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Dyadic lessons were a prevalent form of instruction for cantors in the United States during the period of mass immigration up until the establishment of seminary-based schools of sacred music in the decade after the World War II. Dyadic lessons offered an opportunity for novice singers to learn skills related to the cantorial craft, especially the knowledgeable interpretation of cantorial scores. In this essay, I offer an ethnography of a lesson I took with elder Cantor Julius Blackman in San Francisco in 2016. The description of the lesson serves as a frame for a discussion of the history of cantorial pedagogy in America and the specific ideologies associated with cantorial performance that pedagogues impart in the frame of the lesson.