Monday, August 31, 2009

תקעו בחדש שופר

My father ז''ל was Baal Tokeah in Breuer's from 1958 until he retired in 1987. He was well known for his mastery of the more challenging "yekkish" teruohs, which involve manipulation and control of the diaphragm, as opposed to the tongue. To my mind, these teruohs sound more like actual sobbing than the traditional ones.

I do not have any sound recordings of my father's talents, but if any of his students who read this blog are in possession of such a thing, you know where to find me ;).

I have long maintained though, that every shofar has a "voice" and when my son Michael blows my father's preferred shofar in the same manner in which he was taught - and if I close my eyes, I am transported back in time.


Staying Afloat said...

Thank you. Being that I don't get to shul to hear the Elul blasts, that put me in a right frame of mind.

May you continue to experience nachas through the generations.

ProfK said...

I'm guessing that you are as much of a sentimentalist (raving here) as I am. I put a lot of stock in the "family mesora." My son also blows my father's shofar and it's amazing how magically and quickly I am transported to being 18 again, listening to my Tate blow through his einekal's efforts.

Gavi said...

Of interest to the daughter/mother of a ba'al toke'ah:

Michoel Kernberg of KAYJ has done all us wannabe-yekkes a great thing by posting up his recordings of the teki'os as KAYJ's website. I think the link is

[I daven at a shul which is nominally nusach lita but is full of yekkes, and we therefore do some yekkish minhogim.]

G6 said...

Do they blow these teruos in your shul?
It is so important to preserve one's mesorah, both personally as well as communally.
KAYJ has done a wonderful thing by taking pride in and seeking to continue the traditions.

G6 said...

My thanks to Rafi G over at Life in Israel for linking to this post.
Go check out some of his other interesting links.

Gavi said...

As a matter of fact, they DO blow the teru'oh like this in our shul.

I completely agree about the importance of keeping one's mesorah – I think that many of the problems that we face as a faith community with regard to tefilla and synagogue life would be best addressed by returning to the old tried-and-true minhagim (leaving alone the fact that many of them, like saying piyyutim, are clear-cut halachic requirements!)

About the only thing that is keeping me from moving to one of the communities that keep minhag ashkenaz hamuvhak is the fact that they all seem to be located in places where the cost of living is astronomically high (Yerushalayim, Bnai Brak, NYC, London, Zurich, etc.). Couple that with the overall "shift to the right" that will place me with my TIDE/TuM haskafos outside the pale, and I think I am stuck with visiting these places when I can...