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Gratz College
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MUS 131 - Songs of My People

Throughout history, Jewish communities around the world have used music to express their values and to preserve their traditions. In this class, students will explore the diverse languages, texts and sounds that are part of Jewish culture, and discover the ways in which music has evolved in the wake of geographic location and historical circumstance. Special attention will be paid to the role and development of choral music in Jewish tradition, with particular focus on the repertoire selected for performance by HaZamir: The International Jewish High School Choir. Participants in this class will combine their rehearsal time in local HaZamir chapters with online study and special Forums devoted to discussion of the music and reflections on the experience of creating Jewish community through choral singing. Participation in this course is limited to high school juniors and seniors who are also currently members of HaZamir: The International Jewish High School Choir. Specific reference will be made to current and recently-past HaZamir repertoire; other examples will focus more generally on Jewish music for choirs.