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High Holy Days 5781 (2020)

Even with the Covid complications, we’re proud to be able to once again offer our magnificent High Holy Day services, live and in-person! Here’s everything you need to know:

Where’s it happening?

George Weston Recital Hall, The Meridian Arts Centre
(formerly known as the Toronto Centre for the Arts)

We’re back in the elegant and beautiful George Weston! Perfect acoustics, comfortable seats, and plenty of space for you to sit with your family or bubble members, but socially distanced from others. Register here if you’re a member. Members will also receive a link to livestream.

When? What time?

Rosh Hashanah Day 1, September 19th, 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM
Rosh Hashanah Day 2, September 20th, 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM
Kol Nidre, September 27th, 6:45 PM – 8:45 PM
Yom Kippur Day, including Yizkor, September 28th, 10:00 AM – 1:30 PM
Yom Kippur Mincha 5:00 PM
Yom Kippur Ne’ila 6:30 PM
Note: Our daytime services will begin with the Torah reading, so please daven Shacharit at home.

Who’s invited?

1. Members of The Song Shul over the age of bar/bat mitzvah are most welcome to join us!
2. Members over the age of 65 should consider personal health conditions before registering. (We encourage you to consult with your physician to determine whether or not to attend.)

Who should stay home?

1. Members who are immunocompromised or who have another condition which increases the risk of severe illness with Covid-19 are strongly urged to continue to daven at home.
2. For safety, we ask that children under the age of bar/bat-mitzvah remain at home. There are no children’s programs planned and it is prohibited to have children wandering around.

Who’s leading?

As usual, Cantor Simon and Aliza will guide us into the New Year with our fast-paced, relaxed, meaningful and unforgettable services. Some of the Toronto Festival Singers will be in attendance, with plexiglass to separate them and to offer complete protection while their beautiful vocal harmonies accompany Cantor Simon’s chanting.

Are there any speakers?

You bet! We’re proud to welcome to our bimah these illustrious personalities:
Robert Lantos, Renowned Canadian Film Producer – 1st Day Rosh Hashana
Dr. Gary Newton, President and CEO of Sinai Health – Yom Kippur Day
Doris Bergen, Holocaust Historian – Yom Kippur Ne’ila

How safe is it?

The Song Shul has a completely Covid 19-safe High Holy Day experience:
1. Only those who have registered in advance and who have completed the Covid 19 Screening Form will be admitted. (Screening Forms will be made available online 48 hours before the service.)
2. Be ready for on-site screening with forehead temperature monitors.
3. Creative seating bubbles will be arranged with appropriate distance between.
4. Masks are required (The Song Shul will provide masks for all in attendance).
5. Hand sanitizing stations will be available throughout the venue.
6. The washrooms will be traffic-controlled and sanitized after usage, and a cleaning plan for high-touch areas is in place.
7. We know you love to schmooze, but there’s no close mingling allowed before or after services.

What about the shofar?

In addition to hearing the shofar during the 2nd day service, The Song Shul will have a special outdoor Shofar-Blowing on Sunday, September 20th. Feel free to join us outside of the Meridian Arts Centre at 12:45 PM. (The service finishes at 12:30 but we allow time for people to exit carefully.) The shofar is loud so you can easily hear the blasts even while keeping your distance.

What about the machzor?

If you have your own prayer book, please bring it. We will also have copies of the Silverman machzor available at each service for 1-day use. There is no chance that what you touch will have been used by someone else the previous day.

So how do I register?

Easy! First, make sure you’re a member in good standing for the new year 5781 (2020-2021).
Click here to join as a new member.
Click here to renew your membership (and Welcome Back!).
Then. . . . allow 24 hours and click here to log into our new portal to register for yourself or your family bubble.

What if I have more questions?

Contact us – The Song Shul has the friendliest and most helpful team you can imagine!
Phone: 416-789-0999 (9:00 AM – 12:00 noon)
Leave a message anytime or if the lines are busy
Barbara at
Mel at
Deana at

Please note: This coming year, all of The Song Shul services (High Holy Days, Festivals, Shabbat) are for Members Only. Join us and enjoy being part of our incredible Community in Harmony all year long!