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JPS Proudly Announces Groundbreaking Recording of Jewish Bible

October 14, 2009

Philadelphia, PA – For the first time ever, the new JPS translation of the Jewish Bible, the JPS Tanakh, is available in audio format. Produced and recorded for The Jewish Publication Society (JPS) by JBI International (est. as the Jewish Braille Institute) in JBI‘s New York City studios over the course of 12 months, this groundbreaking project – known as the JPS Tanakh: The Jewish Bible, audio version – features 60 hours of readings by 13 narrators.

JBI narrators included stage and TV actors, radio personalities, teachers, and voiceover talents. Special guest readers such as actor and singer Theodore Bikel, TV and Broadway actress Tovah Feldshuh, and best-selling authors Bruce Feiler and Rabbi Harold Kushner also contributed their talents.

“For many years JPS had been hoping to produce an audio version of its Bible. The 1917 JPS translation is in audio, but not the 1985 translation, which is the version everyone reads today,” says JPS COO and Publishing Director Carol Hupping.

“We were delighted when JBI agreed to record for us. It was the only organization we considered working with because of its new, state-of-the-art studios, and, more importantly, because of the expert care its staff would give to every aspect of production: the right mix of voices, timing, sound, and pronunciation of all those Hebrew names! Like so many important projects, the work was more involved than anyone anticipated. But it was worth it; the JPS Tanakh audio Bible is sure to become a classic.”

Beginning with the new cycle on the holiday of Simchat Torah, October 10th, JPS will feature free podcasts of the weekly Torah readings all year long on its website: http://www.jewishpub.org/books/audiobible/. In addition, the entire audio Bible will be available soon for purchase through the JPS website, Audible and iTunes, and through many public libraries’ online access programs.

JBI, the world’s largest library of talking books of Jewish interest for the visually impaired, blind, and reading-disabled of all ages and backgrounds, will offer the entire recording free to the visually impaired and blind. More information on the JBI Library is available at www.jbilibrary.org.

Funding for this recording was made possible through the generosity of Aaron Feingold, Dr. Seymour and June Kessler, and Norman and Edith Weisfeld.

JPS, a nonprofit organization, is the oldest publisher of Jewish works in English, including the JPS Tanakh.