Jacob Koppel Sandler

Composer and music director

Born in Belaya Tserkov, Ukraine. Immigrated to the US in 1888 where he worked in the Yiddish theater and was the choral director for several cantors. He composed several Jewish themed operettas, one of them featuring the famous song "Eli, Eli" (sometimes printed "Eili, Eili"). There is some dispute as to whether Sandler really composed it, others claiming it was originally a folk song.

d. 1931

Max Spicker

Conductor, composer and teacher

Born in Köngisberg, Germany, and immigrated to the US in 1882. After settling in New York, he worked as a conductor for the Beethoven Mannerchor, served as director and instructor at the Brooklyn Conservatory, was an instructor at the National Conservatory, and served choirmaster at Temple Emanuel (1898-1910). He also worked for the publisher G. Schirmer, where he edited many musical anthologies. Spicker has written music for the synagogue, as well as choral and orchestral works.


Shelomo Zalman Rivlin

Cantor, composer and Rabbi

Born in Jerusalem where he officiated as cantor at the Shirat Israel Synagogue for 60 years. He trained many of today's notable Israeli cantors, some of whom sang in the "Shirat Israel" cantor choir that was established by Rivlin. Through his compositions published in his Shirei Shlomohe tried to create a musical style that fuses the European and the Oriental traditions. 

Sources: Encyclopedia Judaica




Jacob Rappaport


Born in Telenesht, Bessarabia. As a child he studied with Zeidel Rovner, and started performing as a cantor at the age of 18. He immigrated to the United stated in 1920. There he held different cantorial positions, and devoted himself to composing, most notably cantorial recitatives.