WORKING & PRESENTING
"Although, as a Cantor I work in a Jewish environment, I am involved with a lot of interfaith work. The Usdan commission helped me to imagine new ways of using Jewish music and traditions outside of an exclusively Jewish context."
– Cantor Randall Schloss
CANTOR RANDALL SCHLOSS
For the last several years, Usdan’s prestigious music program has included the contributions and compositions of Cantor Randall Schloss. Stemming from an interest in the creation and presentation of work that -- like Usdan itself--draws on Jewish values while highlighting similar values in other traditions, Usdan commissioned to Cantor Schloss write and work with students to perform a an original piece.
Using a unique blend of styles, Cantor Schloss' music aims to both engage both the young singers and the listeners in an exploration of what it is to have faith, commitment and virtue, inspired by the Jewish, and universal, values on which Usdan was founded.
Part of a performance of songs of welcome from many traditions, Cantor Randall Schloss’ first songs for Usdan: “L’cha N’ran’na” (which means “Let’s Sing”) and “Hallelujah.” All were presented on the McKinley Amphitheater by Junior and Senior Chorus members along with other songs including Beach Boys pop music and Latino heritage.
Cantor Schloss returned to camp to deepen the conversation about faith, virtue, art and community. The work premiered in 2018, as part of Usdan’s 50th Anniversary season. In the piece, Usdan choral students took the stage and used music to examine the expression and support of social justice issues through art.