By COLlive reporter
The Council of Chabad Chazonim, which performs concerts celebrating the Jewish community’s rich musical heritage and vocal talent during the year, announced today that it will be holding a Chazonus Bootcamp.
The Bootcamp will enable chazonim and Baalei Tefillas to prepare for their work on the upcoming Yomim Noraim. The spirited, enjoyable program will involve regimens of vocal warm ups, reviewing nusach, learning new pieces, taking voice lessons and participating in the training program.
“Chabad houses should really take advantage of this opportunity and send their Chazonim/Baalei Tefillas to this program,” said Rabbi Simcha Backman, of Chabad of Glendale.
“There’s no comparison between before and after the program. It is well worth the small investment to have a Bal Tefila who is properly prepared. Your congregations will really appreciate the extra level of professionalism and polish.”
Dovid Babinet, director of the Council, who is usually involved in teaching private lessons and producing the Council’s performances, is leading the Bootcamp.
“Young Chazonim are mislead into believing that merely listening to recordings of nusach is enough to be thoroughly prepared,” said Babinet.
“It is worthwhile to invest in a small amount of training to insure that the Shul is happy with your work and to have the peace of mind that you are not causing permanent damage to your Voice. Plus, this is going to be a double zechus for everyone: You’ll be beautifying the mitzvah of leading the davening and adding to your own simchah at the same time.”
The Council is a training ground for Chazonim of many levels to learn and develop themselves. For much of the year they have been studying and participating in workshops and occasional public performances.
The Bootcamp will cover vocal technique, how to use one’s voice in a way that it will be powerful and so as not to run out after 10 minutes for davening and basic music training. The program is serious practice, but envisioned as a fun experience for all participants.
“A common problem people find is not knowing how high or low to start,” Babinet added. “With some basic knowledge of music you can avoid the stress of starting on the wrong note and hurting your voice or not being in the best range for your voice. We’ll have some lighter moments as well, where we can all laugh and learn while we improve.”
The program will cover Nusach, with a full review of the nusach for the entire high holidays davening, as well as Chazonus. The Bootcamp will also cover basic Chazonus pieces that are commonly used. These include Kwartin, Rosenblatt, Kosouvitzky There will also be a section on improving the ability to harmonize and sing together with other voices.
Participants will sing in a public recital for friends and family. Known guest Chazonim will come in to give advice and coaching to the participants.
Avrohom Bergstein stated about working with Babinet. “Last year, I went for some lessons before Rosh Hashanah and the difference was amazing. It was a blast, honestly, but it was definitely worth the time. I always have a tough time not losing my voice and not only did I not lose my voice but I was able to sing louder and higher with less effort! The Shul also saw the huge difference and doubled my salary.”
The Bootcamp will take place starting July 19 running through September in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. For more information and to register, visit Chabadchazonim.com or call 718.772.3543.