Benjamin Fingerhut is a young composer and conductor with a passion for imaginative and adventurous approaches to music-making, encompassing new works and arrangements of existing compositions. As well as numerous collaborations with film makers, directors and choreographers, he has completed an array of concert works varying from a set of songs for mezzo-soprano Emily Kyte, a miniature for the ensemble FourSight, and a song without words for the Solaris String Quartet.
Benjamin’s journey with the Shabbaton Choir began in February 2019 when he accompanied them on their "Solidarity Through Song" mission to Israel and went on to become their Musical Director in 2020. He has enjoyed a life-long enthusiasm of composing and arranging for voice and choirs and believes the ensemble to be one of the most expressive vessels of conveying emotion through music.
Benjamin graduated from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 2014 having studied classical composition under the tuition of Paul Newland. Since then he has enjoyed a busy and diverse career working as a music educator, performer and composer/arranger.
Stephen Levey’s association with the Choir began as a chorister in 1986. In 1991 Stephen was invited to conduct the Choir for the Induction Service of Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks and he remained the Choir’s devoted Conductor and Musical Director until 2020. Stephen’s melodic compositions for the choir have become established favourites in services and concerts. Under his leadership, the Choir has built up a reputation for a mellow sound, sensitive singing and a rich interpretation of our tefillot. One of Stephen’s compositions, Oseh Shalom, was recorded in a West London studio, sung by the Choir with Jonny, Shimon, Lionel and children of the Moriah Jewish Day School (and the Chief Rabbi), and was released on YouTube. It has become a worldwide hit, having reached over 3.2 MILLION hits!
Stephen more recently worked with Raymond Goldstein (Jerusalem Great Synagogue). At the Barbican Hall, London in May 2013, Stephen premiered Anim Z’mirot written in honour of Emeritus Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks, and sung by the Choir with Chazanim Rabbi Lionel Rosenfeld, Shimon Craimer and Jonny Turgel, and 300 school children. In June 2020, the Shabbaton Choir announced the appointment of Stephen as their first-ever Conductor Laureate. As Conductor Laureate, Stephen will continue to identify opportunities for the Choir to perform – concerts, Shabbatonim and other services – as well as promoting the Choir to the Jewish community and more widely, within the UK, Israel and further afield. Stephen is Director of Music at Immanuel College in Bushey, Hertfordshire. You can read more about Stephen's music on his website http://www.stephenleveymusic.com