Walk into 770 during the month of Adar after the evening Seder Chassidus, and you’ll be greeted by a wondrous sight: dozens of Bochurim joyously dancing to Chassidishe, lebedike music that is blaring forth from the center of 770.
Enchanted, instead of questioning what the celebration is about, you’d happily partake in the animated happiness, after all, who wouldn’t wish to benefit from the lifted spirits that inevitably flow from joining in a chassidishe tentzl with the Rebbe’s Temimim?
This year’s nightly dancing will begin Monday night, Rosh Chodesh Adar, and continue each night of Adar.
So, what is the celebration about? It first began on Shushan Purim Katan, 5752, in the wake of the Rebbe’s Talk some days prior, on Parshas Teruma, 5752, wherein the Rebbe encouraged additional acts of joy and merriment, as befitting the month of Adar.
On the twenty-first of Adar, 5752, the organizers merited a positive response from the Rebbe that went beyond all expectations: “It should be a continuing endeavor, and with addition; I’ll mention it at the Ohel [of the Frierdiker Rebbe].”
But only the next year, in 5753, did the dancing really kick off. Rabbi Yekusial Menachem Rapp, OB”M, managed to organize live music to accompany the singing of Yechi when the Rebbe came out on the balcony. The Rebbe looked to the musician multiple times, while strongly encouraging the singing with his holy head and hand. Since then, Rabbi Rapp ensured a live band for each time the Rebbe came out to the balcony, which became a permanent fixture during those days.
(Incidentally, later, Dr. Eli Rosen, who was often by the Rebbe during those years, would relate that in the years 5752-5754 he constantly heard the Rebbe say “b’shira v’zimra,” with song and hymns – often, those were the only words he was able to understand from the Rebbe…)
Joyously serving Hashem has always been a fundamental pillar of Chassidus generally, and Chabad Chassidus in particular. In Dor Hashvi’I, the Rebbe attributed increased importance to the path of joy.
Over the years, the Rebbe favorably referred to the phenomenon of dancing for the sake of adding in joy that will bring Moshiach. In 5748, Parshas Ki Teitzei, the Rebbe said that through adding in joy for the sake of joy – not necessarily only when fulfilling a Mitzvah – Moshiach will come, adding an unusual phrase: “let them try, and it will be proven!”. “Simcha B’Taharasa”, pure, unconditional joy, will bring Moshiach. With regard to Simchas Beis Hashoeiva, the Rebbe said that if someone askes “why are you dancing? What’s the great merriment?” the obvious answer is “Haven’t you heard? It’s been printed in all the newspapers that Moshiach is coming any minute now!”
But the month of Adar was specifically a time for great joy. About the joy in Adar, the Rebbe said: “To add on each day in happiness, and to ‘Shturem’ about this to the entire world.” Additionally, when in 5752 ‘Mateh Moshiach’ reported to the Rebbe about their activities, the Rebbe responded: “The time is opportune to increase in joy in a double measure [—] “sixty days” [of Adar] I’ll mention it at the Ohel [of the Frierdiker Rebbe].”
With this, the Rebbe was alluding to his earlier Talks about the significance of a year with two Adars. The Rebbe explained that the sixty days of Adar should be consumed with extra joy, and that will nullify any not-good influences or decrees C”V in the sixty days of Adar’s Joy, as per the halachic principle of “Batel B’shishim,” nullifying in sixty.
Considering it his personal Shlichus (in addition to the many other activities, like the Chabad presence at the Airport, the El-Al Executives, Shleimus Ha’aretz, etc.), for many years, Rabbi Rapp would organize, oversee, and participate in the nightly Adar dancing, personally ensuring a Purim’dike atmosphere.
For those tired and sweating from the incessant dancing, Rabbi Rapp would, with his famous heart-melting smile, say with them a L’chaim, provide cold drinks and Farbaisen, and urge them on with his oft-repeated refrain heard from the Rebbe: “B’rov shira v’zimra,” with much song and hymn.
The nightly dancing is partly arranged in honor of Mushka bas Reizel Rivka.
Sponsorship opportunities are still available for the tremendous Brachos from this great Zchus. Whether for a Refuah Shlaima, a Shidduch, etc, or for increased health, wealth, and Chassidishe Nachas, the spiritual benefits from facilitating something the Rebbe strongly encouraged cannot be underestimated.
To sponsor, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 347-645-7856.