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Laurie Rappeport

Laurie Rappeport lives in Safed, Israel. She teaches about Israel and Judaism online to day school and afternoon school students in North America and is involved in Safed tourism. She has studied Safed's history as a refuge for Jews and kabbalists who fled the Spanish and Portuguese Inquisitions and this has fueled her interest in the history of the first Jews in Colonial United States.


Musical Liturgy and Traditions of Colonial American Jews

Contributed on: 03 Mar 2014 by Laurie Rappeport |

Early American Jewry’s liturgies and rituals were conducted in a western Sephardi tradition which had developed in the late 16th and early 17th centuries in Amsterdam. Although most of the members of the first American Jewish communities were of Spanish and Portuguese origins, their worship evolved in the style of the Dutch Sepharadim. These oral transmissions led to adaptations and variations but Sephardi ḥazzanim (cantors) succeeded in passing their repertoire down to succeeding generations. These tunes are still identified with the American Sephardi tradition. . . .

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