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Sh’ma: Listen! Speaker Series is proud to present the Annual Morris and Ann Lazaroff Lecture: L’Oud and the Abstract Truth featuring Rabbi James Stone Goodman and Rabbi Zach Fredman, the Epichorus.   

The afternoon of unique music and storytelling, drawing from riches of a deep Middle Eastern Jewish tradition, will take place on Sunday, March 26 from 2:00-4:00 pm at the Jewish Federation of St. Louis Kopolow Building.

L’Oud and the Abstract Truth is the product of a multi-year effort by Rabbi James Stone Goodman and the Epichorus to record a traditional music video for every portion of the Torah, called “The Maqam Project.” Maqam (meaning place) is an arabic musical form, similar to a mode, that is played as a kind of structure over which one improvises. Maqam is a deep structure for music common to both Arab and Jewish traditions, the music of Abraham, so to speak, before the separation of his children, Isaac and Ishmael.

In many of the Middle Eastern Jewish traditions, there is a Maqam associated with every Torah portion. Rabbi Stone Goodman has been writing poetry to this form since 2009; approached by his student, Rabbi Zachary Fredman, bandleader of the Epichorus, the two found a way for poetry and music to meet. L’Oud and the Abstract Truth was released in the spring of 2016 and has enjoyed critical acclaim from the start.

RSVP to Nancy Dubman at 314-442-3771 or NDubman@JFedSTL.orgFor more information, contact Cyndee Levy, Director of the Center for Jewish Learning, at 314-442-3754 or can also learn more about the Sh’ma: Listen! Speaker Series and apply for your organization’s speaker to be featured at

Sh’ma Listen! is generously funded by the Lubin-Green Foundation, a supporting foundation of the Jewish Federation of St. Louis, and Hank Webber and Chris Jacobs.