Founded in 1969, the Zamir Chorale of Boston’s mission is to serve as “a musical and educational organization dedicated to raising awareness of the breadth and beauty of Jewish culture through performances, recordings, symposia, publications, and musical commissions.” Led by Founder and Artistic Director Joshua Jacobson, the Chorale comprises experienced volunteer singers who perform music spanning thousands of years, four continents, and a variety of styles, both classical and popular. Zamir’s repertoire includes Jewish liturgical pieces, major classical works, music of the Holocaust, newly commissioned compositions, and Israeli, Yiddish, and Ladino folksongs. Zamir’s music is enjoyed by people of all ages, religions and races. Concerts can be designed to meet the special requirements and always provide an educational component.
In addition to enjoying a devoted following in the Greater Boston area, Zamir has achieved a far-reaching reputation through its 21 recordings and frequent tours throughout the United States, as well as in Israel and Europe. The documentary film, Zamir: Jewish Voices Return to Poland, has been shown across the country on public television stations. In January 2006, Zamir was invited to perform at the United Nations General Assembly for the first International Day to Commemorate Victims of the Holocaust.
An essential component of Zamir’s mission is to develop future leaders in Jewish choral music. Zamir mentors other Jewish community choruses through joint rehearsals and performances.
Dr. Joshua Jacobson is one of the world’s leading authorities on Jewish choral music. He is Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities at Northeastern University and Visiting Professor of Jewish Music at Hebrew College. A sought-after scholar and lecturer, his many arrangements, editions, and compositions are performed worldwide. His book, Chanting the Hebrew Bible: The Art of Cantillation (Jewish Publication Society, 2002), is considered the definitive source in the field. Zamir concerts are known for being highly entertaining, thanks to Dr. Jacobson’s colorful programming and his illuminating commentary from the stage.
Letters from Composers to the Zamir Chorale of Boston
“Your concert was in the first rank of choral experiences that have enthralled me for beauty of tone, expression, accuracy of pitch, diction and spiritual significance. Your performance of ‘The Peaceable Kingdom’ was second to none.”
— Randall Thompson
“Above all, I want to congratulate you on the wonderful singing. The Zamir Chorale is a really first-rate group, as Iíve always known, but still I was in awe of the marvelous phrasing and high musicality throughout.”
— Kirke Meecham
“I was so pleased and impressed with the reading of my piece. The choral sound was so fine, and the way you shaped the lines was eminently satisfying.”
— Simon Sargon
“The performance of my ‘Even When God Is Silent’ is very beautiful and moving. Zamir is a truly outstanding ensemble.”
— Michael Horvit
“Your performance is beautiful! Wow!”
— Gerald Cohen