Hallelujah! The Liz Lerman Dance Exchange premieres the Los Angeles version of its national community performance Hallelujah Project this weekend at the Skirball Cultural Center. Titled "Stones Will Float, Leaves Will Sink, Paths Will Cross," the performance encompasses dance, storytelling and participation from community members, including Rabbi Steven Jacobs and Rabbi Ed Feinstein. $18 (general admission); $15 (members); $10 (students). 8 p.m.; also Sun., Feb. 11, 4 p.m. 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles. For tickets, call (323) 655-8587.
In the grand theatrical tradition, James Sherman's Jewish family comedy "Jest a Second!" features a man dressing up as a woman. Therapist Joel Goldman arrives at his sister Sarah's apartment planning to come out to his family as a gay. Instead, he chickens out at the last minute and turns his boyfriend Randy away at the door. The plot thickens when Sarah's husband dresses up as Randy, Joel's new girlfriend. $12 (general admission); $10 (students and seniors). Fri. and Sat. 8 p.m.; Sun. 2 p.m. Through Feb. 17. Morgan-Wixon Theatre, 2627 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica. For reservations or more information, call (310) 828-7519.
The hottest tunes of the Great White Way torch Long Beach tonight as the Alpert JCC presents Broadway's Hottest. Four local and Broadway performers, including husband and wife producing team Marilyn and Randy Tichauer, belt tunes from "Sound of Music," "Phantom of the Opera," "Fiddler on the Roof," and other favorites. $30. 7 p.m. Alpert JCC, 3801 E. Willow St., Long Beach. For reservations, call (562) 426-7601.
With student musicians from over 40 public and private schools across Los Angeles, the Stephen Wise Youth Orchestra presents some of the best local young musicians. In concerts today and Monday, the ensemble plays a concert featuring classical masterworks as well as Jewish repertoire. Sunday: $5 (general admission); $10 (reserved seating). 2:30 p.m. Robert Margolis Performing Arts Center, 15800 Zeldins' Way, Los Angeles. Monday: $10/$20. 7:30 p.m. Zipper Concert Hall, 200 S. Grand Ave., Los Angeles. For reservations or more information, call (310) 440-3500 ext. 3344.
"My heart is in the east, and I in the uttermost west," wrote Judeo-Spanish poet Yehuda Halevi in the 12th century. Tonight, we in the modern "uttermost west" can catch a tribute to this passionate poet with the eclectic Synergy performance ensemble. With piano, guitar, flute, harp and voice, Synergy performs compositions by Kurt Weill, Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco and others, with Israeli actress Efrat Lavi reading Halevi's poetry. $12 (general admission); $10 (seniors); $7 (students). 7:30 p.m. Greenway Court Theatre, 544 N. Fairfax Ave., Los Angeles. For reservations or more information, call (323) 658-5824.
A piece of ancient Israel arrives this week in Malibu, as Pepperdine University opens the first public exhibition of artifacts excavated from Banias, a.k.a. Caesarea Philippi, in northern Israel. Relics from the palace of King Herod Agrippa II, jewelry and pottery from the Byzantine and Arab periods and other items trace the history of the site through Roman, Jewish, Christian and Islamic times. Tue.-Sun., 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Through May 4. Frederick R. Weisman Museum of Art, Pepperdine University, 24255 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu. For more information, call (310) 506-4851.
Neil Simon won the Pulitzer Prize for "Lost in Yonkers," his story of two teenage boys spending a year with their demanding German Jewish grandmother. Tony Award-winning actor Anthony LaPaglia stars as the father of the two boys in the L.A. Theatre Works production opening today. $32-$36. Wed.-Fri. 8 p.m.; Sat. 2 p.m.; Sun. 4 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Through Feb. 18. Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles. For reservations, call (310) 827-0889.
Dena Glaser and her mother-in-law Harriet Glaser exhibit their artwork together, creating a show of two generations titled, appropriately, L'Dor Vador. Harriet's soft, spiritual watercolors contrast with the bold abstractions of Dena's prints, yet both artists, both generations, explore biblical and Jewish themes in their work. Through April. Artist reception, Sun., Feb. 11, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Sinai Temple, 10400 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles. For more information, call (800) 972-6694.
Take the Book of Ruth. Place the famine story in America's Dust Bowl migration. Flesh out the unbiblical plotline of Ruth and Naomi's love affair. Now you have the basic elements of Karen Hartman's drama "Girl Under Grain," commissioned in part by the National Foundation for Jewish Culture and winner of last year's New York Fringe Festival. $12-$20. Thur.-Sat. 8 p.m.; Sun. 4 p.m. Through March 31. Theatre of Note, 1517 Cahuenga Blvd., Hollywood. For reservations, call (323) 856-8611.