KAISER, ALOIS (1840–1908), ḥazzan and composer. Born in Hungary, Kaiser sang as a boy with Salomon *Sulzer. From 1859 to 1863 he was ḥazzan in Vienna, then went to Prague and three years later to the U.S. where he officiated until his death at the Oheb Shalom Congregation in Baltimore. Kaiser's intention in his compositions and arrangements was to provide music for the American synagogue, based on the traditional melodies but stripped of all "unnecessary ornamentation." With William Sparger he was responsible for the first edition of the Union Hymnal (1897) for the Conference of American Rabbis and edited A Collection of the Principal Melodies of the Synagogue from the Earliest to the Present (1893).
Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.