Cantors fete one of their own


Eleven cantors will be singing the praises of their colleague, Kim Komrad, as she marks a dozen years at Kehilat Shalom in Gaithersburg. The Sunday event will also include a performance by D.C.-based klezmer group Lox & Vodka.

It will be a reunion of sorts for the cantors, most of whom are close friends with each other, and Komrad, says Douglas Baum, president of Kehilat Shalom.

“She’s been in touch with all these cantors for many years, and has performed all over the country,” Baum says. “[The cantors] felt obligated to come out and celebrate her life and accomplishments.”

They will perform in two groups, according to Komrad. Seven cantors from the Baltimore-Washington area and one from Toronto will perform a cappella pieces and songs in the Israeli folk genre. Komrad will also perform traditional cantorial pieces with three other cantors, and will sing two songs with Lox & Vodka as well.

Baum says the cantors insisted on performing at the event because of their respect and admiration for Komrad, who was the first female chazzan to hold a pulpit in a Conservative synagogue in the Baltimore-Washington area.

Komrad, who has served as president of the Cantors Assembly’s Seaboard Region for 13 years, says she’s flattered Kehilat Shalom chose to honor her in this way, and has no thoughts about changing jobs anytime soon.

“I have no plans to leave,” she says. “God willing, I’ll be there for many years until they force me to retire.” – Ian Zelaya

The event runs from 6 p.m.-10 p.m. Sunday. See our calendar, page 25, for more information.

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