Azi grew up in a traditional community in Israel. His grandfather, also a cantor, inspired Azi to pursue his passion and inclination for singing and music. After graduating from Tel Aviv Cantorial Institute and studying under the top cantors in the world, Azi continued studying music with a Masters in Classical Singing and Conducting from Mannes School of Music.
This journey brought Azi to New York, where he leads Park Avenue Synagogue (PAS), the largest Conservative community in NYC and the flagship of Jewish liturgical music in North America. As PAS Music Center’s Director, Cantor Schwartz creates, records, and publishes new liturgical music, as well as hosts world-class guest artists for concerts and worship.
Passionate to bring Jewish liturgy to the broader world, Azi has performed at Carnegie Hall, the United Nations, Madison Square Garden, the US Capitol Rotunda, and the Israeli Knesset. In 2018, Azi was featured in a PBS special titled, “The New York Cantors,” which brought cantorial music to millions of viewers across the US and in Europe. During Pope Francis’ visit to New York in October 2015, Cantor Schwartz represented the Jewish people at the multi-religious service at the National September 11 Memorial & Museum. He plays the cantor’s role in Richard Gere’s movie ‘Norman’, and performs in concerts and interfaith missions around the world. Azi has an astounding online following. He has released nine studio albums containing traditional and newly commissioned jewish liturgical music.
Dedicated to cultivating the next generation of cantors, Azi serves on faculty of all major cantorial schools, and serves as Treasurer for the Cantors’ Assembly, the largest professional organization for cantors. Azi is married to Dr. Noa Schwartz, and they have four children.