How to Incorporate Music Into Your Seder

The Passover Seder is full of traditional songs that many people have known since childhood, and it also offers numerous places for additional music to be performed. Still, many families downplay the music in the Seder, either because they lack familiarity with it or because their guests lack the tools to participate. The following are some suggestions to bring music to the foreground of your Seder.


Step 1

Learn the basics. If you did not grow up singing Ha Lachma and Adir Hu, now is a great time to learn these Passover staples. You may be able to contact someone from your synagogue if you need help, or your could purchase a CD of Passover music.

Step 2

Use Haggadot that work for you. If you and/or your guests need transliterations for Hebrew, get Haggadot that include this, or find the words online and make inserts for your Haggadah. People are much more likely to sing if they can at least approximate the words.

Step 3

Use music. If any of your guests can read music, having the actual notes, as opposed to just the words, makes it much easier for people to sing along. See if you can find song sheets with notes of the Passover songs you will be singing.

Step 4

Add in some new songs. There are many additional songs you can sing during your Seder, from Go Down Moses to Miriam's Song. As these are in English, they may be more accessible. Also, there are a number of Passover songs that have been written to the tune of show tunes (many are available online) that you can use if you think your guests would appreciate these.

Step 5

Use instruments. If someone at your Seder can play guitar or keyboard, that's great. However, you can also distribute simple percussion instruments (hand drums, maracas) that everyone, regardless of ability, can enjoy. Once again, this makes the musical portion of the Seder more inclusive and gives people who don't know the words a way to participate.

Things You'll Need

Haggadot with music or musical inserts, Musical instruments

About this Author

Alyssa Kaplan is a writer and editor with particular interest in the fields of education and Jewish life.

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