My Jewish Learning

Jewish Music Quiz

Jewish music today extends well beyond the synagogue, to the concert halls of Israel, the Klezmer revival, and the reggae of Matisyahu. How much do you know about Jewish music?

Question 1. Whose job was it to sing and play musical instruments as part of the Temple service?
 Poor people
 The High Priest


Question 2. Which of these statements about Fiddler on the Roof is true?
 It is one of the three most succesful musicals in American history
 It was intended primarily for non-Jewish Broadway audiences
 It has for decades served as a Jewish cultural icon
 All of these


Question 3. Which composition by George Gershwin is a fusion of European classical music with pop, jazz, and blues?
 Porgy and Bess
 Rhapsody in Blue
 The Jazz Singer
 Cuban Overture


Question 4. What factor has contributed to the development of a rich tradition of classical music in Israel?
 A government policy to fund "Western" music, as opposed to "Eastern" music
 The belief that classical music could instil Zionist values
 The popularity of the Eurovision competition
 The immigration of European musicians to Israel


Question 5. Which event brought Cantor Yosselle Rosenblatt to the attention of the New York Times in 1917?
 His refusal of Cleofonte Campanini's offer to sing the lead at the Chicago Opera
 His appearance at the New York Public Library for the War Savings Stamp Campaign, when he sang "The Star Spangled Banner"
 Leading the prayer service at the First Hungarian Congregation Ohab Zedek, one of New York's premier synagogues
 When he sang before a crowd of 6,000 at the Hippodrome Theater to raise funds for Jews suffering in Europe


Question 6. Bob Dylan's 1983 album, Infidels, contains an implicitly pro-Zionist song called:
 Neighborhood Bully
 Highway Sixty One Revisited
 I Dreamed I Saw St Augustine
 Blowin' in the Wind


Question 7. Chava Alberstein sings in which three languages?
 English, French, and Hebrew
 Yiddish, Hebrew, and English
 Polish, Hebrew, and Yiddish
 Russian, Hebrew, and Yiddish