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First Salamone Rossi Festival Promotes Jewish Culture
and Identity Through a Common Chord: Music

by Dr. Marsha Bryan Edelman for Vocal Area Network
Posted October 25, 2002

For the first time, a celebration of the music of Italian Renaissance Composer Salamone Rossi (1570-1628) will be presented as a two-day festival in New York City, November 10-11, 2002. The Festival is designed to create an in-depth musical experience of the genius of Salamone Rossi, the prominent Jewish composer who introduced the choral singing of sacred Hebrew texts, among other innovations. The Salamone Rossi Festival was conceived by Matthew Lazar (photo left), founder and director of the Zamir Choral Foundation to foster Jewish culture and identity through music. Mr. Lazar is considered the leading force of the Jewish choral movement in the US. He has worked with maestros Leonard Bernstein, Zubin Mehta, Carlo Maria Giulini, Daniel Barenboim and others.

“The Zamir Choral Foundation aims to promote Jewish commitment through choral singing by building a strong sense of community among professional and amateur singers who are multi-generational and inter-denominational,” says Mr. Lazar. By broadening the Jewish cultural experience, Zamir aims to bring age-old Jewish tradition into modern focus.”

The Salamone Rossi Festival is highlighted by a perfor