Guiding Your Soul with
Jewish Learning & Music
Hazzan Brian Baruch Shamash’s passion for Jewish music is evident in the way he conducts Shabbat and Holyday services. Families are captivated and engaged to actively participate in prayer by his unique vocal and communicative talents. Brian Shamash is equally at home in Ashkenazic and Sephardic music, while his love of teaching and learning Jewish music inspires all ages.
Hazzan Shamash has unique and original ways of finding the voice in each of us. By incorporating Middle Eastern hand percussion instruments, guitar and sign language in the classroom, our hallowed prayers come alive to help us better communicate with our Creator. Nothing brings him more joy than helping a couple create a meaningful wedding ceremony, being part of the growth of a B’nai Mitzvah student, or bringing comfort to a congregant in the hospital with the Jewish expression of song.
Hazzan Shamash leads our Jewish community with innovation while encouraging the understanding of traditional texts and prayer modes. It is apparent that he strives to pray and serve us with both kavod and kavanah: honor, respect and intent. He inspires us with beautiful music, and has quickly become an integral part of our lives.
The Hazzan holds Bachelor and Masters Degrees in music from the University of Maryland and the University of Miami respectively, where he was awarded full scholarships. He bears a certificate of Hazzan-Minister with the Cantors Assembly and has pursued rabbinic study privately and through courses at the Academy for Jewish Religion and the Jewish Theological Seminary .
Shamash proudly serves as Hazzan of Temple Israel of Great Neck in Long Island New York. When he's not serving the Jewish and greater community, Brian enjoys yoga, skateboarding and swimming in the ocean. He and his lovely wife Emily are proud parents of three beautiful children Ella, Maya and Ethan.
Artist-in-Residence “Pop Art” Rabbi Yitzchok engaged our students in creating original works of art during religious school.