DISTANT COUSINS COMES HOME
Distant Cousins is an L.A.-based folk/pop trio with strong Jewish and local roots. Dov Rosenblatt, former lead singer of Blue Fringe (Disclosure: His father is this paper’s editor/publisher), and Ami Kozak graduated from a day school in Teaneck. Duvid Swirsky (Moshav band) grew up in Israel on the moshav founded and influenced by Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach. Having met years ago when their bands often overlapped, the three formed Distant Cousins in 2013 and their music has been featured in films like “This Is Where I Leave You,” Macy’s commercials, movie trailers for “Daddy’s Home” and “How to Train Your Dragon 3,” and on numerous TV shows. Their new album, “Next of Kin” (Jullian Records), was released last month. The review from Hollywood’s famous record store, Amoeba Records, described it as “filled with infectious hooks and floor-stompin’ riffs … Basically it’s the sound of your new favorite band.” — Wednesday, Feb. 27, 9 p.m., Debonair Music Hall, Teaneck; Thursday, Feb. 28, 8 p.m., Rockwood Music Hall, Distantcousinsofficial.com.
Noted for her “glowing, burnished tone” (The Washington Post), cellist Inbal Segev performs solo cello works by five prominent female composers: Missy Mazzoli, Reena Esmail, Anna Clyne, Gity Razaz and Kaija Saariaho. The program’s focal point, “Legend of Sigh,” is a new multimedia piece for cello and electronics written for Segev by Razaz, with video and projection design by filmmaker Carmen Kordas. It explores birth, transformation and death through the retelling of an old Azerbaijani folktale. — Thursday, Feb. 28, 8 p.m., Roulette Intermedium Brooklyn, 509 Atlantic Ave., Brooklyn, (917) 267-0363, roulette.org.
ONE. ONE & ONE
Choreographed by Noa Wertheim and set to a powerful score by Avi Belleli, the noted Israeli dance company Vertigo performs “One. One & One.” Unfolding on a dirt-covered stage, the work creates a sensory experience as it explores the individual’s desire for wholeness and spiritual connection to the natural world. The Jerusalem Post described it as “freer and fresher than ever.” — Tuesday-Wednesday, March 5-6, 7:30 p.m., Baryshnikov Arts Center, 450 W. 37th St., (646) 731-3200, bacnyc.org
TOVAH FELDSHUH IS LEONA HELMSLEY
Tovah Feldshuh, six-time Tony- and Emmy-nominated television and stage star, performs highlights from the new Broadway-bound musical “Queen of Mean.” Based on the similarly titled best-selling biography by Piers Ransdell. — On select dates between Friday, Feb. 22 and Tuesday, Feb. 26, 54 Below, 254 W 54th St., (646) 476-3551, 54below.com.
ISAAC MIZRAHI: I.M.
The fashion icon offers a candid look back on his life with the release of his memoir, “I.M. Isaac Mizrahi.” In conversation with Debra Messing (“Will & Grace”), Mizrahi will recount growing up gay in a sheltered Syrian Jewish Orthodox family, his rise, fall, and reinvention in the world of haute couture and his foray into musical cabaret. To celebrate the launch of his memoir, this will be Mizrahi’s only New York appearance and will include a special musical performance. A book signing will follow. — Tuesday, Feb. 26, 7 p.m., Symphony Space, 2537 Broadway, (212) 864-5400, symphonyspace.org
YIDDISH FIDDLER, OFF BROADWAY
“Fiddler” in Yiddish, the unexpected runaway hit that both delighted and choked up audiences at Museum of Jewish History, is now Off-Broadway. Directed by the acclaimed Joel Grey, a rich Yiddish translation by the late Shraga Friedman adds new depth to the iconic musical. With English and Russian supertitles. — Stage 42, 422 W. 42nd St., (212) 239-6200, Telecharge.com.
EAST AND WEST
Celebrating the 121st birthday of Yiddish theater and film star Molly Picon, this screening of the silent classic “East and West” (1923) is accompanied by a live score performed by clarinetist Michael Winograd and featuring the composer of the original score for the 1991 re-mastered film, Pete Sokolow. — Sunday, March 3, 4 p.m., Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 294-8301, cjh.org.
PROSECUTING EVIL: THE EXTRAORDINARY WORLD OF BEN FERENCZ
A portrait of Ben Ferencz, the last surviving Nuremberg Trial prosecutor, who continues to wage his lifelong crusade in the fight for justice. — Friday, Feb. 22 – Thursday, Feb. 28, Cinema Village, 22 E. 12th St., (212) 924-3363, cinemavillage.com.
THE AMERICAN SEPHARDI MUSIC FESTIVAL
Created and directed by Sephardic opera singer-arranger David Serero, this three-day festival features concerts by world-class musicians who reflect the rich mosaic of Greater Sephardic culture. — Sunday-Tuesday, Feb. 24-Thursday, Feb. 26, 6 p.m., Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 294-8301, cjh.org.
LIOR MILIGER’S FREE IMPROV TRIO
Since his 2015 move to New York, the Israeli-American sax player, composer and improviser has been making a name for himself as an avant-garde player with deep roots in the jazz tradition, ancient Jewish music and Israeli folklore. He fronts a band with bassist Zach Swanson and drummer Joe Hertenstein. — Sunday, Feb. 24, 6 p.m. doors, 7:30 p.m. concert, Rockwood Music Hall Stage 3, 196 Allen St., rockwoodmusichall.com.
Bringing traditional Yemenite prayers and melodies into the world of funk, soul, blues and jazz, the ensemble Yemen Blues — “a band that must be on your radar, regardless of your preference for genre” (DownBeat) — occupies a unique world music perch. This performance features the pared-down crew of Kahalani, percussionist Rony Irwyn and bassist/oudist Shanir Blumenkranz. — Sunday, Feb. 24, 8 p.m., Brooklyn Bowl, 61 Wythe Ave., Brooklyn, brooklynbowl.com.
The Israeli-American bass player has gigged with multi-Grammy Award-winner Billy Childs, DownBeat award-winning saxophonist Eli Degibri and noted pianist Johnny O’Neal. He leads his own trio in Smalls’ after-hours session. — Sunday, Feb. 24, 1-4 a.m., Smalls Jazz Club, 183 W. 10th St., (646) 476-4346, smallslive.com.
AMOS HOFFMAN TRIO
Acclaimed as an ethno-jazz fusion pioneer, the Israeli-born oudist/guitarist/composer plays modern jazz with a heavy, heady Middle Eastern accent. — Wednesday – Thursday, Feb. 27-28, 10:30 p.m. – 1 a.m., Smalls Jazz Club, 183 W. 10th St., (646) 476-4346, smallslive.com.
THE LAND OF ISRAEL
Israeli singer Ariella Edvy and the MusicTalks Ensemble embark on a musical journey through Israel’s diverse sites and environments. Through an array of site-specific songs, host Elad Kabilio offers a fresh auditory experience of Israel’s landscapes. — Monday, March 4, 7 p.m., Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 294-8301, cjh.org.
Daniel Gwirtzman — producer, director, educator, filmmaker and dancer — marks 20 years as a New York choreographer and company director. His diverse repertory has earned praise for its humor, stylistic versatility, musicality, charisma and accessibility. “Mr. Gwirtzman does know that in dance less can be more. And that’s a good thing for any choreographer to know,” wrote The New York Times. Gwirtzman sifts through two decades of repertory (“Tribe,” “The Oracle,” etc.) for this anniversary show. — Friday-Saturday, Feb. 22-23, 8 p.m., 92nd Street Y, 1395 Lexington Ave., 92y.org.
HOW TO FIGHT ANTI-SEMITISM
New York Times columnist and Pittsburgh native Bari Weiss has become known for her insightful, passionate columns about the resurgence of anti-Semitism. What she most often hears from readers is: What can we do about it? — Monday, Feb. 25, 7 p.m., Temple Emanu-El Streicker Center, 1 E. 65th St., (212) 507-9580, emanuelstreickernyc.org.
ANTI-SEMITISM IN THE UNITED STATES
In the wake of the attack on Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life Synagogue, anti-Semitism in America fosters debate. To what extent is America different from diaspora countries? Do more recent events warrant a change in our understanding, or is this part of longer patterns? Historians Lila Corwin Berman, Tony Michels and Jonathan Sarna debate. Documents and images from the AJHS archives will punctuate the conversation. — Wednesday, Feb. 27, 7 p.m., Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 294-8301, cjh.org.
TELLING OUR STORIES: DISCUSSING CONTEMPORARY JEWISH FICTION
Award-winning authors Rachel Kadish (“The Weight of Ink”), Pam Jenoff (“The Kommandant’s Girl”) and Naomi Novik (the “Temeraire series”) discuss how their Jewish background, beliefs, culture and experiences contribute to their narrative voices and shape the stories they tell. — Tuesday, Feb. 26, noon, 92nd Street Y, 1395 Lexington Ave.,92y.org.
TRANS JEWS ARE HERE
Author and Yeshiva University professor Joy Ladin speaks in conversation with Rabbi Mike Moskowitz, CBST scholar-in-residence for trans and Jewish studies, on Ladin’s new book, “The Soul of the Stranger: Reading God and Torah from a Transgender Perspective.” — Monday, Feb. 25, 6:30 p.m., Congregation Beit Simchat Torah, 130 W. 30th St., (212) 929-9498, csbt.org.
Israeli-American artist Daniel Rozin probes the relationship between the function of natural and mechanical structures. The exhibited works employ a combination of custom software and organic materials to mimic and interact with the viewer’s body in space. — Through March 17, Bitforms Gallery, 131 Allen St., (212) 366-6939, bitforms.art.
Just weeks after Kristallnacht (Nov. 9-10, 1938), the first group of Jewish refugee children arrived in the United Kingdom. The Leo Baeck Institute and the Yeshiva University Museum co-sponsor a new exhibition exploring this remarkable effort, one that saved some 10,000 children, many of whom never saw their parents again. — Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (800) 838-3006, cjh.org.
CLOSE ONE EYE
Israeli figurative painter Tirtzah Bassel’s second solo exhibition at Slag Gallery will feature a new body of work that includes both large- and small-scale oil paintings rooted in everyday life. — Through March 10, Slag Gallery Brooklyn, 56 Bogart St., Brooklyn, (212) 967-9818, slaggallery.com.
MARTHA ROSLER: IRRESPECTIVE
Brooklyn yeshiva-educated Martha Rosler is considered one of the strongest and most resolute artistic voices of her generation. (She has said that her Jewish education inspired her politics.) She skillfully employs diverse materials to address pressing matters of her time, including war, gender roles, gentrification, inequality and labor. From her feminist photomontages of the 1960s and ’70s to her large-scale installations, Rosler’s work reflects her enduring and passionate vision. — Through March 3, The Jewish Museum, 1109 Fifth Ave. (at 92nd Street), (212) 423-3200, thejm.org.
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