Synagogue 102 Program to Explore MUSIC IN JEWISH WORSHIP With Cantor Benjie Ellen Schiller

Friday, January 1, 1999

LOS ANGELES -- Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, in conjunction with Temple Emanuel of Beverly Hills, will present "Sacred Sounds: An evening of song exploring the vitality, importance and evolution of music in Jewish worship and the synagogue," with special guest,Cantor Benjie Ellen Schiller, Associate Professor of Cantorial Arts, HUC-JIR, School of Sacred Music, on Sunday, February 7, from 7:00 to 9:00 pm. The "Sacred Sounds" program is part of HUC-JIR's Synagogue 102 project.

Synagogue 102 is a new educational and support program for the Los Angeles School of the College-Institute.

"Cantor Benjie Schiller is a renowned cantor and composer with an incredible voice and vision to share with those interested in use of music in Jewish worship. We are fortunate to have the benefit of her knowledge and experience at HUC-JIR's first Synagogue 102 program of the year," said Dr. Lewis Barth, Dean, HUC-JIR, Los Angeles School.

Supporters of Synagogue 102 donate an annual contribution of $1,000 to "name a chair" in the Walter Hilborn Synagogue at HUC-JIR's Los Angeles School. The proceeds will be used to bring world-renowned leaders in the field of liturgical arts to the College-Institute to enhance the training of HUC-JIR students in areas such as the creation and leadership of religious services.

"Sacred Sounds" is the first in a four-part series for Synagogue 102 featuring renowned liturgists, poets, artists and theorists exploring the components that when united create the worship experience in the synagogue. The other programs will include "Sacred Symbols," examining the evolution and use of ritual art in the synagogue experience; "Sacred Statements," encompassing the history of liturgy; and "Sacred Spaces," exploring the transformation of sites into spiritual, sacred spaces.

Cantor Benjie Ellen Schiller is Associate Professor of Cantorial Arts in the School of Sacred Music at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in New York. Her work involves training cantorial students to bridge the gap between performance and spiritual leadership. She is also a nationally-known composer. Her work includes Life Song Cycle, a series of pieces for Jewish life passage ceremonies; Halleluhu, a multi-rhythmic setting of Psalm 150; V'ye'etayu; and Grace. Cantor Schiller's recordings of musical cassettes include the UAHC's Come Let Us Welcome the Sabbath, and she is a featured cantor in Yamim Noraim, a 1995 CD recording of High Holy Day music. Cantor Schiller was invested as a cantor and received her masters degree from the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 1987.

The "Sacred Sounds" program is free to the public. For information on Synagogue 102 and to make reservations, please call Corey Slavin at 213/749-3424.


Founded in 1875, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion is North America's first institution of higher Jewish education and the academic, spiritual, and professional leadership development center of Reform Judaism. HUC-JIR educates men and women for service to North American and world Jewry as rabbis, cantors, educators, and nonprofit management professionals, and offers graduate programs to scholars and clergy of all faiths. With centers of learning in Cincinnati, Jerusalem, Los Angeles, and New York, HUC-JIR's scholarly resources comprise the renowned Klau Library, the American Jewish Archives, research institutes and centers, and academic publications. In partnership with the Union for Reform Judaism and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, HUC-JIR sustains the Reform Movement's congregations and professional and lay leaders. HUC-JIR's campuses invite the community to cultural and educational programs illuminating Jewish heritage and fostering interfaith and multiethnic understanding. www.huc.edu