US/World News

Sherwood Goffin was cantor at Lincoln Square Synagogue for 50 years

By Marcy Oster

(JTA) – Cantor Sherwood Goffin, the cantor of Lincoln Square Synagogue on Manhattan’s West Side for 50 years, died April 10. He was 77.

Goffin, a resident of Manhattan, who was known by many as “The Chaz,” was granted Cantor for Life tenure at the synagogue in 1986, and also served there as the principal for its Feldman Hebrew School. He was a teacher of Jewish Liturgy and Folk Music since 1987 at Yeshiva University’s Belz School of Jewish Music. He also was the honorary president of the Cantorial Council of America, the only Orthodox organization of cantors in the world, an affiliate of Yeshiva University.

Goffin recorded Jewish music albums, including cantorial music, liturgical music, folk music and an album from 1970 dedicated to Soviet Jewish refuseniks. He performed until 1995 in venues throughout North America, and in South Africa and Israel, including performances at Carnegie Hall and Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center.

Goffin grew up in New Haven and attended high school at Mesivta Torah Vodaath in Brooklyn, New York. He received a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Yeshiva University in 1963 and a Cantorial Degree from the Belz School of Jewish Music in 1966.

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