For three decades under the leadership of Founding Rabbi Marc Schneier, the Hampton Synagogue has grown to be among the brightest lights in America’s Jewish community, and starting Friday, May 24, their spiritual message and stirring music will be available to more than 40 million homes across the nation. The Westhampton Beach synagogue’s acclaimed Friday evening Kabbalat Shabbat services began broadcasting nationally on Jewish Broadcasting Service (JBS) television stations from 7–7:35 p.m. on Friday evening of Memorial Day weekend and they will continue airing every Friday through Labor Day weekend.
Hampton Synagogue’s cantor, Netanel Hershtik, who has performed at NYC’s Lincoln Center, Washington D.C.’s Kennedy Center and the London Opera House, to name just a few highlights, is “one of the leading cantors of our generation,” Schneier explains, adding, “His concerts are in great demand all over the world.” Additionally, the rabbi says, “Our choir is one of the preeminent choirs in the Jewish world.”
Each summer, “Hundreds and hundreds come from Manhattan to Montauk, from Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day weekend, come to Hampton Synagogue to experience this unique and extraordinary worship,” Schneier says. “I can state unequivocally that Hamptons Synagogue has become the summer destination for the American Jewish community.”
Now, with the JBS broadcast, it will be possible for the thousands unable to attend in person to feel a part of this experience, which the rabbi calls “transformative and spiritually uplifting,” pointing out, “The Shabbat itself is a respite from daily routines and pressures.”
At these services, and in the broadcast, Hampton Synagogue’s Maestro Izchak Haimov conducts while Hershtik’s voice is answered and accompanied by the choir.
“Cantorial music has the ability to unlock spirituality in Jews who might not otherwise come into a synagogue. If through the beautiful voices of our chazan and choir we can reach those Jews and ignite a spark in their engagement of Shabbat, we’ve done something very significant. That is one of the goals of this program,” Schneier, a frequent guest on JBS 24/7 schedule of programs, adds about the upcoming broadcast. “Jewish Broadcasting Service president and executive producer Rabbi Marc Golub is a great fan and admirer of my work, and of the Hampton Synagogue,” Schneier says.
“The Hampton Synagogue is world renowned for its magnificent liturgical experience led by Cantor Netanel Hershtik along with Maestro Izchak Haimov and the synagogue’s choir,” Golub says. “We’re thrilled to broadcast their Kabbalat Shabbat service from coast to coast.”
JBS is one of the country’s largest Jewish television networks. It is available throughout North America via DirecTV, Verizon Fios, RSN, Google Fiber, Spectrum, Roku and other regional providers. In New York City and the Hamptons, JBS can be found on channel 388 on DirecTV, 798 on FIOS, 138 on Optimum, 269 on RCN and 219 on Spectrum, as well as Roku and jbstv.org.
“All you have to do is turn on your television at 7 p.m. [on Friday]…before sunset when we usher in the Shabbat,” Schneier says. “People are enamored of the Hamptons’ physical beauty, and we’re going to give people a taste of its spiritual beauty as well.”
For more information on the Hampton Synagogue (154 Sunset Avenue, Westhampton Beach), visit thehamptonsynagogue.org.