Leon Kahn Appointed New President of the Cantorial Council of America


chazzanLeon Kahn of Washington Heights, NY, a member of the Kashrus Division of the Orthodox Union, was recently appointed President of the Cantorial Council of America (CCA), the only international organization made up only of Shabbos-observant cantors. Members of the organization reside in the United States, Canada, Israel, and Europe.
CCA is an affiliate of Yeshiva University’s Philip and Sarah Belz School of Jewish Music; both are under the umbrella of the Rav Yitzchok Elchanan Theological Seminary (RIETS), YU’s rabbinical school.Mr. Kahn, whose day job is as an ingredient processor for the OU, also serves on Shabbos and Yom Tov as a professional chazzan, a job to which he brings over thirty years of experience.

“I started singing in an elementary school chorus under the famous musician choir conductor Seymour Silbermintz z”l,” said Mr. Kahn, speaking of his childhood in Washington Heights in Northern Manhattan. “Additionally, my father was a baal tefillah, and so that helped, as well.”

Mr. Kahn, a tenor, was elected to his CCA presidential post at CCA’s 49th annual convention, which recently took place at Kutsher’s Country Club in the Catskill Mountains of New York. As president, he will be responsible for organizing the yearly summer convention and other programs throughout the year.

Mr. Kahn is still in his old neighborhood; he has been the official chazzan of Washington Heights Congregation, also known as “the Bridge Shul” for its proximity to the George Washington Bridge, for the past twenty years. Before that, he spent ten years as the chazzan of Congregation Aderes-El, located in midtown Manhattan.

He declared, “The CCA is not in the entertainment business, but in the business to preserve and maintain authentic nusach tefillah. As the CCA is now in its fiftieth year, I hope to plan a number of events celebrating that achievement.”

{Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. I wonder if these cantors study the Mateh Efrayim.

    It’s not about your beautiful shtimmer, gentlemen. The requirements for a true Shaliach Tzibbur, especially for the Yomim Nora’im, are quite scary.

    Hashem should be mekabbel all of our tefillos!

  2. Mazal tov to Chazan Kahn on the Presidency. I believe he has served in that capacity before as well.

    The first comment here was out of place. If the commenter would have read what Chazan Kahan said, he should have seen that. So let me post it here so he can see it now. “He declared, “The CCA is not in the entertainment business, but in the business to preserve and maintain authentic nusach tefillah.”

    That means that he is saying that we are not promoting opera in Shul, but rather promoting traditional nusach hatefilloh, which is very important, as great gedolim such as the Maharil have stated. Unfortunately, in recent years, there has been a significant decline in knowledge of and use of nusach hatefillaoh in various circles, whether Modern Orthodox, Yeshivish, Chassidish…

    Efforts should be made to improve things. Maybe this website should write on the topic. Why not ask Chazan Kahan to submit an article on it?

  3. We have been mortified by his sudden & untimely passing. I spoke to him at Maariv last nite, and within the hour, he was already in Olom HaBo.