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Joshua Nelson, Friday Night Services, Manhattan, NY, 17 Oct, 2008

The Prince of Kosher Gospel, Joshua Nelson, will perform during the 6p.m. Shabbat Services, Friday, October 17, 2008 at Congregation Rodeph Sholom, Manhattan. Cantor Rebecca Garfein, Senior Cantor of Congregation Rodeph Sholom along with Assistant Cantor, Shayna Peavey and the Rodeph Sholom Children’s Choir, will join Joshua Nelson in soulful song to kick off Rodeph Sholom’s annual Mitzvah Marathon Weekend.

The entire community is invited to join us. Congregation Rodeph Sholom is located at 7 W. 83rd Street off of Central Park West. For more information, please call 646-454-3030. For more information about our Mitzvah Marathon Weekend, please see our website www.rodephsholom.org

In the 17 years since Joshua Nelson first sang along with a Mahalia Jackson album he discovered in his grandparents' home when he was eight-years-old, he has spread the sheer joy of spiritual music to audiences from New Jersey to Jerusalem and throughout the world. Joshua, whose voice bears a remarkable resemblance to that of the late Ms. Jackson, has performed in concert halls, synagogues, churches, and at various outdoor venues, both solo and with such musical luminaries as Wynton Marsalis, Billy Preston, Aretha Franklin, and Stephanie Mills; Gospel greats Albertina Walker, the Barret Sisters, Hezekiah Walker, Kirk Franklin, Dottie Peoples, Dorothy Norwood, Vanessa Bell Armstrong, Reverend Timothy Wright, and Bobby Jones & New Life, the greatest Jewish Klezmer band in the world, The Klezmatics, and late jazz greats Cab Calloway and Dizzy Gillespie, among others. In 2004, Mr. Nelson appeared on the “The Oprah Winfrey Show”, alongside Jamie Fox. Mr. Nelson was named by Oprah as “The Next Big Thing,” performing “How I Got Over” and “Elijah Rock.” Oprah remarked, “I have never heard a voice like his, he literally brought the house down.”

Cantor Rebecca Garfein is the Senior Cantor of Congregation Rodeph Sholom and is the first female Cantor to hold this position in the history of the congregation.

Cantor Garfein has appeared in numerous recitals throughout the United States, Israel, and Europe and has two solo CD recordings, a live recording from the 1997 Jewish Festival in Berlin entitled, “Sacred Chants of the Contemporary Synagogue” and her first studio recording, “Golden Chants in America...Commemorating 350 years of Jewish Music, 1654-2004,” the first U.S. recording to feature Jewish music spanning 350 years of life in America.

Cantor Garfein graduated cum laude from Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music with a degree in vocal performance and opera. In 1993, she received her Master’s Degree in Sacred Music and Cantorial Investiture from the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR).

Cantor Shayna Peavey is the Assistant Cantor of Congregation Rodeph Sholom since 2007, having been invested by the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion that same year. Cantor Peavey grew up in Springfield, MO and graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a degree in Music Education.

Cantor Peavey wrote her master’s thesis about the music of the Ethiopian Jews as a result of her interest in world Jewry and her time spent in Israel during her Cantorial studies. While living in Jerusalem, she spent time researching the Ethiopian community and completed her thesis and subsequent recital, “I am Black and Beautiful, O Daughters of Jerusalem: The Development of the Music of the Ethiopian Jews here in New York.”

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