A Great Moment in UK Cantorial History

This clip appears to be from the memorable 1989 London concert of Chazan Benjamin Muller with the Manchester Jewish Male Voice Choir singing an arrangement of Ribono Shel Olom by L Miller/S Alman/B Muller.


Posted by mancunian at 21/02/11 10:16:43
Thank you for posting. The ring B Muller used to have in his voice.... wow.
Posted by bluechazzan at 22/02/11 16:11:00
And remember - he was not miked in this recording - so the video hears what we heard.
This was the most remarkable voice. Mahogany, round and opulent from the centre down, with the most ringing and penetrating top I ever heard anywhere. But, because it was coupled with BM's mastery of coloratura, his deeply sincere chanting of the liturgy, together with a mystical type connection with the prayer (and in particular the works of YR), he is truly unique.
When I hear him chant YR's compositions, it is as if they have been written for him. So, too, did he put his own stamp on everything he sang.
Posted by kendal at 23/02/11 13:09:32
BM used to have one of the richest tenor voices I've ever heard (certainly for some tones); in opera and elsewhere.

That said, I would not say his coloratura was ever that good. It was always good enough, but I would not list it among his strenths.

I think you overdramatize his 'connection' with the prayer. What he has is that natural 'krechts' that is more prevalent in Hassidic circles that is unaffected and comes out on its own. It's rare that I've witnessed a cantorial performance in concert where the artist was deeply immersed in the 'recitative'. The hope is that that connection takes place in the synagogue. Among contemporary chazzanim, I've chiefly seen it during alive davening with Pinchas Cohen and Moshe Haschel.
Posted by bluechazzan at 23/02/11 16:54:41

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