Big in Sound and Joy – The Simcha Band!

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We may have been small in number but we were big in sound and joy. Just ask the audience who sang, danced and clapped to the rhythm of all the melodies.

Special thanks to Conductor Mark Weinstein, and band members: Elliot Lasiter, Jerilyn Margulies, Mike Tizhgarten, Howie Erichson, Andy Silikovitz, and Merrill Silver. Joining the band for the first time were Collin Brooks and Nathan Pendola.  We look forward to watching Collin (electric guitar) and Nathan (drums) grow up with the band.  We welcome and thank Dan Silver who came from NYC to make music with us.

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Pure Joy! – The Hanukkah Simcha Band!

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Today’s WELL column in The New York Times (12/20/16) talks about how running makes the brain work in surprising ways. Similarly, it says that “Playing a musical instrument, for instance, requires refining a variety of fine motor skills, while also engaging memory, attention, forward planning and many other executive functions of the brain. So it’s not surprising that past brain-scanning studies have found that expert musicians tend to have greater coordination between areas of the brain associated with different kinds of thinking, as well as sensory processing and motor control, than do people who have never picked up a bassoon or other instrument.”

The Times article forgot one important thing. Playing a musical instrument is pure joy (and some practice, too). The multi-generational Hanukkah Simcha Band proved this with its glorious sound at our community Hanukkah party on Sunday, Dec. 18. Whether you were playing, singing, dancing or listening to the gorgeous music, it was exhilarating. Continue reading

Guys and Graggers! – Purim Shpiel, 2016

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Come see “Guys and Graggers” during the Megillah-reading service on Erev Purim, Wednesday, March 23rd.

Based on the hit show “Guys and Dolls”, this shpiel was adapted for Purim by Craig Eichner, produced and edited by Lisa Pendola, and directed by Jennifer Moss. Continue reading

Hanukka Band Brings Special Light to Shomrei’s Annual Party

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Chanuka is the Festival of Light. We illustrated this with our beautiful chanukiyot burning brightly in the sanctuary at our annual holiday party. At Shomrei, Chanuka is also the holiday of great music played by our very own Simcha band. Maestro Mark Weinstein sets just the right tone balancing fun, learning and ultimately, making music together. That is no small task considering our multi-generational band with a wide range of skills and experience. Continue reading

The Windy Gragger: Purim Shpiel

It’s the Jazz Age of Shushan, when a king throws an endless party, a queen refuses a royal summons, an evil vizier hatches a nefarious plot, our hero and heroine struggle to save their people — and everyone wants to make the front page news! “The Windy Gragger” has all this and more (well, not much more). Set to the music of the Broadway show “Chicago,” this is the Purim story like you’ve never heard it before (unless you’ve seen the rehearsals, in which case you’ve sort of heard it before). Come see the one and only performance of “The Windy Gragger” on Purim evening, March 4, 2015.  The Windy Gragger will star (in alphabetical order): Craig Eichner, Yechiel Felder, Talia Fellus, Martin Hochbaum, Ann Lippel, Carney Mimms, Jennifer Moss, Lisa Pendola, Andy Silikovitz.

Here’s a complete Purim Schedule of Events and Services

Chanukah Simcha Band

Simchah BandIt was only the second night of Chanuka but the Simcha Band lit up the Shomrei Chanuka party as if it were the 8th night. The audience enjoyed listening and dancing to the music as much as the musicians enjoyed playing and singing.

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