Welcome Home: The Sounds of Anshe Emet


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Here at Anshe Emet, the music of our Jewish heritage has always played a central role in our communal identity. Much like Torah itself, Jewish music is deeply rooted in tradition and simultaneously, is a living, breathing, evolving art form with many diverse influences. My beloved predecessor, Hazzan Alberto Mizrahi, imbued Anshe Emet with the vibrant music of the Sephardic tradition, while also serving as a living embodiment of the golden era of our cantorial music tradition. His predecessor, Cantor Moses J. Silverman, was a prolific composer who created Jewish cantorial music that has been heard in our walls for over seven decades. Today, as your Cantor, I am proud to continue this tradition of musical innovation. Through the nine pieces featured on this album, our hope is that you will experience prayerful moments of joy, presence of mind, connection, and rootedness in the beauty of our Jewish heritage. 

This project was a true team effort from conception. Deepest gratitude to Executive Director, Mimi Weisberg, for overseeing all aspects of this album’s creation, and to Brian Schmidt for the production of this stunning booklet. You will hear the familiar, beautiful voices and compositions of Hazzan Liz Berke and Todd Kessler as well as colleagues from the Chicagoland area who added their talents to this album. Many thanks to our wonderful Shabbat Band for their musicianship and camaraderie, and to our generous donors for making all of this possible.

I want to express my deepest gratitude to Rabbi Michael S. Siegel, to whom this album is dedicated in honor of his 40 years of service to this community. Rabbi Siegel has been the throughline in Anshe Emet’s musical life, having served with each of the Senior Cantors during his tenure. Thank you Rabbi, for your devotion to this aspect of our tradition, and Mazal Tov to us all for reaching this day alongside you.

From all of us here at Anshe Emet Synagogue, we are proud to say that Jewish music is alive and well, and belongs to all of us! 

Welcome home.

Cantor Rachel Brook