Jordan Hurwitz has been rocking out to music at Camp Tawonga since she was a camper in 2002. Now in her 14th year at Camp, Jordan is one of our three talented songleaders. When asked why she wanted to return to work on staff, Jordan shared:
“I love Camp Tawonga because people not only accept, but celebrate others for their differences and it creates a loving community that will last me and everyone else a lifetime.”
Here is a short interview with Jordan about the very important role music plays at Camp:
What is your role as a songleader?
I, along with two other songleaders, lead song session every day after breakfast and dinner. During the day, I lead many types of different blocks including, but not limited to, campfires, song writing blocks, and blocks that fuse that love of music with the love of nature.
For example, we lead a block called “Tree Songs.” Every tree on Camp Tawonga’s property has an assigned number, so after we discuss the importance and gratitude we have for the trees with the kids, we find the tree number and flip to that number on the song book and serenade the trees.
Is there any specific Camp moment that inspired you to become a songleader?
During my last year as a camper, I volunteered with a couple of kids from each unit to help lead Shabbat services before dinner. When I was standing up there leading the prayer and joining together in song, I knew it was not the last time I wanted to be standing there doing that.
What’s your favorite part of your job?
I love when someone comes up to me and says, ‘I love that song’ or ‘can we sing together?’ and seeing them reach out to express their love for music. This is ultimately my goal as a songleader: to help others fall in love with music.
What’s the most inspiring aspect of your job?
I’m inspired by everyone else on staff and in this community because every day I’m learning how to best help kids express who they are and channel that expression into music.
What songs do kids request most?
The kids tend to love songs that intertwine dancing and hand movements with singing. They seem excited to sing along with almost every song in the Camp Tawonga songbook, but if I had to choose one, campers seem to like Country Roads because it’s expressing their love for their Camp: a place that is considered “home” to so many people.
Is there any specific Camp moment that changed you?
There have been so many it’s hard to name specifics. Every little thing our camp directors and staff say is with so much intention in order to allow every kid be completely involved and do their thing in the best way possible. Also my co, Eden, taught me there’s no one way to song lead. So watching everyone find their niche in what they do helps me find mine.
Is there anything else you would like to share about Camp Tawonga?
I want to tell them everything. Camp really changed my life. There’s a reason why I come back every summer. I’m the best version of myself when I’m here, and I’m surrounded by others who are the best version of themselves also.
And in my life outside Tawonga, I’m completely dedicated to music. So being able to fuse my passion with music with a place that makes me feel so comfortable and passionate is the dream job for me.
P.P.S. Check out last summer’s staff spotlight on Maya Abramson, who is once again our head songleader this year.
Check out these shots of Jordan in action below, and some from this morning’s Taste of Camp campers. As usual, this evening we’ll post lots more pictures of the kids from throughout the day.