Friday, March 03, 2006

Davening styles

There's the ashkenaz nusach (order of prayer) which dates back at least 1000 years, and there is also the ashkenaz style which has developed over time. I define the ashkenaz style as follows:

- Saying or singing anim zemiros in front of an open ark.
- Adon olam at the end of shabbos musaf.
- Lecha dodi and kel adon sung congregationally, and not responsively.
- Kabalas shabbos led from the shulchan, not the omud.
- Yigdal after maariv on Friday night.
- Kiddush and havdalah in shul.
- Shaz (prayer leader) wears a talit at mincha and maariv.

I define the absence of these practices as the sefard style.

Most of the newer Ashkenaz shuls I've attended recently, daven the ashkenaz nusach, but in the sefard style. They skip anim zemiros, say lecha dodi responsively, and so on. The claim is that this combination is the "yeshivish style," but is this true?

In reference to the styles I've defined above, how do they daven at large ashkenazic insititutions like (1) Lakewood (2) Telz (3) Chaim Berlin (4) Chofetz Chaim (5) Yeshiva University (6) Ner Yisroel and (7) Skokie?