Boaz Tarsi

Dr. Boaz Tarsi is associate professor of music at The Jewish Theological Seminary. His compositions for chamber ensembles, orchestra, chorus, voice, and solo instruments have been performed and broadcast throughout the United States, Israel, and Europe, and hosted by such institutions and performers as the New York Chamber Music Society, Bruno Walter Auditorium at Lincoln Center, the Kiev Philharmonic, the 92nd Street Y, Merkin Hall, Cristofori Hall in Amsterdam, the Michelstadt Festival in Germany, Gary Karr, the Israeli Sinfonietta Beer-Sheva, the Jerusalem Theater, Tel Aviv Museum, the American Jewish Music Society, the Jewish Museum in Philadelphia, San Diego Jewish Art Festival, Musicians Accord, The Kitchen, Musica Mundana, and the Adonai Foundation concert series in New York City. His liturgical settings and Hebrew art songs are often performed in the United States and Israel.

His piece "Concert Aria" for soprano and orchestra was recorded by the Kiev Philharmonic and released on a CD in ERM Media's series "Masterworks of the New Era," distributed by Naxos. Listen to the JTS "Concert Aria" podcast. His setting for Ashrey Ha'ish (published by Transcontinental Music Publication) was released in Berlin on the CD "Cantorial Highlights of the Synagogue: Meisterwerke der Synagogenmusik des 19. und 20. Jahrhunderts."

Dr. Tarsi's main research area is the theory of Ashkenazi liturgical music, on which he has presented papers and lectured at academic conferences internationally. He earned his doctorate at Cornell University.

He has been extensively involved with the Milken Foundation Archive Jewish music recording project as a coach, language consultant, and supervisor throughout the United States and Europe, and has also contributed guest essays on Mark Lavri, Arnold Schoenberg, and Yehezkel Braun for this project.

As a classically trained baritone, he has been active in opera, oratorio, concerts, recitals, and cantorial engagements and synagogue work in the United States, Europe, and Israel.

Published Works

"Music Theory as an Expression of Musical and Extra-Musical Views Reflected in Leib Glantz's Liturgical Settings," Leib Glantz: The Man Who Spoke To God, Jerry Glantz, ed., Tel Aviv: The Tel Aviv Institute for Jewish Liturgical Music, 2008.

"On a Particular Case of Tonal, Modal, and Motivic Components in Sources for Liturgical Music of East and West European Origins," Iggud: Selected Essays in Jewish Music, 2007.

"Congregational Singing as a Norm of Performance within the Modal Framework of Ashkenazi Liturgical Music," Journal of Synagogue Music, 2005.

"On the Placement of Hebrew Accents: Correct, Hyper-Correct, Necessary and Unnecessary Adjustments of Hebrew Accentuation in the Synagogue: The Musical Considerations," Journal of Synagogue Music, 2003.

"Lower Extension of the Minor Scale in Ashkenazi Prayer Music," Indiana Theory Review, 2002.

"Voices in the Sanctuary: Musical Practices of the American Synagogue," Conservative Judaism, 2002.

"Observations on Practices of Nusach in America," Asian Music, 2002.

"Toward a Clearer Definition of the Magen Avot Mode," Musica Judaica, 2001–2002.

"Manifestations of Arnold Schoenberg's Abstract Versus Concrete Dichotomy," Modern Judaism, 2001.

"The Adonai Malach Mode in Ashkenazi Prayer Music: the Problem Stated and a Proposed Outlook Based on Musical Characteristics," Proceedings of the Thirteenth World Congress of Jewish Studies, 2001.

"Two Hebrew Songs: 'Ma Tir'ash Avi' and 'Yarad Ha'ish el Hamidbar' for voice and piano," Transcontinental Music Publications, 2002. (music)

"Ashrey Ha'ish for voice and piano," Transcontinental Music Publications, 1993. (music)

"Hashkivenu for voice and piano," Journal of Synagogue Music, 1992. (music)

"Moses and Aaron as a Reflection of Arnold Schoenberg's Spiritual Quest," Musica Judaica, 1992.

"Tonality and Motivic Interrelationships in the Performance Practice of Nusach," Journal of Synagogue Music, 1991.

"George Rochberg: The Composer Who Returned to Tonality," Music in Time, 1983–84.

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