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our Music Professionals

Cantor Hayley kobilinsky

Cantor Hayley Kobilinsky is delighted to be joining the Temple Israel of Northern Westchester community.  Cantor Kobilinsky plays multiple instruments, though you will most often see her with a guitar in hand as she sings. She loves weaving together Jewish music from all eras, regions, and traditions, and is very much looking forward to making music with Temple Israel's musical team. 

After receiving a B.A. in Psychology from Columbia University while also attending The Juilliard School of Music, Cantor Kobilinsky decided to combine her love for music and Judaism by becoming a Cantor. She received a Master of Sacred Music degree followed by Ordination as a Cantor from Hebrew Union College in 2005. Cantor Kobilinsky formerly served as Student Cantor of East End Temple in New York City (2002-2005), and Cantor of Congregation B‘nai Yisrael in Westchester (2005-2019). She also served as an adjunct professor at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, and the President of Kol Hazzanim, Westchester's Cantors' organization. Cantor Kobilinsky has been the Spiritual Leader of Chavurat Tikvah of Mid-Westchester, a small congregation of 25 families, since 2019. 

Over her career Cantor Kobilinsky has taught and officiated for approximately 600 bar and bat mitzvah students.  Cantor Kobilinsky is a polyglot who has studied 5 foreign languages including Yiddish, and is also a Soferet STaM (a scribe who can write and repair Torah scrolls, megillot, etc.). She has even performed repairs on one of Temple Israel's own Torah scrolls! Cantor Kobilinsky has lived in Bedford Hills for 17 years, with her husband, Benjamin Poserow and their son, Samuel, who will become bar mitzvah this year.

rabbi/cantor sklar

Rabbi/Cantor Dan Sklar is looking forward to working alongside the talented clergy and staff at Temple Israel of Northern Westchester and getting to know the community.  He was ordained as Cantor from the Debbie Friedman School of Sacred Music at Hebrew Union College–Jewish Institute of Religion in 2006 and was ordained from HUC as a rabbi in 2008. After ordination, Rabbi/Cantor Sklar went on to serve Westchester Reform Temple in Scarsdale, NY (2006-2012) and Temple Israel in Westport (2012-2020). He currently serves as a chaplain with Visiting Nurse and Hospice of Fairfield County, CT and he has been the music director for musicals at Bedford Middle School in Westport, CT.

Rabbi/Cantor Sklar grew up in Northbrook, IL and earned a Bachelor of Music from Oberlin Conservatory in 1994. After college, he lived and worked in New York City – first as a secretary for director Hal Prince and then as an actor. His theatrical credits include two and a half years in the Broadway tour of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (Lefou). More recently, he had an opportunity to appear in an Equity production of the Jewish-themed musical Falsettoland (Marvin) with his son Ari (Jason) at Music Theatre Connecticut for which they both won a 2022 Connecticut Critics Circle award. Rabbi/Cantor Sklar’s creative pursuits include writing, music composition and digital content creation resulting in a mention on the list of Kveller's Best Purim Parodies of 2022. He was a Hebrew consultant for the Coen brothers’ film, A Serious Man, and a rabbinic consultant on an episode of HBO’s Boardwalk Empire. Rabbi/Cantor Sklar self-published his first book entitled Sh*tshow: A Memoir and 2020 Mixtape, a memoir, playlist and reflections on the pandemic in 2020.

Rabbi/Cantor Sklar is a member of the Central Conference of American Rabbis and the American Conference of Cantors.  His wife, Rabbi/Cantor Shirah Sklar is the senior rabbi at Temple Shalom in Norwalk, CT. The Sklars live in Westport with their sons, Ari, Isaac and Jonah.

Eddie Pleasant, Choir Director

Edward Pleasantbaritone, is recognized as one of the most versatile performers of his generation.  Critically acclaimed in both opera and musical theater, he has distinguished himself as a gifted actor with brilliant comic timing and a luscious baritone voice.  Eddie first came to Temple Israel in 1991 and he has been a fixture during the High Holidays at Temple Israel ever since.  He first served as bass soloist in the professional quartet and then in 2008 he was asked to take the helm of the adult choir Hallel B’Shir.  Along with his duties with the adult choir, Eddie enjoys working other vocal ensembles at Temple Israel, namely the Glee Club and Selah.  Eddie particularly enjoys his time with the Brotherhood Choir every year as well.  He is proud to have been named an honorary member of this fine group of brothers.  

Dina Pruzhansky, Accompanist and composer in residence

Our accompanist Dina Pruzhansky is a NYC based, award-winning composer, pianist, and educator. Born in the former USSR and Israeli-raised, Ms. Pruzhansky enjoys a diverse international career in various genres, ranging from classical to musical theater and from liturgy to cabaret. As a composer-performer, she has been featured in many of New York's renowned music venues, such as Carnegie Hall's Stern Auditorium, Jazz at Lincoln Center, Merkin Hall, Bargemusic, Le Poisson Rouge, Symphony Space, The Kosciuszko Foundation, YIVO, Opera America Center, and others. Her music has been broadcast on WQXR in an exclusive 'Young Artist' program with the renowned host Robert Sherman. Following the successful premiere of her original Hebrew opera SHULAMIT  in 2014, additional production was enabled by popular demand in 2016. The opera was also presented in part at the Aspen Music Festival 2019. An alumna of the BMI Advanced Musical Theater Workshop, Ms.Pruzhansky was nominated for the Fred Ebb Award for Excellence in Musical Theatre writing and was selected as a finalist for the 2019 NY Musical Theater festival with her musical for children CENTRAL PARK. She has served as a liturgy composer-in-residence at TINW and Temple Shalom, Dallas. A passionate educator, Ms. Pruzhansky is the author of the ‘I Can Play Chopin’ series — a collection of easy piano arrangements for beginners. She currently serves as a faculty member at the 92nd Street Y School of Music, NYC. 

Sh'Ma Na Na, Temple israel's Band

Sh'ma Na Na is Temple Israel's congregational band, which is comprised of professional musicians who volunteer to bring their talents to our community.  The group recently had its 15th Anniversary and is led by Cantor Fogelman (back left) and Band Director, Brian Gelfand (front right).  Sh'ma Na Na's members include Laura Copel, Carol Merle Fishman, Daniel Levin, Philip Levine and Bob Meyer.

Fri, April 12 2024 4 Nisan 5784