You can explore the work of cantors by participating in Jewish chorale groups or other music-related activities. Another good strategy is to talk with cantors about their careers. Professional cantor associations can provide you with contact information for cantors who would be willing to discuss their careers. Consider attending a service at a local synagogue to watch a cantor at work. Finally, check out the following resources to learn more about Judaism and the work of cantors:
The cantor sings liturgical prayers and leads the congregation in a “call-and-response” to his or her own sung responses during Jewish worship services. Cantors also play a role in Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Christian services, as well as in the Muslim faith, but this article focuses solely on cantors in the Jewish faith.
The cantor is a member of the clergy and also an accomplished singer. At some synagogues, cantors work under the supervision of rabbis, while at others they may work as partners with rabbis and share equal responsibility. Some synagogues may not have a rabbi, but only a cantor, or vice-versa. Job responsibilities vary for cantors by religious movement, size of the congregation, and other criteria, but typical duties include: