It was during his American period that Dessau accepted a commission from Cantor David Putterman for original settings of Bar’khu and Shma yisra’el forone of the annual Sabbath eve services of new music at the Park Avenue Synagogue in New York (also included in that service were works by Alexandre Gretchenoff, Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco, Hugo Chaim Adler, and Max Helfman). Both compositions astutely preserve the spirit of proclamation and the emphasis on unity contained in those liturgical texts. Following their premiere in 1943, they were included again at the fourth annual service in 1946, which also featured—among other commissions—the world premiere of Kurt Weill’s setting of the kiddush.
Sung in Hebrew
Worshiped be Adonai, the Lord, to whom all praise is due.
Worshiped be Adonai, the Lord, who is to be worshipped for all eternity. Amen.
Listen, Israel! The Lord is our God.
The Lord is the only God—His unity is His essence.
Praised and worshiped be His Name whose glorious Kingdom is forever and ever.
Publisher: Maxim Dessau
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