Jewish Journal

Calendar Girls picks and kicks for March 8 -15

by Dikla Kadosh

Posted on Mar. 7, 2008 at 5:00 pm

Shalom Hanoch

Shalom Hanoch


pick gifFor many Israelis, Shalom Hanoch (photo, above) is a living musical legend along the lines of Bob Dylan or Bruce Springsteen. The silver-haired, 60-something musician is widely credited as a founder of Israeli rock and has created a prolific body of work since he first picked up a guitar at age 12. Hanoch and supporting band mates Moshe Levy, Roni Peterson, Asher Fadi and Ziv Harpaz take a nostalgic trip through Hanoch's self-styled genre with "Shalom Hanoch Rocks L.A.," an event co-sponsored by Keshet Chaim and Teev. 8 p.m. $55-$100. Avalon Hollywood, 1735 N. Vine St., Hollywood. (818) 986-7332. http://www.kcdancers.org. Tickets also available through Steimatsky (818) 205-1650.

Israeli Rachel Levy and Palestinian Ayat al-Akhras had a lot in common. The teens, with similar dark hair and dark complexions, went to the same grocery store on March 29, 2002. But the similarities -- and their lives -- ended there. Levy, 17, was a victim of a suicide bombing, and Al-Akhras, 18, was the terrorist who carried out the attack. "To Die in Jerusalem" by Israeli filmmaker Hilla Medalia explores the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through these young women and their families' struggle to cope with the aftermath of their deaths. This screening, sponsored by the Temple Ahavat Shalom Judaism Beyond Our Boundaries committee. 8 p.m. $10 (temple members), $15 (general). TAS, 18200 Rinaldi Place, Northridge. (818) 360-2258. http://www.tasnorthridge.org.

Most men fear balding, but one would never imagine being terrorized by a growth that becomes a bulging yarmulke. In his award-winning short film, "The Metamorphosis," Ari Mark displays a vivid imagination as he spins off the famous Franz Kafka tale. When lead character Stan Leiber wakes up one morning and discovers the unusual growth, he ventures out to explore his hidden past and ends up in a synagogue. Told through the voice of a Holocaust survivor, the story is a reminder that we are all part of a larger life force, despite the enveloping pain it may cause. The film airs on the Sundance Channel, 9:45 p.m.

What do Burt Bacharach and "American Idol's" Justin Guarini have in common? "Blame It On Bacharach!" the 24th annual Southland Theatre Artists Goodwill Event (S.T.A.G.E.) brings together stage and screen talent for a revue featuring Broadway and pop works from the legendary entertainer. The performances of boisterous musical entertainment benefit AIDS Project Los Angeles. 8 p.m. Also March 9, 3 p.m. $50-$220. Wilshire Theatre Beverly Hills, 8440 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles. (866) 679-0958. http://www.stagela.com.

Purim is right around the corner, so don't forget to buy your tickets to "Purim on the Strip" at The Roxy Theatre, a citywide gathering sponsored by ATID, The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles' Young Leadership Division and other Jewish groups. Shake your groggers and your tushes while sipping cocktails and nibbling on hors d'oeurves and desserts. Please bring school supplies for the Gramercy Place Homeless Shelter. 8 p.m. $36 (online), $54 (at the door). The Roxy Theatre, 9009 W. Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood. (310) 481-3244. info@atidla.com.

Treat yourself to a double scoop of Jerry's -- one sweet and one tangy. For nine weeks, two of Jerry Mayer's staged works will appear at The Other Space at the Santa Monica Playhouse. After writing and producing for hit TV comedies like "All in the Family" and "The Facts of Life," Mayer turned to the stage. In "Black & Bluestein," an African American family in 1963 St. Louis wants to buy a home in a Jewish neighborhood, while "Dietrich & Chevalier -- the Musical" recounts the true romance of the Hollywood stars torn apart by World War II but later reunited. "Black & Bluestein" plays Saturdays starting March 8. "Dietrich & Chevalier" plays Sundays starting March 9. Through May 4. $25. Santa Monica Playhouse, 1211 Fourth St., Santa Monica. (800) 838-3006. http://www.santamonicaplayhouse.com.


pick gifAuthor and Jewish Journal columnist Gina Nahai possesses an important voice in the Iranian American community, and her experience as an Iranian Jew colors her novels with poignant social and political undertones. This immigrant experience is one facet of L.A. Jewry that the Autry Museum wants to represent in their upcoming exhibit on Los Angeles' populous and diverse Jewish community. Nahai will discuss "Creativity, Los Angeles and Its Persian Jewish Community" with Journal editor-in-chief Rob Eshman and sign copies of her newest book, "Caspian Rain." 2 p.m. Free with advance reservation. Autry National Center, Heritage Court, 4700 Western Heritage Way, Los Angeles. (323) 667-2000 or egreenberg@autrynationalcenter.org. http://www.autrynationalcenter.org.

Technological innovations can make possibilities seem limitless. Author Corinne Heather Copnick relates her single daughter's experiences with assisted reproduction in her first book, "Cryo Kid: Drawing a New Map." Copnick, a 70-something grandmother, explores the changing definition of family in the 21st century and the infertility crisis experienced by career women who wait too long to have children. 2 p.m. Free. Dutton's Brentwood Books, 11975 San Vicente Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 476-6263. http://www.duttonsbrentwood.com.

If you're ready to satisfy that deep craving to dig into your family's history and discover long-buried details about that great-grandmother who was a Maori Jew from New Zealand, then you need to learn the twists and turns of navigating Internet resources. In a one-day seminar, "It's Online! Internet Sleuthing for the Family Genealogist," Pamela Weisberger of the Jewish Genealogical Society of L.A. will reveal the secrets of sifting through online archives, periodicals and record databases. Guest presenters will explain how to access and use prison records, national archives and historical documents to aid you in your search. 1:30-5:30 p.m. $15-$25. Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles. (877) 722-4849. http://www.skirball.org.

Music is truly a universal language, increasingly used to foster political relationships and stimulate interfaith dialogue. The Jewish Music Commission of Los Angeles, The Archdiocese of Los Angeles and several other institutions will join for the fifth annual Interfaith Symposium of Theology, Art and Music featuring Michael Isaacson's new work, "Five Angels," a composition inspired by the death of Isaacson's father. Nick Strimple of USC's Thornton School of Music will conduct, and three choirs will perform classical and contemporary works. An afternoon symposium brings together clergy to discuss the representation of "Angels in Contemporary Civilization." 3 p.m. (panel), 7 p.m. (concert). $10 (concert), $25 (for symposium and kosher dinner). Beverly Hills Presbyterian Church, 505 N. Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills. (818) 783-3707. http://www.jmcla.org.

What better way to celebrate Israel's 60th birthday than to watch a vibrant Israeli dance company perform traditional dances from the region? The Keshet Chaim Dance Ensemble, along with singer-songwriter Julie Silver, will unleash their talents and energy at "Music Music Music: A Celebration of Israel's 60th Birthday." Former Catskills and Miami Beach entertainer Archie Barkan �"whose performance and presence is best know as "Yiddish, Yinglish and Borscht" -- will act as master of ceremonies. 3 p.m. $18-$30. Reform Temple of Laguna Woods, Clubhouse 3, 23822 Avenida Sevilla, Laguna Woods. For tickets call (949) 454-0662.

Award-winning poet Peter Cole brings the Judeo-Christian West together with the Middle East through poetry in "Al-Andalus to Jerusalem: A Poetry Tour From Andalusia to Modern Israel/Palestine." The 2007 MacArthur Fellow will present his writing in the context of historical parallels between Arabic and Hebrew from Medieval Spain to the Middle East. In his talk, Cole will discuss the post-Sept. 11 "clash of civilizations" specifically within the Arab-Muslim vs. Judeo-Christian world. Cole's 2007 National Jewish Book Award-winning anthology, "The Dream of the Poem: Hebrew Poetry from Muslim and Christian Spain, 950-1492," recreates the atmosphere of Medieval Spain, revealing its wisdom, richness, humor and gravity. 3-6 p.m. $20-$30. Levantine Center at Pacific Arts Center, 10469 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 657-5511. http://www.levantinecenter.org/.

Every person's childhood memories should be filled with the smell of cotton candy, the splash of a dunking tank and the sounds of giddy barefoot children in a moon bounce. Create those memories with your kids this weekend at Beth Shir Sholom's Purim Carnival. You don't have to be a member to enjoy the great food, the face painting, the games and the bake sale, so get everyone dressed and don't forget your camera -- you'll want photos to go along with those memories! 9:30 a.m. (Purim Shpeil), 11 a.m.-2 p.m. (carnival). Free. Beth Shir Sholom, 1827 California Ave., Santa Monica. (310) 453-3361. http://www.bethshirsholom.org.

Before J.J. Goldberg became an award-winning journalist and the editorial director of the Forward, he helped found Kibbutz Gezer near Tel Aviv and worked as a taxi driver in New York City. But Goldberg is not going to talk about himself at the Ameinu/Progressive Jewish Alliance Spring Seminar today. Instead, he'll discuss something he's far more passionate about: Israel and the American Jewish community. The daylong seminar will include two lectures, "Israel: the Peace Process -- Starting Over" and "The Race for the White House and the Stakes for the Jewish Community," broken up by a kosher luncheon and followed by discussion sessions. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. $20 (Ameinu and PJA members), $25 (general). Institute of Jewish Education, 8339 W. Third St., Los Angeles. (323) 761-8350.


pick gifEvangelical Christian support for Israel makes some Jews nervous. But the Rev. John Hagee has an impressive Rev. John HageeZionist resume: the founder and national chairman of Christians United for Israel (CUFI) has visited Israel 23 times, met with every Israeli prime minister since Menachem Begin, rallied for support at AIPAC's Policy Conference and donated more than $10 million to help Jews from the former Soviet Union make aliyah. During Stephen S. Wise's ongoing series focusing on critical issues, Rabbi David Woznica will join Hagee to discuss the theology of Christian evangelism, the current state of Jewish-Christian relations and why evangelicals feel such steadfast support for Israel. Following the talk, The W Group (20s and 30s) will be mingling over cookies and cakes at a special dessert reception. 7:30 p.m. $12. Stephen S. Wise Temple, 15500 Stephen S. Wise Drive, Los Angeles. (888) 380-9473. http://www.wisela.org.

Here's a pickle for ya: what makes those plump pickles kosher? Sure they're staple appetizers at any deli, but what they are made of reveals oodles about the laws of kashrut. Join Chabad Hebrew High School for a delectable and informative afternoon of "Kosher Pickle Making" that promises to demystify the pickle -- and you can eat some, too. 4:30 p.m. $12. Chabad Jewish Center in Laguna Beach, 30804 S. Coast Hwy., Laguna Beach. (949) 499-0770.

The Israeli Consulate and Bnei Akiva invite you to celebrate the heroism of Israel's fallen soldiers during an intense and meaningful evening. The families of two soldiers will open their hearts about their loss during an evening benefit showcasing the film "With All Your Soul: The Story of Roi Klein" and the television documentary "Noam Apter's Bravery at Yeshivat Otniel. Dessert reception will follow the screenings. 7 p.m. $100-$3600. The Writer's Guild of America West Theater, 135 S. Doheny Drive, Beverly Hills. (818) 919-4487.

Although Johnny Depp was devilishly delicious in the recent film version, there's nothing quite like seeing a live production of the bloody "Sweeney Todd: the Demon Barber of Fleet Street." With music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, this inventive new incarnation of the 1979 Broadway hit has the cast members wearing several hats: as actors and as musicians, many of them playing multiple instruments. This production, directed and designed by John Doyle, received six Tony Award nominations after it opened on Broadway in 2005. 8 p.m. Through April 6. $30-$90. Center Theatre Group's Ahmanson Theatre, 135 N. Grand Ave., Los Angeles. (213) 628-2772. http://www.centertheatregroup.org.


pick gifTraveling with the Peace Corps and lending a hand to destitute villagers seems hard enough. Try doing that as deaf person. Yale University and New York University educated author Josh Swiller will discuss his journeys through Zambia and other small villages in Africa along with his sharply written first book, "The Unheard: A Memoir of Deafness and Africa," which documents his harrowing yet hopeful life struggles. Born deaf, Swiller grew up wearing hearing aids, and in 2005 underwent cochlear implant surgery that enabled him to hear and converse. 7 p.m. Free. Library Foundation of Los Angeles, 630 West Fifth St., Los Angeles. (213) 228-7025. http://lfla.org/.


Stephen Sondheim
pick gifIn a rare public appearance, meet the man whose big break was writing lyrics for "West Side Story" and who followed that hit with "Sweeney Todd," and "Into the Woods." Touted as one of Broadway's best composers and lyricists, Stephen Sondheim will appear on stage with New York Times columnist and former theater critic Frank Rich in UCLA Live's "A Little Night Conversation." Since Rich wrote a New York Times Magazine cover story marking Sondheim's 70th birthday, the two have become good friends. Day-of tickets might be available at box office. UCLA Live reccommends calling. 8 p.m. $38-$74. UCLA Royce Hall, Westwood. (310) 825-2101. http://www.uclalive.org

Wish that spring would come already? The seasons haven't changed just yet, but you can still catch "Spring Fever: A Time to Renew Our Joy" with blonde, dreadlocked singer-musician Spring Gross. In the spirit of tikkun olam, Gross will fuse indie and folk music with sacred chanting in Hebrew, Sanskrit and English. Other performers will include Dave Stringer, Hans Christian of Rasa, Mark Gorman, Dave Allen, Ty Taylor and the Spring Fever Gospel Choir. Dress comfortably so you can move to the groovin' music, or just hang by the tea bar and drink organic wine. Proceeds from the concert will be donated to the Gross Family Foundation and distributed to various health organizations to fight cancer. 7:30 p.m. $20 (suggested donation). Studio Blue, 11928 Jefferson Blvd., Culver City. http://www.springgroove.com.

As part of their multievent celebration of Israel's 60th year of independence, Temple Beth Am is hosting a talk by Jerusalem Post editor-in-chief David Horovitz. Who better to speak about "Israel -- Its Place in the News: Countering the Delegitimization of Israel" than respected journalist, editor and author of "Still Life With Bombers: Israel in the Age of Terrorism" and "A Little Too Close to God: The Thrills and Panic of a Life in Israel"? Co-sponsored with CAMERA. 8 p.m. $10. Temple Beth Am, 1039 S. La Cienega Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 652-7354, ext. 219. http://www.tbala.org.


pick gifYou may have danced the hora before. You may have even done a debka or two. But have you ever danced the Sabbath? No, it's not a new kind of Israeli folk dance style; it's a new kind of Shabbat service, created by veteran Israeli dance teacher David Katz and Beth Shir Sholom. "Shabbat in Dance" takes the traditional structure of Friday night liturgy and adds a dance component in which the congregation is led in movements to accompany and enrich the prayers. The "dance-pray" circle will also incorporate poetry by Yehuda Amichai, Ruth Brin and Danny Siegel in honor of Israel's 60th birthday. 7:30 p.m. Free. Beth Shir Sholom, 1827 California Ave., Santa Monica. (310) 453-3361.

Iranian directors will showcase seven unique documentaries, films and short works as part of the 18th annual "Celebration of Iranian Cinema," presented by the UCLA film and television archives and the Bijan and Soraya Amin Foundation. Documentaries include "Red Card," based on the 2002 trial of Shahla Jahed, who was accused of murdering the wife of her soccer star lover. A selection of short films from Iran and the Diaspora will offer narrative nonfiction works documenting topics from female police recruits to the perils of public transportation in Tehran. $7-$10. Screenings through April 20. Billy Wilder Theater, Hammer Museum, 10899 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles. For a full list of movies and events, call (310) 206-3456 or visit http://www.cinema.ucla.edu.

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