director of the European Cantors Association on his cantorial journey and philosophy

Recorded live on June 8th.


Additional Resources:

JVocals is an innovative Israeli startup designed to boost the revival of Jewish music, with an emphasis on cantorial art.
For cantors who want to list and directly promote their services there are no registration fees:

Links to other cantorial-related sites

Shuls With A Cantor In The United Kingdom (please advise of any changes)

Layaning in English

About ECA:

ECA is an independent organisation, based on orthodox tradition and convention but open to all who are interested in the music of the synagogue and the role and art of the cantor.

European Cantors on Facebook

European Cantors On Twitter

* See the Aims of the European Cantors Association.

* See the people involved in the European Cantors Association.

ECA was officially launched on 2 July 2012 at the 7th Annual European Cantors' Convention Manchester UK 2 - 5 July 2012,
by Cantor Joseph Malovany of the 5th Avenue Synagogue New York.

Cantor Malovany is also Professor of Liturgical Music at Yeshiva University and co-Director of the Moscow Academy for Liturgical Music.

Last Updated 10th October 2021