Staff Picks

Josh Breitzer

Cantor
Congregation Beth Elohim
Brooklyn
Age: 33
Nominated by: Rachel Timoner
Song: “Da Mei’ayin Bata,” Joshua Breitzer

As a classically trained musician, I have experienced art’s power to inspire. As a Jew, nowhere have I felt this more potently than during worship. In my cantorate I hold myself to the highest artistic standards, to use my voice to enable others’ voices, and to delve into the vast canon of Jewish music to enhance prayer, engage in study and expand our sense of the sacred. Whether by composing original liturgical settings, presenting timeless repertoire in contemporary ways, or teaching traditional melodies to the next generation, I seek to create meaningful opportunities for encountering God in the everyday. Ultimately I find Jewish music to be any music that, paraphrasing Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook, makes the old become new and the new become holy. — Josh Breitzer

INFLUENCES: Mozart, Simon & Garfunkel, James Taylor, John Denver, Joe Raposo, Fred Rogers, Billy Joel, Eliyahu Schleifer and Lawrence Avery.

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