Love Songs for Sabbath
In 1967, the College of Saint Catherine decided to embark on a planned set of performances to increase understanding of other liturgies and other faiths through the performance of music. Love Songs for Sabbath was perhaps the first time a Jewish service had been performed under Catholic patronage.
As noted by Judah M. Cohen in an article on The Changing Sound of Jewish Liturgical Music, these performances were a prominent new experiement in liturgy, showing the program's influence beyond the St. Catherine community. The influence was so great, an encore performance was presented at the Temple Adath Jeshurun, recorded for KTCA-TV (now TPT), and distributed to other broadcasting studios.
Love Songs for Sabbath was written by Jewish composer Jack Gottlieb. The local performances were a collaboration between many people and organizations. The work calls for a cantor, mixed chorus, organ, dancers, and readers. All involved were from different religious backgrounds and came together to present this event.
Rabbi Bernard S. Raskas from the Temple Aaron in St. Paul, read the opening prayer and Jacob Goldstein, also from the Temple Aaron, cantored.
The mixed chorus of St. Thomas and St. Catherine performed the music under the direction of Sister Lucina.
Members of the St. Catherine speech department, George Poletes (Episcopalian) and Marjorie Kowalsky (Lutheran), were readers. The featured dancers for the performance were from Loyce Houlton's Contemporary Dance Playhouse, now the Minnesota Dance Theatre.
Sister Photina, art instructor at St. Catherine's, designed the art work for the performances. This includes designs for a large backdrop used in the sanctuary and a cover for the performance program.
Cohen, J. (2015). Sing Unto God: Debbie Friedman and the Changing Sound of Jewish Liturgical Music. Contemporary Jewry, 35(1), 13–34. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12397-014-9127-9