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Sounds of Faith Concert Builds Bridges Through Music

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Sounds of Faith Concert flyer
(Image by Anshe Emet Synagogue website/Harran Foundation website)
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12th Annual Dr. Arnold H. Kaplan Concert:  Sounds of Faith:  Echoes of a Living Tradition: 

Jews ~ Christians ~ Muslims - Sunday, April 6, 2014

My guest today is Joyce Leviton Asher, co-chair of the upcoming 12th Annual Dr. Arnold H. Kaplan Concert, Sounds of Faith.

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Joan Brunwasser: Welcome to OpEdNews, Joyce. I'd never heard of this concert. Please tell us about it.

Joyce L. Asher: The Dr. Arnold H. Kaplan Concert - Sounds of Faith will be at Anshe Emet Synagogue on Sunday, April 6, from 3-5 PM. We are bringing together people of faith for an afternoon of music - the members of the Abrahamic tradition - Jews, Christians and Muslims - will hear music and sound.

I am especially excited to be the co-chair of this concert because I believe that bringing people of different religions and cultures together bridges understanding.  This summer, I was very upset with the violence in Chicago that captured news headlines.  I know that the violence represents a very small part of the population of Chicago.

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The real Chicago will be at Anshe Emet Synagogue on April 6th - those who are interested in forging common bonds and respecting each other's faith practices.

When Cantor Alberto Mizrahi asked Carol Mackoff and me to co-chair the concert we were both excited to do so. We want to create an afternoon for a diverse audience, listening and understanding we are all part of the same humanity.

Carol, another member of Anshe Emet Synagogue, Shakeela Hassan, the founder of the concept of Sounds of Faith and I have made calls and visits to diverse area houses of worship.  We want to create the personal invitation and connection for members of the three faith groups to share a unique opportunity.

JB: Who is or was Dr. Kaplan and why is his name associated with this event?

JLA: Dr. Arnold H. Kaplan was a surgeon at Thorek Community Hospital,  He had the reputation of working endless hours performing surgeries - never caring if he was paid or not, only interested in helping his patients.  He died in 2001;  his only family were two nieces.

He was a member of Anshe Emet Synagogue, and cantorial music was important to him.  He left a considerable sum of money to Anshe Emet.  The Cantorial Chair is named for him, and for the past 11 years,  a concert is held in his memory at Anshe Emet.

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JB: When did a cantorial concert morph into a more community-wide event? How and when did that change come about?

JLA: Carol Mackoff, co-chair. and I were excited to be asked to head the committee.  We loved the idea of the three Abrahamic faiths coming together and decided we would have the audience be diverse.  We both have many friends and contacts around the city of Chicago and with Shakeela Hassan of the Harran Foundation, we began to call our network and ask them and their congregants to join in the concert audience.

And then, Anshe Emet Synagogue had a wonderful day in honor of Martin Luther King in February.

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Joan Brunwasser is a co-founder of Citizens for Election Reform (CER) which since 2005 existed for the sole purpose of raising the public awareness of the critical need for election reform. Our goal: to restore fair, accurate, transparent, secure elections where votes are cast in private and counted in public. Because the problems with electronic (computerized) voting systems include a lack of (more...)

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