Beth El Temple Music


Cantor Joseph Ness

Ness 2016Cantor Ness has composed over 935 compositions spanning both the liturgical and concert genres. He has been commissioned by major musical figures such as Lukas Foss and Fred Sherry, and he continues to compose and arrange for leading hazzanim. Ness has collaborated with many orchestras and ensembles including the Brooklyn Philharmonic, Los Angeles Jewish Symphony, Manchester Orchestra (England), American Symphony Orchestra, Jerusalem Great Synagogue Choir, the Group for Contemporary Music, and The Washington Festival Orchestra.  He has conducted several choral-orchestral masterpieces such as The German Requiem (Brahms), The Symphony of Psalms (Stravinsky), Choral Fantasy (Beethoven), and Elijah (Mendelssohn), in addition to a wide variety of orchestral and chamber instrumental music.  Because of Cantor Ness’ creative programming and noteworthy performances, Beth El Temple is a three-time winner of The National Solomon Schechter Award for Excellence in the Performing Arts. As part of a series of musical interpretations of biblical stories, he composed Jacob’s Ladder; The Akedah, performed in 2005; and Sarah & Hagar, premiered at The University of Hartford, in 2006.  Ness’s outstanding liturgical service for women’s choir premiered at the Cantor’s Assembly in Toronto, Canada, in 2011.  In June, 2012, he was honored for his 20th Anniversary at Beth El Temple.  Cantor Ness presents several dynamic lectures and inspiring concerts throughout the year.

More information about the Cantor

Performers for June 11, 2017

Cantor Joseph Ness, Conductor

Tamila Azadaliyeva, piano
Symphony #7 in A major Op. 92
Ludwig van Beethoven

TAMILA A use this one
Originally from Uzbekistan, Tamila came to the United States to study with Oxana Yablonskaya at the University of Hartford Hartt School, where she received her Graduate Professional Diploma and then her Master’s degree the following year, while studying with Luiz de Moura Castro.

Tamila has performed as a soloist and chamber musician in the United States, Italy, Spain, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan. She has been guest soloist with several orchestras including the Hartford Symphony Orchestra. Here, at Beth El, Tamila has performed Stravinsky Concerto for Piano and Winds, Franck Symphonic Variations For Piano and Orchestra, Bach D minor Concerto, Mozart Double Concerto (with Margarita Nuller) and Schumann Concerto in A-minor, Op.54.

Among her many awards are First Prize in the Connecticut State Young Artists’ Piano Competition; Third Prize in the  International New England Chamber Music Competition in Boston, Massachusetts, the Piano Duo Prize at the FORUM Internacional de Musica Barcelona Ciutat, and a Finalist’s Diploma in the International Competition in Bologna, Italy.

An avid chamber musician, Tamila performs as a member of Clara Piano Trio and also as a duo with her partner, cellist Peter Dzialo. Tamila and Peter recorded two albums on the LPR label,  which feature works for cello and piano by Schubert, Haydn, Popper, Bach-Kodaly and the never before recorded cello sonata by Rhene-Baton.

In addition to performing, Tamila teaches piano and chamber music at Loomis Chaffey School and Hartt Community Division and maintains a private studio in West Hartford.

Cantor Lauren Phillips, Soprano

Cantor Lauren Phillips joined Congregation Beth Israel in July of 2016. She comes to us from Congregation Sinai in Milwaukee, Wisconsin where she served as its Cantor for the past three years. While at Congregation Sinai, she founded an award-winning “Sinai in the City” program for young professionals and developed “Itsy Bitsy Sinai,” a program for children under four and their families. She has a strong background in community engagement and congregational work with all age groups. Cantor Phillips was ordained by the Debbie Friedman School of Sacred Music at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 2013. She completed undergraduate studies at Tufts University and earned a Master’s Degree in Vocal Performance at The Boston Conservatory.

Event: The Israel of Things – Sunday June 5, 2016 – 7pm

Israeli vocalist Gòn Halevi – (website)
Israeli singer & pianist croons from the Great Israeli-American Songbook

Israeli pianist Boaz Sharon – (Wiki)
Critically acclaimed Israeli pianist & recording artist; piano chair at Boston U. & young Artists program at Tanglewood
Performs Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 1 in D Flat Major

Israeli Violinist Kobi Malkin – (Website)
Award-winning Israeli violinist performances al over the world will grace us with Brahms’ Violin Concerto in D major

Cantor Joseph Ness – (Info Page)
American composer, orchestrator & arranger of hundreds of music spanning both the liturgical and concert genres conducts the orchestra and Beth l’s award-winning choirs.

Event: Broadway & Friends – Sunday Nov 6, 2016 – 7PM

Ellari Mirabel – Cantor
Cantor and resident of Florida, Chazzan Mirabel returns to her home town to sing and chant for us all weekend

Event: The Asian Influence – Sunday December 4, 2016 – 7pm

Seolyeong Jeong, Piano

Seolyeong Jeong made her solo recital debut at the age of 13 at Kumho Art Hall in Seoul, Korea. She has continued to perform solo and chamber music in major halls including the Seoul Arts Center. Ms. Jeong has participated successfully in many piano competitions and has won 1st prize in several, including the Korean Liszt Competition, Samick-Seiler Piano Competition and Korean Chopin Competition. Most recently, in 2016 she won the first prize in Connecticut’s Young Artist Competition. Seolyeong Jeong graduated from Seoul National University with a Bachelor of Music degree, Summa Cum Laude, in 2015 and is currently studying at Yale University School of Music with Peter Frankl working towards her Master of Music degree.

Kang Hua Singers of Greater Hartford – Founded in 1989, Kang Hua Singers of Greater Hartford is a group of dedicated performers actively performing locally and across the United States. Under the direction of artistic director Chai-lun Yueh, members have performed at world class venues such as Carnegie Hall in New York, Chicago Symphony Hall, Strathmore Concert Hall in Washington, Woolsey Hall in New Haven and the Bushnell Theater in Hartford; they have performed in colleges and universities including Yale, Rutgers, Temple, Trinity and University of Connecticut, among others.


Chai-lun Yueh – baritone & conductor Award-winning artist and exciting, dramatic baritone with a rich and powerful voice, a music director and voice educator and first Chinese born classical musician received the nomination of the Grammy Awards.

Chi Li – Violin
Chi Li regularly performs in North America, Asia and Europe. As such, he has given chamber music recitals and appeared as a soloist with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra and l’Orchestre de Chambre de Toulouse. He recorded his first album at age 14 – Ysaÿe’s 6 Sonatas for Solo Violin, using a violin made by Guadagnini that used to belong to Ysaÿe himself. Chi has also participated in numerous competitions and festivals : he was awarded the laureate prize at the Montreal International Music Competition and was invited to participate in Académie Ravel in France and the Tanglewood Music Center, among others. Chi has also attended masterclasses and collaborated with world famous musicians, including Emmanuel Ax, Yo-yo Ma and Maxim Vengerov. Chi entered the Paris Conservatory (CNSMDP) at age 13, studying with Régis Pasquier, Olivier Charlier and Joanna Matkowska; he graduated in 2013. In the fall of 2016, he will continue his studies at the New England Conservatory.


Chai-lun Yueh – Baritone

Event: Musical Shabbat on Friday – Saturday, February 10 – 11

Neshama Carlebach
neshamacarlebach (1)
Neshama Carlebach is a leading superstar in Jewish Entertainment, is continuing the legacy established by her father Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach. Like her father, Neshama’s talent and charisma captivate and endear her to people of all ages, faiths and backgrounds.

Event: Special Musical Service & Dinner

Cantor Jackie Mendelson
cantor jackie mendelsohn (1)
Cantor Mendelson is a graduate of the Hebrew Union College School of Sacred Music and the American Opera Center at the Juilliard School. He is the composer of Weekday Mincha and Maariv and Improvisations on Shabbat Shacharit published by the Cantors Assembly.

March 10-11


  • Friday night service with choirs & dinner (see the new Temple Topics for details
  • Saturday Shabbat services & light lunch
  • Megillah reading in the Main Sanctuary followed by a PURIM party in Kessler Hall with desserts, music with Cantor Ness and special guest Cantor Lauren Phillips of Congregation Beth Israel in West Hartford

PLUS Jackie Mendelson’s one-man play “The Cantor’s Couch”, a hilarious and poignant look at Jewish life.

For details see this months issue of Temple Topics , email direct to or call the temple office 860.233.9696.

Event: Giacomo Gates – Sunday Apr 2, 2017 – 7pm

Giacomo Gates
giacomo newer (1)
He is truly an entertainer, for all ages and styles, as audiences enjoy the music, the interaction on the bandstand between him and his musicians, the spontaneity, the humor, the stories about the music and composers, along with their relation to everyday life. People are smiling, having a good time, while thoroughly enjoying the music. What usually lacks in most of today’s performances is obviously present… fun!