About the Audio Bible
The JPS TANAKH: The Jewish Bible, audio version is a recorded version of the JPS TANAKH, the most widely read English translation of the Hebrew (the Jewish) Bible. Produced and recorded for The Jewish Publication Society (JPS) by The Jewish Braille Institute (JBI), this complete, unabridged audio version features over 60 hours of readings by 13 narrators.
The goal was to make our Bible available to the blind and visually impaired. And we wanted to have others be able to experience the Bible as it was originally communicated – orally. The sounds of the Hebrew names for places and people are rich and filled with nuance, and through the spoken word you can truly appreciate the cadences and word patterns that infuse the biblical language. Your ears pick up meanings that your eyes might miss.
Audio Bible Narrators
The readers include stage and TV actors, radio personalities, teachers, and voiceover talents, as well as special guest speakers. There are many voices contributing to the recording, just as there are many “voices” in the Bible itself – female and male, young and old, bold and gently, bringing to it experiences and innocence, inquisitiveness and wonder.
Below are biographical summaries of all the narrators.
How to Obtain the Audio Bible
JPS Audio Bible products are available for purchase or by subscription from the following audio book vendors: Audible, iTunes, Scribd, TuneIn, Playster, and 24Symbols. JPS Audio Bible products are also available through the audiobook services of most public libraries and K12 schools.
You may choose the entire Tankah, or individual books of the Torah, Writings or Prophets—whatever best suits your needs. There are 39 products to choose from.
The Audio Bible is available for free to eligible visually impaired and blind individuals from the JBI Library (Jewish Braille Institute). Please contact JBI at Library@jbilibrary.org or call 800-433-1531.
The Weekly Torah Portion
JPS is pleased to provide free access to the audio version of the weekly reading, along with a pdf download of the printed text, so you can read along as you listen.
|Theodore Bikel has appeared in several London plays including A Streetcar Named Desire under the direction of Sir Laurence Olivier. His U.S. stage performances include The Sound of Music (in which he created the role of Baron von Trapp), The Sunshine Boys, My Fair Lady, and Fiddler on the Roof—he has played the role of Tevye more than 2,000 times. Bikel has made more than 35 films, including The African Queen, The Russians are Coming, and The Defiant Ones, for which he received an Academy Award nomination. Bikel has also starred in many TV shows and received an Emmy Award in 1988. He is an accomplished concert artist and storyteller, and has recorded 20 albums.|
|Bruce Feiler is The New York Times bestselling author of nine books, includingWalking the Bible, Abraham, America’s Prophet, and The Council of Dads, as well as the host of “Walking the Bible” on PBS. He has written for The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, and Gourmet, where he won three James Beard Awards. He is a frequent contributor to NPR, CNN, and Fox News. Feiler has been the subject of a Jay Leno joke and a JEOPARDY! Question, and his face appears on a postage stamp in the Grenadines. For more information, please visit www.brucefeiler.com.|
|For her work on Broadway—from Yentl, Saravá, and Lend Me a Tenor to Golda’s Balcony and Irena’s Vow—Tovah Feldshuh has earned four Tony nominations for Best Actress and won four Drama Desk, four Outer Critics Circle, the Obie, the Theatre World, and the Lucille Lortel Awards. Her films include Kissing Jessica Stein, A Walk on the Moon, Lady in the Water, and the soon-to-be-released Buddy Gilbert Comes Alive, Acts of Mercy, and Ten Stories Tall. Feldshuh has earned two Emmy nominations: one for her portrayal of Helena in the mini-series Holocaust, and one for her work on Law & Order. Visit www.tovahfeldshuh.com.|
|Lisa Ann Kirsch is the Manager of Audio Production at JBI. She is honored to have worked on a project of such scope, diversity, and importance, and she credits her narrators, editors, and production team with bringing this material to life.|
|A Graduate of Columbia University and the Jewish Theological Seminary, Harold Kushner is Rabbi Laureate of Temple Israel in Natick, MA. He is best known for his internationally bestselling work, When Bad Thing Happen to Good People, which has been translated into fourteen languages. Kushner has penned six other bestsellers, including The Lord Is My Shepherd, Conquering Fear, and When All You’ve Ever Wanted Isn’t Enough (Winner – Christopher Medal). With novelist Chaim Potok, he is the co-author of the new Conservative commentary on the Torah, Etz Hayim. Kushner has also be nominated twice for the Templeton Prize—the equivalent to the Nobel Prize for Religion.|
|Award winning and trailblazing broadcast journalist Marciarose Shestack was the first woman in America to anchor a prime time daily news program in a major market (Philadelphia). She was also a documentary film maker, arts editor, movie and theatre critic, and talk show host of the highly rated Marciarose Show. She wrote the column “Marciarose” for the Philadelphia Inquirer and is the subject of one chapter of the book Indelible Images: Women of Local Television. Her long-running television career included hosting the Sunday show and numerous programs for PBS.|
|Michael Bernstein is an actor whose credits include roles such as Robert in Robert D. James and Lazer in Pro-Black Sheep (Roxbury Film Festival 2009), as well as appearances in Celebrity Ghost Stories and The Onion News Network online. Michael performs improv and sketch with Punching Hal, has acted on stage with the Deptford Players and Inwood Shakespeare, and has narrated numerous books and magazines for JBI International. Michael was the Art Director for Frank The Rat and in 2007-2008 he made ten films in ten weeks.|
|Norma Fire z”l has been recording books for many years. On stage, she’s performed in Uncivil Wars, Three Viewings, Bed No Breakfast, Comfort Food, Three Tall Women, The Book Club, Wintertime, and The Golem. Regional productions include The First Picture Show , The School For Scandal, Hamlet, The Comedy of Errors , in 20 productions at Actors Theatre St. Paul, as well as a recurring role as Judge Jensen on Law & Order. Films include “The Producers, The Musical” and “Robot Stories”.|
|Kathy Ford has recorded over a dozen books for the JBI Library. She studied commercial voiceover with Emmy-award-winning voiceover artist, Drew Birns, and acting with Allen Schoer, Director of The TAI Group. Her credits include improvisation work for the American Medical Review Board/Kaplan Group, minor roles in independent films and television, and several off-off Broadway stage productions. Ford also has experience as a human resources executive for major banking and consulting firms, as well as eight years as a substitute teacher in New Jersey public schools.|
|M.D. Laufer grew up in Crown Heights and attended several yeshivas, making him a human melting pot of Jewish Orthodox influence. He currently serves as a gabbai and board member of his local Young Israel Congregation.|
|Elizabeth London is an actor, director and Shakespeare teaching artist based in New York. She has appeared Off-Broadway, regionally around the country, internationally with the Shakespeare Revue Company, and live in the web series “35”. London has recorded audiobooks and audioplays, including directing/playing Portia in Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice for JBI International, voicing in Newberry Award-winning “The Giver,” spoken-word on singer-songwriter Peter Mulvey’s Deep Blue, and English dubbing for Knight Hunters and Berserk. Elizabeth holds a BFA from NYU Film and has trained with SITI and BADA. Member, Actors’ Equity Association.|
|Francie Anne Riley loves to tell a good story and feels honored and blessed to have had the opportunity to record such a great work alongside such wonderful colleagues. While her voice can be heard on many commercials and narrations, her favorite projects have always been story- based. She says that the opportunity to record audio books gladdens her heart and fills her soul with joy.|
|A NY-trained actor, Jonathan Roumie currently lives in Los Angeles working as an actor in film, TV & voiceover. Jonathan is very proud to have been a part of the recording of the JPS TANAKH; as it was a personal, spiritual joy for him. Some of his other voiceover credits include characters on Nick jr.’s animated children’s series, “Wonderpets!”; three seasons of impressions and characters on MTV’s Celebrity Deathmatch, and numerous commercials and promos for both radio & television. For more information, visit www.JonathanRoumie.com.|