AARON BENSOUSSAN — Moroccan (Vocals and Oud)
Moroccan-born Aaron Bensoussan studied the art of Sephardic liturgical music with his Father and master musicians in Morocco. Part of a Moroccan rabbinic dynasty, his Grandfather, Rabbi Haim David Bensoussan was the Chief Rabbi of Morocco and his Great Grandfather was one of the most revered rabbis to emerge from the City of Fez. According to the Encycolpedia Judaica, the Bensoussan Family traces back to Rabbi Yehuda Bensoussan, a teacher of Maimonides.
His interest in Ashkenazic music and cantorial music began when he went to New York at the age of 14 to study in Yeshiva. A graduate of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, he also studied at Yeshiva University Belz School of Music and Queens College. He was fortunate to study with master Hazzanim in both the Ashkenazic and Sephardic traditions including the late Moshe Ganchoff, David Koussevitzky and Sammy Amzallag. Other notables include: Noach Schall, Daniel Gildar, and Avraham Ben Haim. Aaron Bensoussan has served as lead Hazzan for 25 years in large congregations in both New York and Toronto.
During and since his cantorial career, he has performed in concerts and festivals all over the world in some of the leading halls including: Carnegie Hall in New York City as well as the Jerusalem Theatre and The Mann Auditorium in Israel. One of his most satisfying creative endeavors has been composing music combining Ashkenazic and Sephardic elements of Middle Eastern, Jazz, Flamenco and Pop rhythms masterfully woven together in a colorful tapestry.
His newly released CD, A New Journey, encompassing these multi-cultural elements, received rave reviews. His renowned composition of L’cha Dodi, included on the Putumayo label of their World Music Series compilation, A Jewish Odyssey has been sung in synagogues all over the world. With many cantorial and pop recordings to his credit, Aaron’s repertoire includes his original compositions and Judeo-Moroccan classics. Hailed by the New York Times for his stout and impassioned singing, numerous Cantors and singers have sought permission to record his compositions on their own albums.