Welcome to the website of the European Cantors Association
Patrons: Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis; Cantor Naftali Herstik, Cantor Joseph Malovany, Cantor Asher Hainovitz
Announcing Our 15th Cantors Convention
Hannover, 6 - 11 November 2023
A gathering for all those who love the music of Jewish prayer
We are very excited to announce our next ECA Convention.
It will take place in the beautiful Villa Seligmann in Hannover from the evening of Monday 6th November 2023 to late night on Motzei Shabbat 11th November, after the Gala concert. We have outstanding presenters and a full programme with very special and historical firsts. There will be opportunities to sing, entertain us all and to take an active part in the programme.
Enjoy sessions with leading international cantors, a Shabbat of choral and cantorial beauty, daily minyanim, a tour of Jewish Hannover and an optional visit to Bergen Belsen.
Convention is again at the historic and beautiful Villa Seligmann, (pictured) the House for Jewish music and at Hannover synagogue.
Further details, including the registration form and where to direct enquiries are here.
After our very successful Budapest Convention, which has been nominated for The Hungarian Tourist Event of the Year Award, we are looking forward to bringing you our next offering.
We would like to know as soon as possible if you will be attending in order to accommodate those who want to take part. We look forward to hearing from you and seeing you in Hannover in November.
A review of our 14th Convention, in Budapest in November 2022, is here
Remembering Rabbi Cantor Michael Plaskow MBE
We were saddened to learn shortly before Pesach of the passing in Israel of Rabbi Cantor Michael Plaskow MBE, Emeritus Chazan of London's Woodside Park Synagogue, London and City of London Freeman.
Michael was a great and distinguished chazan, mohel and leader in both the Jewish and wider communities, later taking Semicha. He was at Woodside Park Synagogue for an amazing 43 years and a practising Mohel for 33 years, initiating some 16,000 babies.
We wish Michael's daughters Angela and Rosalind and his brother Stuart, Chayim Arukim.
Michael Plaskow was one of our stars in November 2021 in our 'Voice of the Cantor' series when he was interviewed by ECA Director,
Alex Klein. You can see that interview here on our YouTube Channel and listen here to the podcast version.
Why Do We Mumble Our Prayers?
David Aaronovitch in his UK Jewish Chronicle article of 15 December 2022 asks
‘why do we mumble our prayers?’
ECA Exec, Geraldine Auerbach, argues there has been no recognised or endorsed training for orthodox prayer leaders in the UK for decades; nor is there an agreed standard to attain. And even if there was a standard, she argues, there is virtually no hope of employment as a prayer-leader.
Read more of this here.
ECA's suggestion to UK United Synagogue to remedy the situation: "From Our Lips...".
Check out and subscribe to our YouTube Channel for a reprise on all our activity,
including the 21 programmes of 'Voice of the Cantor' published in 2020 - 2022.
Clips from our 14th Cantors Convention are also posted there.
Our Facebook; Twitter and Instagram pages are also regularly updated.
Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks' extolling value of Jewish Music
We have republished a video featuring late Chief Rabbi of the UK and the Commonwealth, Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks extolling the virtues of Jewish Music at the 25th Anniversary of the Jewish Music Institute in 2010.
The video is here.
"To me music is the most spiritual form of expression that exists Music was absolutely essential to Jewish spirituality" he says. "Words are the language of the mind – but music is the language of the soul".
He talks about nusach : "...you know exactly when and what kind of literature you are listening to, simply from listening to the music When we move from the secular to the spiritual – words take wings through music".
"How do we make Judaism live for a new generation – that answer is, we have to make it sing. If it has no music, no emotional contact, if there is no music – you can’t hand it on."
ECA was officially launched on 2 July 2012 at the 7th Annual European Cantors' Convention Manchester
UK 2 - 5 July 2012,
by Cantor Joseph Malovany of the 5th Avenue Synagogue New York.
Cantor Malovany is also Professor of Liturgical Music at Yeshiva University and co-Director of the
Moscow Academy for Liturgical Music.
Last Updated 1st June 2023