If you teach or lead music in camps, congregations, or community centers, Hava Nashira is for you. Created by Debbie Friedmanz"l and Cantor Jeff Klepper among others, Hava Nashira provides you with the opportunity to improve your skills as you learn from the finest Jewish music innovators and composers. 2015 faculty included: Cantor Jeff Klepper, Ellen Allard, Merri Lovinger Arian, Noah Aronson, Cantor Rosalie Boxt, Rabbi Ken Chasen, Cantor Ellen Dreskin, Alan Goodis, Billy Jonas, Shira Kline, Josh Nelson and Dan Nichols. Cantor Rosalie Boxt has been coordinating the Hava Nashira faculty and program since 2012. Instrumental proficiency is preferred but not necessary. The program is open to adults, college age and older. Read about the 2015 Hava Nashira faculty.
How to Register for Hava Nashira
Priority Early Registration for Newcomers
The Hava Nashira faculty and OSRUI staff are committed to providing the opportunity to attend Hava Nashira and improve songleading and music skills to as many songleaders, music teachers, rabbis, cantors, students and others as possible. Therefore, we offer priority early registration: to those who have never attended Hava Nashira or who have attended only once before. Hava Nashira priority early newcomer registration will tentatively be held on Sunday, March 6, 2016, at 4 pm Eastern / 3 pm Central / 2 pm Mountain / 1 pm Pacific time, for a limited number of spaces in the program, and will be closed as soon as those spaces are filled. The registration links near the top of this page will activate at that time. Newcomers who are not able to sign up at that time are encouraged to sign up during regular Hava Nashira registration. These newcomer spots are reserved for those who teach or lead music in camps, congregations, or community centers.
Regular registration will open on Sunday, March 13, 2016, at 4 pm Eastern / 3 pm Central / 2 pm Mountain / 1 pm Pacific time. The registration links near the top of this page will activate at that time. Applications will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis until the program is filled. The program fills quickly.
If you are going to be a songleader at a URJ or Ramah camp during the summer of 2016, your camp director will send you instructions on how to sign up for the URJ / Ramah songleaders' track. 2016 URJ and Ramah songleaders staying in dormitory housing do NOT participate in regular online enrollment. The Ramah program officially ends at noon Friday due to the customs of the Ramah community as Shabbat will not be traditionally observed. Ramah participants are welcome to stay through Shabbat if they would like to as an individual, not as a Ramah staff person.
New in 2015: for non-URJ and Ramah camp songleaders (from camps such as BBYO, JCC, Young Judaea and others), there were offerings to choose from taught by Cantor Rosalie Boxt, Dan Nichols, Alan Goodis and other amazing faculty. Included were songleading and electives such as URJ camp repertoire to help you gain skills and grow as a songleader and teacher of Jewish music. Sign up for these intensives and electives after you sign up for Hava Nashira.
What's Hava Nashira like? Download a schedule from Hava Nashira 2015. You will receive the 2016 schedule upon arrival. The 2015 schedule should give you a good idea of how the program is structured.
Intensives and Electives. Participants have the choice of taking two intensives (2.25 hour in-depth learning sessions) and three electives (1-1.5 hour shorter learning sessions). We hope this allows more diversity in offerings from which to choose. Download 2015 Intensives and Electives to give you an idea of intensives and electives that have been offered.
Two-part registration: first you will complete a form that asks for your name, address, email address, phone #s, name of roommate if you want to specify one, number of times you have attended Hava Nashira and your age. After you submit that form, you will have until April 1 (or 7 days after you register) to fill out the second part of your registration, indicating your intensive and elective choices, diet issues and other information. We hope this will give participants the time to make deliberate choices.
The fee for Hava Nashira includes lodging, meals and all programming and materials. Semi-private housing is available in the Bayit, Lodge and Daniel M. Soref Education and Alumni Center (rooms with 2 twin beds and private or shared bath); and in the Nerenberg Family Center (rooms with 2 twin beds with communal washrooms at the end of the hall). Lodging is also available in dormitory cabins (separate for men and women), featuring bunk beds for 24 participants in each cabin, with adjacent washrooms and showers. Read more about the various categories of housing .
The fees for 2016 are $810 for semi-private housing in the Bayit, Lodge, and Daniel M. Soref Education and Alumni Center; $675 in the Nerenberg Family Center; and $550 for dormitory housing or for those staying off-site. The dorm housing/off-site tuition is the same as in 2015. No private rooms are available.
Scholarship Opportunities for Hava Nashira
Training summer camp songleaders is a priority of the program. Camp directors – please contact us directly if you have songleaders you want to enroll after the program has filled. We save a few spots for summer camp songleaders and will make every effort to accommodate your staff in dormitory cabin housing.
After you register online, please finalize your registration by mailing your check made payable to OSRUI to: OSRUI/Hava Nashira, 1121 Lake Cook Road, Suite D, Deerfield IL 60015, within 10 days. We regret that we cannot accept payment by credit card as we are trying to keep the costs as reasonable as possible.
We strongly encourage you to use a laptop, desktop, or tablet computer to register, NOT a smart phone. If you would like to try out one of our registration forms before we open registration to see if your device is compatible with our system, please try this test registration form. If you do not see the "submit" button or are not directed to a confirmation website, please try again with a different browser or computer. When you are preparing to register, please have the following information ready: name, email address, day and alternate phone numbers, name of preferred roommate (optional), and the name of the synagogue, camp or organization you work for. You will also be asked to describe your primary music role (songleader, teacher, cantor etc.), if you have diet restrictions, and your age category.
Hava Nashira takes place at Olin-Sang-Ruby Union Institute, the regional camp of the Union for Reform Judaism in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin, located between Milwaukee and Madison. Attendees are responsible for their own transportation to camp. The nearest airport is Milwaukee, Wisconsin (MKE - Mitchell Field), a 50-minute drive from camp. The best time to arrive at the Milwaukee Airport is between 10:30 am and 2:30 pm. The camp is also a 2-hour drive from O’Hare Airport in Chicago.
Bus to Camp for URJ and Ramah Songleaders
A bus will pick up URJ and Ramah songleaders at the Milwaukee airport at 1:30 pm on Tuesday, May 31, and bring them to camp. A bus or van will also bring Ramah songleaders back to the airport, leaving OSRUI at 12:30 pm on Friday, June 3 (Ramah songleaders make flight reservations for 2:30 pm or later Friday) or 11:30 am on Sunday, June 5 (Ramah songleaders make flight reservations for 2 pm or later Sunday). Songleaders who are arriving or leaving at any other time are responsible for their own transportation to OSRUI and back to the Milwaukee airport. URJ songleaders are responsible for making their own reservations for van transit back to MKE. The link to make a reservation is in the upper-right-hand corner of this page.
Van transportation from the Milwaukee Airport to camp and back
All participants other than URJ and Ramah songleaders (see above) are responsible for their own transportation from the Milwaukee Airport (MKE) to OSRUI and back. We recommend using GO Riteway van service. A link to make a reservation for this service is in the upper-right-hand corner of this page.
Additional transit options
Some participants like to fly into O'Hare Airport in Chicago. There are hourly bus shuttles from O'Hare to the Milwaukee Airport, where you can get a ride on a van to camp. Amtrak also runs from downtown Chicago and Glenview, Illinois to the Milwaukee Airport (where you can get a ride on a van to camp). We encourage those who are looking to offer or share rides to OSRUI to indicate their interest in the Hava Nashira 2012 facebook group.
There is a $100 cancellation fee if you cancel on or before May 1st. Cancellations must be made in writing. There are no refunds for cancellations received after May 1st.
If you are on facebook and would like to communicate with and share resources with other participants, go to:
Hava Nashira / Shabbat Shira facebook page
Hava Nashira 2012 facebook group
For those of you who come to Hava Nashira for the community, for the music, or for an inspirational weekend, more so than for song-leading and educational opportunities, you might want to consider our fall music program Shabbat Shira instead.
Hava Nashira 2017 is scheduled for May 31 - June 4, 2017.
Hava Nashira usually starts the Wednesday after Memorial Day every year.
For more information or to be added to the Hava Nashira or Shabbat Shira mailing lists,
please contact Barbara Gordon at 847-239-6984 or email@example.com .
*Hava Nashira is a proprietary program name and may not be used for other programs or events without express written consent.
This program is underwritten in part through
a generous grant from the Daniel M. Soref Charitable Trust.