The Spiritual Sounds CoLaboratory
The Spiritual Sounds CoLaboratory

The Spiritual Sounds CoLaboratory

In Philadelphia

(Powered by Hadar)


The Spiritual Sounds CoLaboratory aims to cultivate the grassroots musical-spiritual creativity of the Jewish people.  A holistic nexus point of creative musicians, prayer leaders, and raw collective song, this musical CoLaboratory hopes to help reinvent the future of music as a communal Jewish spiritual practice.

The Spiritual Sounds CoLaboratory emphasizes the intricate interdependence of advanced musical-spiritual artists and the powerful energy of people gathered in community to sing.  As such, we’ll start by creating a Philadelphia-based song and prayer gathering (“The House of the Rising Song”), then open a national-scope artist fellowship (“The Spiritual Sounds Sing Tank”), and finally work towards creating a full-time study program to open in Sept. 2019 (“Spiritual Sounds Kollel”). Meanwhile, as part of the professional Spiritual Sounds Studio project, we’ll record and publish new music with the Hadar Ensemble and other road-tested special guests, and continue to create comprehensive musical study resources that will be available on  In addition, we’ll work with a group of Philadelphia-based musical-spiritual innovators to develop a thriving Jewish musical movement locally, while continuing to visit and inspire a wide range of communities nationally and internationally.

Led by internationally recognized musician, composer, and teacher Joey Weisenberg, the author of Building Singing Communities, the Spiritual Sounds CoLaboratory will empower its national fellows and local communal collaborators to deepen their connections with traditional Jewish melodies and ancient spiritual modalities while concurrently bringing their full creative selves to the process of composing new music for the Jewish community and beyond.  

The CoLaboratory has three project areas: community-wide singing for all, immersive training for emerging musical-spiritual leaders, and professional content development.

  1. COMMUNITY-WIDE SINGING: "The House of the Rising Song": Song and Prayer Gatherings for All

    1. The House of the Rising Song In Philadelphia:  A meeting place for Jewish spiritual singing and music in Philadelphia, led by Joey Weisenberg and special guests!  The HRS gathers for Havdallah (Parting with the Sabbath) on the FIRST Saturday night of each month in the Turell Skyspace in the Chestnut Hill Friends Meeting.  The HRS is a powerful communal opportunity to explore the full spectrum of spiritual sound and prayer, from silence to song.  Open to All!  (Starting April 2017)

    2. On the Road: Scholar-Musicians in Residence:  Continue to visit and inspire a wide range of communities nationally and internationally. 

  1. IMMERSIVE TRAINING: "Spiritual Sounds Kollel": Study Programs and Fellowships for emerging musical-spiritual leaders.

    1. "Spiritual Sounds Sing Tank" A convening of musical-spiritual innovators: A recurring gathering of accomplished musicians and prayer leaders, aiming to develop new modalities of musical spiritual expression for a new breed of 21st century musical-spiritual leaders.  Meeting four times over two years in Philadelphia. By invitation only.  (Starting Sept 2017.)

    2. Singing Communities Intensive NYC: Four days of singing in New York, every December.  This is a come-all event, for everyone who wants to experience amazing singing and Torah study.  Open to All! Join us on December 18-21, 2017.

    3. Spiritual Sounds Summer Session” 2-3 weeks of serious study of musical-spirituality. An expanded opportunity (2-3 weeks of study) for serious musicians and spiritual practitioners to study traditional Jewish prayer-music that can inform their innovative concepts in Jewish sacred song. By application.  (Starting Summer 2018.)

    4. "Spiritual Sounds Kollel: Year Program”: The musical kollel (institute) will be a nine-month collaboration and study opportunity for five talented musician-prayer leaders to explore the fertile interactions between Jewish spiritual expression, musical composition, and communal song.  This year of guided musical-spiritual exploration will open up a lifetime of creative communal contribution. We intend for graduates of this program to become serious leaders of their musical spiritual communities. By application. (Starting Sept. 2019.)

  1. PROFESSIONAL CONTENT DEVELOPMENT  “Spiritual Sounds Studio" : Publishing recordings and resources from road-tested, professional musical leaders.

    1. Recordings and Musical Collaborations:  Record new music with the Hadar Ensemble and special guests. Continuing in the line of the Hadar Ensemble's six albums, but also exploring new directions in spiritual sound.  Performances in Philadelphia.  (Starting Sept. 2017.)

    2. Educational Resources:  Continue to create and distribute comprehensive Jewish musical study resources, in line with the books Building Singing Communities and The Torah of Music (Forthcoming, Expected 2017) as well as the educational recordings of prayer melodies and nigunim available on  

This Spiritual Sounds CoLaboratory hopes to inspire Philadelphia’s local musical-spiritual culture while providing a model that can be replicated, nationally and internationally, to allow music to open the hearts of people everywhere!

Learning Tefillah
Want to learn more about our prayers—from both a meaning and experiential angle? Read and listen to thoughts on different sections of tefillah from R. Elie Kaunfer, Dena Weiss, and Joey Weisenberg.