On Wednesday, April 3, SAR HS was proud to host the annual Nashir Choral Festival. More than 150 students representing the choirs of North Shore Hebrew Academy, The Yeshivah of Flatbush, Ramaz Upper School and The Abraham Joshua Heschel High School, joined the SAR choir for a day of singing and learning.
The day began with a group sing led by Nick Page, renowned choir director. Afterwards, students were treated to a variety of workshops led by Nick Page, Mordy Weinstein and Dr. Samuel Torjman Thomas. Mordy Weinstein, of Six13, taught the students how to sing and arrange music for a cappella choirs. Nick Page led a workshop focusing on the music making style of Bobby McFerrin and Dr. Thomas led a workshop that focused on the beauty of Arabic music.
At the end of the day there was a concert for the whole school given by the participating choirs. For the concert’s grand finale, all the choirs came together to perform the song “Barechu” by Salamone Rossi. Rossi, a 16th century Jewish Italian composer was most famous for his collection of trio sonatas. He also composed a stunning collection of prayer and Psalm settings titled, Hashirim Asher L’Shlomo. “Barechu,” a setting of the introduction to Shema for three voices, contains some of his most exquisite writing. Singing this glorious music connected all the high school singers with the rich choral tradition of the past and was a most fitting way to conclude an exciting and uplifting day.