Miriam Brosseau, Networked musician/educator.
Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Miriam Brosseau, 28

Twitter: @miriamjayne, @stereosinai, http://stereosinai.com, www.thejewisheducationproject.org/,
http://mjbrosseau.tumblr.com/

Miriam Brosseau met her husband, Alan Jay Sufrin, freshman year at the University of Wisconsin, Madison at a campus open-mike night.

But it wasn’t until they created Stereo Sinai, a pop duo that combines Jewish texts with a “schizophrenic” blend of rock, hip-hop, reggae and other musical influences, that they were able to “do music together without killing each other,” she says. “We couldn’t write together in English.”

The young couple birthed Stereo Sinai almost five years ago, when they were living in Chicago and were regulars at Anshei Sholom B’nai Israel Congregation, a Modern Orthodox shul. When their rabbi, Asher Lopatin and his wife, Rachel Tessler, welcomed their fourth child, Brosseau and Sufrin decided to write a song in his honor.

For “Gideon’s Song,” the couple “looked at verses on Gideon from the Book of Judges, and we played with it — and then we kept going,” she says.

Two albums (“Biblegum Pop” and “The Revelation Will Not Be Televised”) later, Brosseau and Sufrin — who now live in Brooklyn — perform frequently, and their music has been featured in a G-dcast video and on a Craig Taubman compilation, and other places.

Describing Stereo Sinai as “musical midrash,” Brosseau says she and Sufrin “try to sneak a little ‘funJewcation’ in. We try to bring out the joy in all of it.”

When not making music, Brosseau works as social media coalitions manager at the Jewish Education Project and special projects coordinator at Darim Online.

A native of Racine, Wis., — a small city whose “claim to fame,” she says, is being the corporate headquarters of SE Johnson Wax, the makers of Pledge cleaning products, and an appearance in the film “A League of Their Own,” — Brosseau grew up shlepping to Milwaukee each week for Reform Sunday school.

A Jewish studies major in college, she briefly considered rabbinical school before opting instead for a Jewish professional studies master’s degree at Chicago’s Spertus Institute.

When Brosseau and Sufrin moved to New York last year, they “accidentally landed” in Crown Heights, the Chabad Lubavitch, Caribbean and increasingly hipster neighborhood, simply because it was the first place they found a suitable apartment in their price range. Although they live on “the non-Chabad side” of Eastern Parkway, the two are members of Chevra Ahavas Yisroel, an innovative Chabad congregation that incorporates the music of Shlomo Carlebach.

Roller queen: Brosseau spent 12 years as a competitive roller dancer, taking skating classes from the age of 5.

 

Associate Editor

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