NYC Jewish-y Events, May 25 – June 3


The 14th Street Y’s Jewish culture laboratory takes on issues of war and peace. Israeli-American saxophonist Tal Gur shares the stage with his father, a former Israeli Air Force navigator, to reconstruct a combat flight experience and probe the father-son relationship. Amy Handelsman presents theatrical excerpts from her memoir, which draws parallels between boxing training, Torah study and her romance with middleweight boxing champ and ordained Rabbi Yuri Foreman. And Jacob Siegel reads from his short story, “4711 Dreams of Jihad,” in which a video game player discovers he’s been helping develop a platform for government surveillance and military recruiting. — Thursday, May 31, 7:30 p.m., 14th Street Y, 344 E. 14th St., (212) 780-0800,


In the hit Israeli political thriller series “Fauda” (Chaos in Arabic), a top Israeli “snatch squad” agent comes out of retirement to hunt for a Palestinian militant he thought he’d killed. The show is an international hit, and a highly contested one: The BDS movement recently urged Netflix to drop the show, which triggered 50 top Hollywood execs to throw their support behind the streaming site. The second season streams on May 24; to celebrate the occasion, a screening of the first episode will be followed by a conversation with co-creators Lior Raz (also the show’s star) and Avi Issacharoff, who based the series on their own IDF experiences. — Wednesday, May 30, 7:30 p.m., 92nd Street Y, 1395 Lexington Ave.,


In what is thought to be the largest public event in the world to celebrate Israel, Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue will once again turn blue and white in honor of the Jewish state’s 70th birthday. Israeli flags, floats, marching bands and tens of thousands of marchers are the order of the day. This year’s performers include the Israeli pop star Ninet Tayeb; NYC-based Afro-Hebrew band Milk & Honeys;  NYC-based veteran rock/folk jam band SoulFarm; Jewish rapper Kosher Dillz; Lipa Schmeltzer and more.    Sunday, June 3, 11 a.m.- 4 p.m., start at Fifth Avenue and 57th Street,


Set in Seville, Mozart’s opera, “Don Giovanni,” shows the unsatisfying ends that await a sordid life of scheming and serial seduction. Starring baritone David Serero in the title role, the libretto was written by the Italian Sephardi Lorenzo da Ponte. — Friday, June 1, 3 p.m., Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 294-8301,

One of Israeli playwright Hanoch Levin’s enduring classics, this 1989 work begins with the hero shoving his sleeping wife out of bed in the middle of the night to blame her for the futility of their lives and announce that he’s leaving her. — Thursday-Sunday, May 24-27, 14th Street Y, 344 E. 14th St., (212) 780-0800,

Four ferocious female voices team up for an evening of resistance and political comedy. With Judy Gold, Maria Shehata and Gina Yashere and a comedic play by Susan Bernfield; directed by Pirronne Yousefzadeh. — Monday, June 4, 7:30 p.m., 14th Street Y, 344 E. 14th St., (212) 780-0800,



“Heading Home: The Tale of Team Israel” is the David-and-Goliath story of Israel’s national baseball team as it competes for the first time in the World Baseball Classic. Its roster includes many Jewish-American major leaguers, most with a tenuous relationship to Judaism, with few having ever set foot in Israel. Their odyssey takes them from the Holy Land, where they are hailed as modern-day Maccabees, to the tournament in South Korea. — Tuesday, May 29, 7-9 p.m., Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan, 334 Amsterdam Ave., (646) 505-4444, .

At 84, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has developed a breathtaking legal legacy while becoming an unexpected pop culture icon. A documentary from Betsy West and Julie Cohen, “RBG” explores Ginsburg’s unique life, career and legacy. Co-produced by Storyville Films and CNN Films. — In wide release.



Israeli-born jazz guitarist Gilad Hekselman has drawn praise for his “warm and clean guitar tone, clear articulation, crazily extended improvisational ideas” (The New York Times). He’s become an A-list standout. — Friday, May 25, 8:30 and 10 p.m., Cornelia Street Café, 29 Cornelia St., (212) 989-9319,

“The Israeli Chamber Project is that rarest of creatures: a band of world-class soloists that is not a muster of peacocks, but a hive mind in which egos dissolve and players think, breathe and play as one,” says Time Out New York. The award-winning group joins forces with American soprano Sarah Shafer to explore the lush lyricism of Franz Schubert and Samuel Barber. — Thursday, May 24, 7:30 p.m., Kaufman Music Center-Merkin Concert Hall, 129 W. 67th St., (212) 501-3330,


Brooklyn-born but a nomad at heart, Dahlia Dumont traveled the world from an early age, absorbing cultural and musical influences on her path. Her project, dubbed “The Blue Dahlia,” mixes Tex-Mex accordion with klezmer violin, old-time French swing, reggae and ska to create a new musical whole. Think of her as the klezmer Piaf. — Sunday, June 3, 11 a.m., City Winery, 155 Varick St., (212) 608-0555, $10.

The klezmery band Midwood traverses rock, avant-garde, free improvisation, classical and Romanian folk music. The group marks the release of their debut CD, “Out of the Narrows,” with a concert featuring Jake Shulman-Ment, violin; Yoshie Fruchter, electric guitar; Richie Barshay, drums and percussion; and special guest Eleonore Weill, vocals, flutes, hurdy-gurdy. — Thursday, May 31, 7 p.m., Museum at Eldridge Street, 12 Eldridge St., (212) 219-0302,


Art and travel writer Irene Shaland reports on her travels through Jewish history in Burma, India, China, Cuba and Cambodia. — Tuesday, May 29, 7 p.m., Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (800) 838-3006,

Jewish women were instrumental in shaping the women’s liberation movement of the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s. Yet historians and participants themselves have overlooked their contributions as Jews. This has left many vital questions unasked and unanswered — until now. Joyce Antler, author of “Jewish Radical Feminism,” will discuss the topic with Judith Rosenbaum (executive director of the Jewish Women’s Archive), Nona Willis Aronowitz (Splinter) and Dahlia Lithwick (Newsweek, Slate). — Thursday, May 31, 7 p.m., Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 294-8301,



Michal Rovner, a pioneering Israeli artist, addresses the fragility of human life through photography, film, installation and video. Often relating her art to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Rovner uses historical objects and symbols from both sides, then alters them beyond recognition until they lose their original meaning. Her new solo show, “Evolution,” features a collection of older video works and prints, as well as new works and a major video installation. — Through June 23, Pace Gallery, 537 W. 24th St., (212) 421-3292,

Curated by Emily Lambert and designed by The Studio Art program at Stern College for Women, this exhibit features a selection of works by this year’s graduating studio art majors. — Through Aug. 8, Yeshiva University Museum at the Center for Jewish History, (212) 294-8330/8805, RSVP to


This exhibition features more than 30 paintings of Chaim Soutine depicting hanging fowl, beef carcasses and rayfish. Considered one of the 20th century’s great still-life painters, Soutine created visceral, expressionist paintings of tortured animal carcasses, establishing a parallel between the animal and human, beauty and pain.  The New Yorker hailed the exhibition as “potent … timely … elegantly curated.” — Through Sept. 16, Jewish Museum, 1109 Fifth Ave., (212) 423-3200,

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