Tonight while the post-Yom Kippur break-fast meal was heating up I checked my email and found an update from "Jewniverse, When the Hearthrob of the Yiddish Cinema Led Kol Nidre."
If Kol Nidre has never made you shiver with emotion, then you must see the 1940 acclaimed Yiddish film Overture to Glory. Made in New York, the film offers a glimpse at a world—and an art form—that peaked just before its own destruction. With music written by the great Yiddish theater conductor Alexander Olshanetsky and starring Moishe Oysher, a real life cantor and actor, Overture to Glory tells a tale both timeless and deeply evocative of a lost world.
The film follows young cantor Yoel Duvid Strashunsky, played byOysher, as he is lured away by the bright lights and big promises of Warsaw. But the secular world churns him out and he returns to Vilna sick, bereaved and penniless on the eve of Yom Kippur. In the final scene he staggers into his synagogue, hears the Kol Nidre, and breaks in to electrify his community with his beautiful, familiar voice...
|Neil Diamond in The Jazz Singer|
A personal favorite of mine is Leonard Cohen's version of the “Unetaneh Tokef” Prayer, which he calls, "Who by Fire?" You won't hear his version in the synagogue, but it's impressive none the less.
What's your favorite celebrity version of a Yom Kippur prayer?