The Baltimore Hebrew Congregation Brotherhood celebrated its centennial anniversary on June 2 with a dinner and musical celebration entitled, “Jews To My Ears.”
Sid Bravman, BHC Brotherhood president, explained that entertainment and speakers tend to be the highlights of major events. “I went to a concert at the Jewish Museum of Maryland in March 2018 and saw a young Jewish soprano, and was so impressed with her vocal ability that I signed her to do the 2019 closing dinner,” he said. That soprano was Sarah Baumgarten.
Baumgarten has performed at venues such as Baltimore’s Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, The Kimmel Center, Dixon Place, the Library of Congress, The Capitol, The Jewish Museum of Maryland, several synagogues in the Baltimore and Philadelphia areas and at Andrea Clearfield’s Salon in Philadelphia. She sings with the Philadelphia Orchestra Symphonic Choir, Chizuk Amuno Congregation, Concert Artists of Baltimore, the Thomas Jefferson University Choir, Night & Day Enterprises and is currently the music director and soprano choral scholar at St. Andrew’s United Methodist Church in Cherry Hill, New Jersey.
Her favorite roles include Musetta (“La Bohème”); Cinderella (“A Tale of Cinderella”); Noémie (“Cendrillon”) and Papagena (“Die Zauberflote”). Sarah has been featured with Annapolis Opera, OperaWorks, Larry McKenna’s New Voices Cabaret, New York Lyric Opera Theatre, Delaware Valley Opera Company, Opera on Tap-Philadelphia, Asheville Lyric Opera, the International Vocal Arts Institute (Tel Aviv), Vancouver Summer Opera Workshop and Garden State Opera as Rebecca Kaplan in the new opera, “The Yellow Star.” She debuted her solo concert, “No One is Alone: The Jewish Tradition on Broadway,” a lecture recital detailing the affect of Jewish songwriters on American Musical Theatre, at the Jewish Museum of Maryland which she reprised at Beth El Congregation in Baltimore and Temple Beth Sholom in Cherry Hill, New Jersey.
“Jews to My Ears” is a program of Jewish songs, and songs by Jewish composers that Baumgarten put together specifically for the Brotherhood anniversary dinner. “I designed it to not just include musical theater, but art songs and popular songs as well,” Baumgarten said.