NYC Jewish-y Events, October 6-17


The Top Three

Israeli-American cellist Inbal Segev, whom the Washington Post has praised for her “glowing, burnished tone,” joins forces with Juho Pohjonen — a Finnish pianist acclaimed for his “impeccable technique and a clear-eyed approach to music” (Atlanta Journal Constitution) — in a program of Romantic chamber works by Chopin, Schumann and Grieg. The concert takes place in the scenic venue of a floating barge at the foot of the Brooklyn Bridge. — Saturday, Oct. 7, 8 p.m., Bargemusic, Fulton Ferry Landing, 1 Water St., Brooklyn, (800) 838-3006, x1, Brown Paper Tickets. 


Israel has made a name for itself as a nation of innovative and resourceful thinkers, leading in out-of-the-box solutions for everything from water preservation to high-tech. But when it comes to the 60-year-old Israeli-Palestinian conflict, creative thinking seems to have hit a wall, for Israelis and Palestinians alike. Is there really no solution except for the two-state solution? And if the road to two states is blocked, is there really no other way forward but occupation or war? Featuring candid interviews with major Israeli and Palestinian leaders, government officials and thinkers, the documentary “Surviving Peace” re-examines the core issues driving the conflict and proceeds to challenge conventional wisdom about both its underlying causes and possible solutions. A Q&A with Director Josef Avesar follows the screenings.— Friday and Saturday, Oct. 6 -7, 7:10, Cinema Village, 22 E. 12th St., (212) 924-3363,


Along with jazz musicians, modern dance troupes have become one of Israel’s main cultural exports. Choreographer and dancer Roy Assaf — “one of the major emerging choreographic voices on our dance stages,” according to the Jerusalem Post — and his troupe make their New York debut at Baryshnikov Arts Center (BAC) with a double bill featuring Assaf’s “Six Years Later” and “The Hill.” A bracing duet, “Six Years” was hailed for its “beauty, nuances, and intricate, astute movements” (Jerusalem Post); the forceful all-male trio piece “The Hill” was inspired by a battle that took place in Jerusalem during the Six-Day War. The similarly titled famous Hebrew folk-ballad, “Givat Hatchmoshet” (The Ammunition Hill), serves as both music and narration for this piece. — Thursday and Friday, Oct. 12-13, Baryshnikov Arts Center (BAC), 450 W. 37th St., (866) 811-4111,


Is there a young Jewish still hidden in an old castle? Set in 1947, Mira J. Spektor’s ghostly post-Holocaust chamber opera tackles illusion, reality, love, betrayal, death and hope. Based on a true story and an Israeli play by Lea Goldberg. —  Opens Friday, Oct. 6, Opera America, 330 Seventh Avenue, Seventh Floor, (212) 796-8620,


UCB Theatre, home of the alternative comedy troupe Upright Citizens Brigade, is staging an entirely improvised episode of “Seinfeld” starring a group of talented lookalikes. — Friday, Oct. 6, 7:30 p.m., UCB Theatre Chelsea, 307 W. 26th St., (212) 366-9176,


Hazan is a young Israeli newcomer, fresh off the boat, trying his luck in love and business in New York. After a decade of living in the city, his blind date, Maya — an Israeli-American would-be actress — is too just American for him. She is still too Israeli for her American dates, though. Exploring everything from Israeli-Americans (lack of) dating etiquette to their frustration with American customer service, bureaucracy and (lack of) spontaneity, this rom-com is a comprehensive guide to the Israeli-American conundrum. — Tuesday, Oct. 10, 8 p.m., Broadway Comedy Club, 318 W. 53rd St., (212) 757-2323,


In the hit Israeli film, the Alexandria Ceremonial Police Orchestra travels to Israel from Egypt for a concert, ending up in the wrong place and bonding with local Israelis in the process. David Yazbek’s musical of the same name and based on the film won the 2017 Obie for Best Musical. Now it’s coming to Broadway after a sold-out Off-Broadway run. — Previews begin Saturday, Oct. 7 (opening Nov. 9), Barrymore Theatre, 243 W. 47th St.,,


 Ayad Akhtar, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of “Disgraced,” presents a play which starts out with a Muslim and Jewish couple discussing identity over dinner and turns to investment banking in “Junk.” It stars Steven Pasquale as Robert Merkin, a financial kingpin of the ’80s (a la Michael Milken) who attempts to take over an iconic American manufacturing company, changing all the rules in the process. A financial civil war follows, pitting magnates against workers, lawyers against journalists, and ultimately, everyone against themselves. — Previews begin Sept. 14 (opening is Oct. 12), Vivian Beaumont Theater at Lincoln Center, 150 W. 65th St.,


This Philip Wharam and Tim Marriott play follows the Holocaust’s “Angel of Death,” the notorious Dr. Josef Mengele, into his fictional retirement. The play takes place in 1979, on a beach in Brazil, where an elderly man is washed ashore after suffering a seizure during his morning swim. On the shore, he is confronted by a local woman who he assumes had saved him. Flattered and entranced by her, Mengele reveals his identity and proceeds to try to justify his horrific acts. Part of the Fringe Festival. — On select dates through Oct. 22, SoHo Playhouse, 15 Vandam St., (212) 691-1555,

“Lili Marlene” was the title of a World War II-era German song that became popular with both the Axis and the Allies. Set in pre-WWII Berlin, this similarly titled Off-Broadway musical (with book and music by Michael Antin) centers on the fictional character of Rosie Pen (Amy Londyn), a Jewish cabaret singer whose rendition of the song makes it famous. With Nazism on the rise, Rosie’s unlikely love affair with a young German count named Willi (Clint Hromsco) drives them both to seek ways out of the country. — Tuesdays through Dec., 7 p.m., St. Luke’s Theatre, 308 W. 46th St., (212) 239-6200,


Israeli-born jazz guitarist Gilad Hekselman, 34, has carved out a niche for himself with his “distinctive lyricism and easily embraceable artfulness, which seems to reach beyond his years” (All About Jazz). “A list” guitarist Peter Bernstein has been a pillar of the NYC jazz scene for years, a soloist with chops to spare. The two, along with drummer Colin Stranahan, will perform a selection of jazz standards and originals. — Saturday, Oct. 14, 8:30 and 10:30 p.m., Cornelia Street Café, 29 Cornelia St., (212) 989-9319, $20, drinks included.


Downtown legend John Zorn, the forward-thinking saxophonist, composer, improvisational maestro and avid promoter of experimental music — is, above all, maniacally prolific. In 2015, during the 61 days between March and May, Zorn wrote 300 new compositions, which he collected in a book of music called “The Bagatelles” (a bagatelle is a short instrumental composition). In what has since become an annual tradition, 20 different ensembles will perform 100 compositions from the book, in a two-day marathon concert. — Friday and Saturday, Oct. 6-7, 7:30 p.m., NYU Skirball Center, 566 LaGuardia Pl., (212) 992-8484,


Considered “a band of world class soloists” (Time Out NY), the ICP — comprised of winds, harp and piano — celebrates its 10th anniversary with an arrangement of Stravinsky’s “Soldier’s Tale” Suite, in which the three musicians narrate the story. The program also includes works by Mozart, Schumann and Yinam Leef. — Saturday, Oct. 7, 7:30 p.m., Kaufman Music Center-Merkin Concert Hall, 129 W. 67th St., (212) 501-3330,

A lawyer turned singer and pianist whose specialty is bracing bebop, Glaser provides “an unusually humorous and lighthearted approach to jazz singing” (AllMusic). He’ll be performing jazz standards and originals with Nate Brown on bass and Peter Traunmueller on drums. — Sunday, Oct. 8, 7:30, p.m., Jules Bistro, 65 St. Marks Pl., (212) 447- 5560,

Hosted by Israeli-American bassist-composer Or Bareket, Cornelia’s monthly jazz series features the Kadawa trio — Tal Yahalom on guitar, Almog Sharvit on bass and Ben Silashi on drums — which performs quirky, cross-media compositions drawing from jazz, rock, cinema and literature. Also, a trio consisting of Alon Albagli on guitar, Pablo Menares on bass and Daniel Dor on drums makes its debut gig running through a set of standards. — Sunday, Oct. 8, 8 p.m. Kadawa, 9:30 p.m. the Dor, Albagli and Menares Trio, Cornelia Street Café, 29 Cornelia St., (212) 989-9319, $20, drinks included.


At 22, jazz pianist Cohen, a former child prodigy, is quickly making a name for himself here. In his recent CD, “In the Element,” Cohen “makes a brash and bold musical statement on his debut as leader… [he is] musically mature beyond his years,” writes All About Jazz magazine. With Italian guitarist Antonio Caps. — Tuesday-Saturday, Oct. 10-14, 11:15 p.m., Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola, 10 Columbus Circle, (212) 258-9595,

Hershey Felder showcases the work of three of New York’s greatest Jewish composers — Gershwin, Berlin and Bernstein — in an old-fashioned sing-along. Join voices to classics from the “Fiddler,” “Oklahoma,” “West Side Story,” “Porgy & Bess” and many other timeless Broadway hits. — Monday, Oct. 16, 7:30 p.m., Temple Emanu-El Streicker Center, One E. 65th St., (212) 507-9580,



Noah Baumbach’s “The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)” is a very, very funny examination of a dysfunctional Jewish family that, as Baumbach noted in the press conference, “has replaced religion with art as a subject of worship.” Aging sculptor Harold (Dustin Hoffman) an all-but-forgotten minor talent, dominates and manipulates his children by several marriages — Danny (Adam Sandler), Matthew (Ben Stiller) and Jean (Elizabeth Marvel), each of whom feels he or she lets him down by not pursuing a life in the arts. Over several months, this ill-matched quartet, joined by Harold’s dotty current wife Maureen (an unrecognizable but delightful Emma Thompson) and various artist friends and rivals, works through the issues of family and death, failure and disappointment. — Opens nationwide in theaters Friday, Oct. 13



Superstar British/Israeli chef Ottolenghi has just published a new baking and desserts cookbook. Join him as he talks with celebrated food writer Ruth Reichl and his co-author, Helen Goh, about his show-stopping confections. A book signing follows. — Thursday, Oct. 12, 2017, 7:30 p.m., 92nd Street Y, 1395 Lexington Ave.,

May 2018 will mark seven decades since the establishment of the State of Israel. Shira Robinson, associate professor of history and international affairs at George Washington University, speaks about patterns of continuity and change in the politics and culture of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and on the ongoing clashes over its representation in academia and the American public. — Tuesday, Oct. 10, 5 p.m., The Hagop Kevorkian Center for Near Eastern Studies, 255 Sullivan St.,

Adolf Eichmann claimed he was “just following orders.” In 1957 the Israeli legal system established the concept of a “blatantly illegal order” to explain when a military or security-related order should — or must not — be followed. Professor Moshe Halbertal (Gruss Professor of Law at NYU and co-author of the Israeli Army Code of Ethics) will discuss command responsibility and the ethics of war with Brig. Gen. Cindy Jebb (dean of the academic board at the U.S. Military Academy, West Point). Moderated by Michael Walzer (Princeton professor emeritus of social science). — Sunday, Oct. 15, 2 p.m., Museum of Jewish Heritage, 36 Battery Place, (646) 437-4202,


Yiddish writer Rachmil Bryks was particularly well-known for his depictions of life inside the Lodz ghetto. His daughter, Bella Bryks-Klein, will speak — in Yiddish — about his life and work. For Yiddish speakers only. — Sunday, Oct. 15, 1:30 p.m., Sholem Aleichem Cultural Center, 3301 Bainbridge Ave., Bronx, (917) 930-0295,

“The Book Smugglers,” an epic chronicle of a little-known chapter in Jewish history, tells the story of the “Paper Brigade,” a Jewish resistance group that rescued thousands of rare books and manuscripts — first from the Nazis and then from the Soviets — by hiding them on their bodies, burying them in bunkers in the Vilna Ghetto and smuggling them across borders. The event will feature remarks by author David Fishman, a musical program featuring songs by Shmerke Kaczerginski, and a panel discussion with YIVO scholars. — Tuesday, Oct. 10, 7 p.m., Center for Jewish History, 15 W.16th St., (212) 294-8301,



Jointly conceived by artist Colin Davidson and the Oliver Sears Gallery, “Jerusalem” is comprised of 12 large-scale portraits of individuals — Jews, Muslims, Christians, a politician, a Benedictine monk, a doctor — who live or work in the ancient, mystical troubled city of Jerusalem. — On display Sept. 11-Nov. 14 (open to the public on select dates) 92nd Y’s Weill Art Gallery, 92nd Street Y, 1395 Lexington Ave.,

Ten years ago, the restoration of the Eldridge Street Synagogue was completed. After a 20-year, $20 million effort, the building was brought back from the verge of collapse to stand once again as a Jewish landmark. In celebration of that milestone, the Museum at Eldridge Street presents 45 large-scale photographs, dating from the 1970s to the present, of the synagogue in different stages of its transformation. — Opens Thursday, Sept. 14, 6 p.m., Museum at Eldridge Street, 12 Eldridge Street, Through March 1, 2018.

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