| History in short…|
| In 1984 a meeting was called by the late Dr Maurice Jaffee, the founder and initiator of the Jerusalem Great Synagogue. The purpose of the meeting was the need to revive the then “dying” cantorial art and to encourage young people to study the proper “Nusach Hatefillah”. Present at this meeting were cantor Moshe Stern, Cantor Naftali Herstik, Maestro Eli Jaffee, and Dr. Zvi Talmon. Dr Jaffee put it bluntly:” if you don’t do it now, the whole beautiful art of Chazzanut is doomed and a terrible void will mar the Jewish culture”. It was decided there and then to form a cantorial school in Hechal Shlomo. |
In 1987, as a consequence of the school’s success and rising of its reputation, the school was approached by the mayor of Tel Aviv, Mr Shlomo Lahat, and by Mr Chaim Wiener, founder of the Gila and Chaim Wiener Foundation for the enhancement of cantorial art and ASACA, to fulfill the dream of the late David Koussevitzky and establish the cantorial school in Tel Aviv. Forces were joined with Hecahl Shlomo and the Jerusalem Great Synagogue and the Israeli school for cantorial art was formed under the directorship of Maestro Eli Jaffee. The school became a success story, reviving the Jewish Cultural scene in Tel Aviv.
The Gulf War of 1991 and other issues saw the reopening of the cantorial school under the auspices of the municipality of Greater Tel Aviv and the Tel Aviv Cultural Foundation, due to the relentless efforts of Mr Lahat, then Mayor of Tel Aviv. Dr David Alexander became administrative director and Mr Joel Bloch served as his deputy. Cantor Naftali Herstik became the Artistic Director of the school.
The urgent need for a permanent home for the school was answered by the pledge made by the Brodt family and the Tel Aviv Foundation to build a center which will serve this purpose, as well as serving as a center of Jewish culture. Naftali Herstik, by then General Director of the Tel Aviv Cantorial Institute, navigated this project through tireless work to see its fruition.
Today, the impressive achievements of the Tel Aviv Cantorial Institute make it the lodestone of the traditional cantorial world, a beacon to communities the world over who seek the service of its graduates and students.