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A HAZZAN or CHAZZAN (Hebrew : חַזָּן‎‎ ħazzān, Yiddish KHAZN Ladino HASSAN) is a Jewish
Jewish
musician, or precentor , trained in the vocal arts who helps lead the congregation in songful prayer . In English, this prayer-leader is often referred to as cantor , a term also used in Christianity .

CONTENTS

* 1 Shaliah tzibbur: the role of the hazzan * 2 Growing importance * 3 Qualifications * 4 Female cantors in non-Orthodox Judaism
Judaism

* 5 Professional status

* 5.1 Training

* 6 Golden age * 7 See also * 8 References * 9 External links

SHALIAH TZIBBUR: THE ROLE OF THE HAZZAN

The person leading the congregation in public prayers is called the shaliach tzibbur (Hebrew for "emissary of the congregation"), a ħazzān or cantor. Jewish
Jewish
law restricts the role to adult Jews. See also: Cantor
Cantor
in Reform Judaism
Judaism
. In theory, any lay person can be a sheliach tzibbur; most synagogue-attending Jews
Jews
will serve in this role every now and again. One who cannot or doesn't pronounce his words properly, including merging pharyngeals with glottals or uvulars, shouldn't be appointed unless no one else better is available. In practice, those with the best voice and the most knowledge of the prayers serve much more often. Ashkenazic
Ashkenazic
hazzanim (Hebrew plural of hazzan) are known to repeat words during prayer (although it's more proper to not repeat words); Yemenite sh'luchei tzibbur, on the other hand, will never repeat words.

There are many rules relating to how a cantor should lead services, but the idea of a cantor as a paid professional does not exist in classical rabbinic sources. Jewish prayer services are collected in a prayerbook known as the siddur .

GROWING IMPORTANCE

The office of the hazzan increased in importance with the centuries. As public worship was developed in the Geonic period, and as the knowledge of the Hebrew language
Hebrew language
declined, singing gradually superseded the didactic and hortatory element in the worship in the synagogue.

QUALIFICATIONS

Even in the oldest times the chief qualifications demanded of the hazzan, in addition to knowledge of Biblical and liturgical literature as well as the prayer motifs (known as "steiger"), were a pleasant voice and an artistic delivery; for the sake of these, many faults were willingly overlooked. The hazzan was required to possess a pleasing appearance, to be married, and to have a flowing beard. Sometimes, according to Isaac
Isaac
of Vienna (13th century), a young hazzan having only a slight growth of beard was tolerated. Maimonides
Maimonides
decided that the hazzan who recited the prayers on an ordinary Sabbath and on week-days need not possess an appearance pleasing to everybody; he might even have a reputation not wholly spotless, provided he was living a life morally free from reproach at the time of his appointment.

But all these moderations of the rule disappeared on holidays; then an especially worthy hazzan was demanded, one whose life was absolutely irreproachable, who was generally popular, and who was endowed with an expressive delivery. Even a person who had once litigated in a non- Jewish
Jewish
court, instead of to a Jewish
Jewish
court, in a disputed question could not act as hazzan on those days, unless he had previously done penance. However many authorities were lenient in this regard and as long as a cantor was "merutzeh l'kehal" desired by the congregation, he was permitted to lead the prayers even on the holiest of days.

Today, a hazzan, particularly in more formal (usually not Orthodox) synagogues, is likely to have academic credentials, most often a degree in music or in sacred music, sometimes a degree in music education or in Jewish
Jewish
religious education or a related discipline. The doctor of music degree is sometimes awarded to honour a hazzan.

FEMALE CANTORS IN NON-ORTHODOX JUDAISM

Although traditionally a hazzan was always a man, today a woman can be a hazzan (also called a cantor) in all types of Judaism
Judaism
except for Orthodox Judaism. Julie Rosewald , called “ Cantor
Cantor
Soprano” by her congregation, was America’s first female cantor (though she was born in Germany), serving San Francisco’s Temple Emanu-El from 1884 until 1893, although she was not ordained. Barbara Ostfeld became the first female cantor to be ordained in Reform Judaism
Judaism
in 1975, and Erica Lippitz and Marla Rosenfeld Barugel became the first female cantors in Conservative Judaism
Judaism
in 1987. The Cantors Assembly , a professional organization of cantors associated with Conservative Judaism, did not allow women to join until 1990. Sharon Hordes became the first cantor (female or otherwise) in Reconstructionist Judaism
Judaism
in 2002. Avitall Gerstetter , who lived in Germany, became the first female cantor in Jewish Renewal (and the first female cantor in Germany) in 2002. Susan Wehle became the first American female cantor in Jewish Renewal in 2006; however she died in 2009. The first American women to be ordained as cantors in Jewish Renewal after Susan Wehle's ordination were Michal Rubin and Abbe Lyons , both ordained on January 10, 2010. In 2001 Deborah
Deborah
Davis became the first cantor (female or otherwise) in Humanistic Judaism; however, Humanistic Judaism
Judaism
has since stopped graduating cantors.

In 2009 Tannoz Bahremand Foruzanfar , who was born in Iran, became the first Persian woman to be ordained as a cantor in the United States.

As of 2011, the Hebrew Union College- Jewish
Jewish
Institute of Religion , the main seminary for Reform Judaism, has ordained 208 women cantors.

PROFESSIONAL STATUS

The role of hazzanim as a respected full-time profession has become a reality in recent centuries. In the last two centuries Jews
Jews
in a number of European communities, notably Germany and Britain, came to view professionally trained hazzanim as clergy and the hazzan as the deputy rabbi. After the enlightenment, when European nations gave full citizenship and civil rights to Jews, professionally trained hazzanim were accepted by the secular governments as clergy in the same way that rabbis were accepted as clergy.

In an interesting turn of events, the United States government recognized cantors as the first Jewish
Jewish
clergy, even before rabbis were recognized—as a congregation could be organized and led by a committee of Jewish
Jewish
"laymen", who would not have the expertise in liturgy a hazzan would have, newly forming congregations in the late 19th and early 20th centuries sometimes hired a hazzan for a synagogue (and made sure that a kosher butcher was established in the neighborhood) for some time before setting about hiring a rabbi, seeing the hazzan (and the butcher) as a more immediate need. The hazzan therefore solemnized marriages and otherwise represented the congregation in the eyes of civil authorities.

In the United States, many hazzanim supplement their ministry by also earning certification as and working as mohels , for bris ceremonies.

In the United States there are three major organizations for professionally trained hazzanim, one from each of the major Jewish denominations.

* American Conference of Cantors —Reform Judaism
Judaism
* Cantors Assembly —Conservative Judaism
Judaism
* Cantorial Council of America—Orthodox Judaism
Judaism

TRAINING

Many members of the Cantors Assembly are trained at the H. L. Miller Cantorial School and College of Jewish
Jewish
Music at the Jewish
Jewish
Theological Seminary of America . Many members of the American Conference of Cantors are trained at the Debbie Friedman School of Sacred Music at Hebrew Union College
Hebrew Union College
Jewish
Jewish
Institute of Religion, School of Sacred Music (New York) Reform. Both of these programs offer a five-year training program. Members of the Cantorial Council can train at the Philip and Sarah
Sarah
Belz School of Jewish
Jewish
Music at Yeshiva University in New York City.

ALEPH, the movement for Jewish
Jewish
Renewal, includes a cantorial training program as part of its ordination program.

Full cantorial training is also offered by the Cantorial School of the Academy for Jewish
Jewish
Religion (California) in Los Angeles, the Cantorial Program at the similarly named Academy for Jewish
Jewish
Religion in New York, and the School of Jewish
Jewish
Music at Hebrew College . These institutions are unaffiliated with any particular Jewish
Jewish
denomination.

The curriculum for students in these programs generally include, but are not limited to:

* Hebrew: modern, Biblical (Torah), and liturgical (Siddur) * Nusach (liturgical tradition) * Laws and traditions pertaining to Jewish prayer service * History and content of the siddur * Music theory, sight-reading sheet music * Playing an instrument, usually a piano or guitar * Singing technique * Cantillation
Cantillation
—tropes for the liturgical chanting of biblical books * Choral conducting * Jewish
Jewish
history * Tanakh (Hebrew Bible, or Old Testament
Old Testament
) * Jewish music history * Pastoral care and counseling * Theology

GOLDEN AGE

The period between the two World Wars is often referred to as the "golden age" of hazzanut (cantorial performance). The greats include Zavel Kwartin (1874–1953), Moritz Henle
Moritz Henle
(1850–1925), Joseph "Yossele" Rosenblatt (1882–1933), Gershon Sirota (1874–1943), and Leib Glantz .

In the post–World War II period, prominent cantors were Moshe Koussevitzky , David Werdyger , Frank Birnbaum , Richard Tucker and Abraham Lopes Cardozo (1914–2006). Operatic tenor Jan Peerce , whose cantorial recordings were highly regarded, was never a cantor by profession but he often cantored during the high holidays .

Popular contemporary cantors include Shmuel Barzilai , Naftali Hershtik , Yitzchak Meir Helfgot , Chazzan Avraham Aharon Weingarten, Ari Klein, Yaakov Lemmer , Joseph Malovany , Benzion Miller , Jacob (Jack) Mendelson, Aaron Bensoussan, Alberto Mizrahi, Yaakov Yoseph Stark, Jochen (Yaacov) Fahlenkamp, and Eli Weinberg.

SEE ALSO

* History of religious Jewish music * Chazante * Rabbi
Rabbi
* Judaism
Judaism
* Siddur
Siddur
* Jewish
Jewish
services * Syrian Cantors * Academy for Jewish
Jewish
Religion (California) * Academy for Jewish
Jewish
Religion (New York) * The Reform Jewish
Jewish
Cantorate during the 19th Century * Cantors Assembly * Precentor * Succentor

Look up HAZZAN in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.

REFERENCES

* ^ Geoffrey Wigoder; Fred Skolnik; Shmuel Himelstein, eds. (2002). " Cantor
Cantor
and cantorial music". The New Encyclopedia of Judaism. New York University Press. ISBN 0-8147-9388-6 . * ^ A B "The Cantor". My Jewish
Jewish
Learning. Retrieved 2012-07-09. * ^ To Accompany A Chazzan: Choirs and Soloists - Past and Present, Rebbetzin Faigie Horowitz, Hamodia Inyan, September 23, 2014 (vol. xvii no. 828), p. 16-17: As an adult of 21, Reb Naftali Blaivas was the baal tefillah in a shul for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. Two years later, he began a forty-two-year stint as the baal tefillah for the Yamim Noraim in the shul of Rabbi
Rabbi
Mordechai Teitz, z"l, Chief Rabbi
Rabbi
of Elizabeth, New Jersey. "I was not a chazzan. My style was chazzanishe baal tefillah. Tefillah was paramount for Rav Teitz, not music. I remember him telling me firmly at the beginning, 'M'zogt nisht iber ken verter' ." * ^ See also Dalet Amot: Halachic Perspectives ( Rabbi
Rabbi
Ari N. Enkin, 2008), p. 6-7, where the author discusses excessive operatics and repetition of words by chazzanim and notes that Rabbi
Rabbi
Moshe Feinstein and most halachic authorities rule "that a chazzan should not repeat any words of the prayers." * ^ As can be heard in the audio file accompanying this page. * ^ Shulkhan Arukh , Orah Hayyim, 581 * ^ A B http://jwa.org/blog/Julie-Rosewald * ^ http://www.thejewishweek.com/news/short_takes/forgotten_woman_cantor_julie_rosewald_now_getting_her_due * ^ A B "Cantors: American Jewish
Jewish
Women Jewish
Jewish
Women\'s Archive". Jwa.org. Retrieved 2012-07-09. * ^ Goldman, Ari L. (September 19, 1990). "A Bar to Women as Cantors Is Lifted". The New York Times. * ^ " Cantor
Cantor
Sharon Hordes". Kenesethisrael.com. Retrieved 2012-07-09. * ^ "Cantorial/Hazzanut/Liturgical - CD Cantor
Cantor
Susan Wehle OB"M Songs of Healing & Hope J. Levine Books & Judaica ". Levinejudaica.com. 2005-07-26. Retrieved 2012-07-09. * ^ Haughney, Christine (February 15, 2009). "\'It\'s Not Even Six Degrees of Separation. It\'s One.\'". The New York Times. * ^ "Tikkun v\'Or, Ithaca, NY - Celebration in honor of Cantor
Cantor
Abbe Lyons". Tikkunvor.org. 2010-02-07. Retrieved 2012-07-09. * ^ "Contributions of Jewish
Jewish
Women to Music and Women to Jewish Music". JMWC. Retrieved 2012-07-09. * ^ " Cantor
Cantor
Tannoz Bahremand Forunzanfar; Academy for Jewish Religion, California". Ajrca.org. Retrieved August 10, 2013. * ^ "HUC-JIR: Statistics". Hebrew Union College
Hebrew Union College
-- Jewish
Jewish
Institute of Religion. Retrieved 2013-03-04. * ^ American Conference of Cantors * ^ Cantors Assembly * ^ Belz School of Jewish
Jewish
Music

EXTERNAL LINKS

* Jewish
Jewish
Encyclopedia

.