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Jewish Journal

Calendar Girls Picks and Clicks August 9-15: Tisha B'Av, music, opera, comedy and Brad A. Greenberg

by Dikla Kadosh and Danielle Berrin

August 7, 2008 | 7:36 pm

Jamie M. Fox -- see Wednesday

Jamie M. Fox -- see Wednesday

SAT | AUGUST 9

(OPERA)

The rabbinical prohibition of kol isha -- a woman's voice -- precludes women from singing in front of men. Lucky for Michael Kleitman, a talented lyric tenor, this law does not prevent men from entertaining the opposite sex with their vocal skills. Born in Kishinev, Moldavia, to a musical family, Kleitman studied music and composition before leaving his home for the land down under in search of a democratic forum for his talents. Having studied under some of the greatest opera stars of our time, Kleitman comes to Los Angeles for "A Tribute to Luciano Pavarotti." This series, in memory of the late, great opera legend, includes pieces familiar to Pavarotti's fans as well as other well-known arias. After its wildly successful run throughout Europe, this tour is debuting at the famous Million Dollar Theatre to pay respect to old talents and hail new ones. Sat. 8 p.m. $35-$55. Million Dollar Theatre, 307 S. Broadway Ave., Los Angeles. (213) 617-3600. http://www.milliondollartheater.com.

(TISHA B'AV)

As Jews mourn the destruction of the Temple, this study session ponders what modern substitute stands in as the collective center of world Jewry. Is that Temple in danger of destruction? What can be done to preserve healthy Jewish spiritual communities? Joining Temple Emanuel's usual cast is professor Steven M. Cohen, a sociologist from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. The "Tisha B'Av Service and Study" features a discussion led by Cohen on identity and community in the United States, Israel and beyond. Let's face it -- it's the best distraction while you're fasting. Sat. 8 p.m. Free. Temple Emanuel of Beverly Hills, 8844 Burton Way, Beverly Hills. (310) 288-3737. http://www.tebh.org.

SUN | AUGUST 10

(TISHA B'AV)

A multifaith gathering will commemorate Tisha B'Av with a traditional service and a provocative film screening. "The Longing: The Forgotten Jews of South America," by filmmaker Gabriela Bohm, chronicles the plight of Crypto-Jews from South America, who repressed their Jewish identities for centuries (largely as a result of the Inquisition). Woven through the personal stories of six individuals -- including a doctor, a microbiologist and a mother and daughter -- the film reveals the struggle of long-forgotten Jews who are seeking to affirm their identity religiously, nationally and spiritually. Sun. 7 p.m. Free. Beth Shir Sholom, 1827 California Ave., Santa Monica. (310) 453-3361. http://www.bethshirsholom.org.

MON | AUGUST 11

(POLITICS)

While many pop-culture fanatics would rally for Jon Stewart or Bill Maher to take over the Oval Office in the event of both President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney becoming "unavailable," the next man -- or rather, woman -- in line for the job is Nancy Pelosi. As the first female Speaker of the House, Pelosi has given women everywhere a reason to watch CSPAN and be proud. Gracing the American Jewish University's Whizin Center for Continuing Education with a discussion of her new book, "Know Your Power: A Message to America's Daughters," Pelosi salutes women in America throughout history to today. Following the path paved for her by the likes of Susan B. Anthony and Alice Stone Blackwell, this influential politician stands -- literally before the House and metaphorically before American women -- as a role model to women everywhere. Mon. 7:30 p.m. $30 (includes a copy of the book). Whizin Center for Continuing Education Familian Campus, 15600 Mulholland Drive, Bel Air. For tickets, call (310) 440-1246. http://wcce.ajula.edu/pelosi

(COMEDY)

"She doesn't like big government, so it's no surprise, I can be her lover so long as I downsize. My conservative girlfriend -- got a tiny little heart full of passion. My conservative girlfriend -- every Friday we go liberal bashing." If you ever find yourself wondering whether to cover your politically correct ears or laugh out loud, you're likely listening to the satirical songs of Jewish comedian Roy Zimmerman. In more than two decades of poking fun at others, Zimmerman has performed with some of the comedic geniuses of our time -- George Carlin and Bill Maher, to name just two. Zimmerman also founded the popular '90s folk quartet, The Foremen, and has released five albums. The talented funnyman's lyrics and rhymes will have you wishing current events were always presented in such a humorous fashion. Mon. 8 p.m. $18. The Coffee Gallery Backstage, 2029 N. Lake St., Altadena. (626) 398-7919. http://coffeegallery.com.

TUE | AUGUST 12

(FILM)

Thanks to a brilliant marketing campaign that takes advantage of its audience's online socializing addiction, you can now see the high school docudrama, "American Teen," in theaters, "friend" and chat with the cast of real life characters on Facebook, hang out with them at one of the American Teen Nights and win all kinds of "American Teen" goodies -- if you create an online clique and invite more friends to join it than any other clique. But, let's not get ahead of ourselves with all these promotional gimmicks. First, you have to like the movie. Filmmaker Nanette Burstein spent 10 months in the small town of Warsaw, Ind., following five teens who each could be summed up in one word -- jock, princess, heartthrob, rebel and geek -- but are more complex and nuanced than those stereotypes initially suggest. Touching and hilarious, the Sundance favorite that garnered Burstein the directing award has been generating loads of buzz, online and off. Film opens July 25. Check local listings for theaters and show times. http://www.americanteenthemovie.com.

WED | AUGUST 13

(COMEDY THEATER)

Somewhere there exists a Jewish family that doesn't fit any stereotypes. The mother doesn't love to kibbitz, the father is not a lawyer and the children are not married or successful. That somewhere is the Pico Playhouse, where Jamie M. Fox's solo show, "Mazel Tov Cocktail," shows her audience a whole new side of Jewish living -- the hysterically unusual side. From the daughter with the unfulfilling job working as a celebrity's assistant to the drug-using jailed son, the only thing typically Jewish about this mishpacha are the neurotic parents. Fox, a regular at the Second City, Improv Olympic and the Comedy Central Stage, is an actress and writer who seeks to portray a loving family in which nachas may be a bit harder to come by. Wed. 7:30 p.m. Also, Aug. 14. $15. Pico Playhouse, 10508 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles. (213) 300-3401. http://www.picoplayhouse.com.

THU | AUGUST 14

(TU B'AV)

They say, "All you need is love." Well, you'll have it in droves at JConnectLA's "LOVEFEST," a permutation of Valentine's Day -- Jewish style. Local Jewish stars such as Moshav and cutesy comedian Smooth-E will entertain crowds who aren't busy in the "Heebster shuk," grooving with the drum circle or dining on the kosher cuisine being dished up. For the bookworms, writer Lisa Alcalay Klug will debut her treatise, "Cool Jew: The Ultimate Guide for Every Member of the Tribe," and sign copies for her cool Jewish fans. And for the lovelorn or single folk, fear not: There's instant matchmaking and a rather large (pay-as-you-chug) bar. Thu. 8:30 p.m.-1 a.m. $15 (advance), $20 (door). Fu's Palace, 8751 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 405-2336. http://www.jconnectla.com.

(FUNDRAISER)

There's a new cause in town: helping Cuban Jews. A group of young women inspired by a Joint Distribution Committee trip to Cuba are spearheading a new organization, "GenD: Generation Making a Difference." Their first benefit, which will raise funds for the JDC of Cuba, involves a hot Havana night at the Cuban eatery, La Bodeguita de Pico. So button up those guayaberas and prepare for live Cuban music, fresh rolled cigars, arroz, frijoles and an all-round tropical feast. 7:30-11:30 p.m. $100. La Bodeguita de Pico, 5047 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles. (646) 871-3203. http://www.jdc.org/genD/GenD.asp.

(POLITICS)

There's nothing like a heated, intelligent political debate to get Jews' social synapses firing. Jewish Journal staff writer, Brad Greenberg, a.k.a. The God Blogger, will be holding the reins of "The Young Jewish Vote," where Republican Jewish Coalition Director Larry Greenfield will face Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Pasadena) in a battle to win the hearts and educated minds of young Jewish professionals between the ages of 21 and 39. Come for the fireworks and stay for the martini-infused, dessert-laden afterglow. Sponsored by ATID, HIAS and ZOA. Thu. 7 p.m. $10 (advance), $15 (at the door). Sinai Temple, 10400 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 481-3244. http://www.AtidLA.com.



(WORLD MUSIC)

Distinguished musician Yair Dalal, an Israeli composer, violinist and oudist, is known for his preservation of Iraqi Jewish melodies, an ethnic genre played by few musicians today. Accompanying Dalal in the Skirball's world music series Sunset Concerts will be California-based Israeli percussionist and peace activist Dror Sinai; woodwind and reed instruments player Norik Manukyan, whose repertoire spans the musical spectrum from traditional Armenian music to ancient sacred melodies of the Middle East; and young double bassist Miles Jay, who has extensive experience performing jazz, classical and Middle Eastern music. Thu. 8 p.m. $5-$10 (parking). Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 440-4500. http://www.skirball.org.

Jina Davidovich contributed to this article Tracker Pixel for Entry

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