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Israeli Dance Leader Sharona Wachs Offers “Synagogue Scholars” Talk on Dance and Movement in the Bible and Prayer

B’nai Sholom Reform Congregation concludes its popular “Synagogue Scholars” lecture series with a participatory event on dance and movement with Israeli dance scholar Sharona Wachs.Wachs will present her talk, “Dance and Movement in the Bible and in Prayer,” during the congregation’s Friday, April 17, Shabbat service. The service and program, open to all who wish to worship and learn, begin at 8 p.m. B’nai Sholom is located at 420 Whitehall Road, Albany, New York.   

This special program will begin with a talk about the biblical and rabbinic sources of dance and movement in prayer and worship, particularly Shabbat prayer, and the subsequent influence on modern Israeli folk dance.  It will conclude with a teaching session of three dances that illustrate the talk.Wachs is a monographic cataloger and subject librarian for Judaic Studies at the University at Albany. 

She has authored several scholarly bibliographies, including American Jewish Liturgies: A Bibliography of American Jewish Liturgy from the Establishment of the Press in the Colonies through 1925, published by Hebrew Union College Press, and a more recent annotated bibliography on American Jewish women’s liturgy and ritual, 1973-2000.  Active in Israeli dance for more than 50 years, Wachs has participated in Temple Israel’s Community Israeli Dance program since 1992 and has been a dance session leader and instructor of the program’s adult classes since 2002.

Begun in 2004, the “Synagogue Scholars” lecture series spotlights B’nai Sholom congregants who are recognized scholars in their fields. The series will resume in 2016.

For more information, visit or contact the B’nai Sholom office at or phone 518-482-5283.

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