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Tag: Arts

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  • Loss, survival — cue the music

    April 11, 2012 | 12:06 pm

    “When I told my son I was going to write a musical about the Holocaust,” playwright and Holocaust survivor Lucy Deutsch recalled, “he raised both arms and screamed, ‘Mother, how can you do that? Those two words don’t belong together!’

    “I answered, ‘Yes they do, if...

  • Music transcends darkest hours in ‘Willesden Lane’

    By Tom Tugend

    April 11, 2012 | 11:57 am

    Malka and Abraham Jura faced a Solomonic decision in late 1938, as the Nazis were tightening the vise on the Jews of Vienna. The couple hoped to send their three daughters to safety but were able to wrangle only one place on the Kindertransport ferrying a limited number of Jewish...

  • Painting lives: Artist helps clients mark pivot points, from bar mitzvah dreams to a dying wish

    April 9, 2012 | 10:25 am

    Lori Loebelsohn enters other people’s lives at pivotal moments: a marriage, a milestone birthday, a bar mitzvah. Armed with a pen and a notebook, she discusses intimate details about the inner lives of those she has just met: their passions, their most significant memories, their...

  • Probing the mysterious fate of the Romanovs

    By Jonathan Kirsch

    April 5, 2012 | 12:51 pm

    Over the many years I’ve spent bumping around the book business, I have introduced my wife, Ann, to a great many literary lions and lionesses, but nothing quite compares to the evening when we first met Dora Levy Mossanen at a book-signing for John Rechy at Dutton’s in Brentwood.

    ...
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  • Home movies reveal cultural history of SoCal Jews

    April 4, 2012 | 2:39 pm

    Home movies have long played an important role in the lives of American Jews. Backyard barbecues, baby namings, bar mitzvahs — few are the events that haven’t been captured on film by the Jewish parent or grandparent. Home movies contain our memories, our inside jokes, our first...

  • From L.A. to Casablanca and back again

    March 29, 2012 | 5:35 pm

    On May 16, 2003, a series of suicide bombings struck Casablanca. The target: Jews. Luckily, the suicide bombers were not particularly savvy, and the Jewish targets they struck were empty for Shabbat. Although no Jews were killed, nearly 30 Muslims died as a result of the blasts. In...

  • Starring in ‘Godot’ ... and Remembering Beckett

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    March 29, 2012 | 5:08 pm

    In his art-filled Brentwood living room, actor Alan Mandell approached a bookcase filled with volumes on the late existential playwright Samuel Beckett, reverently pulling a file from a shelf. Inside was a rare treasure:  a copy of the script Beckett gave the now 84-year-old Mandell...

  • Hershey Felder’s two Los Angeles theater turns

    By Tom Tugend

    March 27, 2012 | 7:32 pm

    Hershey Felder is a prolific performer, writer and composer, but he is setting a new personal record with world premieres of two plays at different Los Angeles venues.

    Best known as the piano-playing alter ego of George Gershwin, Leonard Bernstein and Frederic Chopin, Felder is...

  • Ben Marcus’ story of heartbreak and violence

    March 23, 2012 | 12:14 pm

    An epidemic that started among the forest-dwelling Jews — “genetic in nature … a problem only for certain people” — is spreading to other communities and threatening to impose an ominous silence upon the world.  The culprit is the toxic language of children.  This is the...

  • This week in power: France attack, Mittzkrieg, Sandra Fluke, Backstreet Boy

    By Danny Groner

    March 22, 2012 | 5:33 am

    A roundup of the most talked about political and global stories in the Jewish world this week:

    France shooting
    During a shootout Thursday, French police killed the suspect accused of being the gunman who reportedly filmed his attack of a Jewish school in Toulouse, France, that left...

  • Segel’s starry-eyed man-child amuses and moves us

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    March 15, 2012 | 3:06 pm

    Jason Segel folded his 6-foot-4-inch frame compactly onto a couch at the Four Seasons Hotel and placed his hand upon his chin. Quirky and thoughtful in conversation, the star and co-writer of such comic hits as “The Muppets” and “Forgetting Sarah Marshall” spoke eloquently on...

  • Connie Rice and the Ayecha challenge

    March 14, 2012 | 10:50 am

    “Where are you?” This is the first question in the Torah. Asked by God, directed to Adam, this foundational question — ayecha in Hebrew — echoes as more than mere inquiry about physical location. Ayecha is a piercing question about character: “What matters to you?”...

  • Mezzo-soprano sings of ‘Color’ despite blindness

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    March 7, 2012 | 5:38 pm

    When Laurie Rubin was the first blind student to become bat mitzvah at Valley Beth Shalom (VBS) 20 years ago, an overflowing crowd turned out to see her lead the service and chant the Torah portion from her Braille copy.

    Rubin — now a rising mezzo-soprano who has performed in...

  • Paul Weitz on dads, De Niro and “Being Flynn”

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    March 5, 2012 | 2:18 pm

    Father figures emerge prominently in the films of Paul Weitz—as do complex relationships between fathers and sons.  The last time I spoke with the convivial filmmaker was regarding “About a Boy”, the 2003 film Weitz made with his brother, Chris Weitz (“A Better Life”), about a...

  • Family-focused stories at forefront of Israel Film Fest

    By Tom Tugend

    March 1, 2012 | 12:57 pm

    It’s springtime in Los Angeles, which means raising the curtain on the 26th Israel Film Festival, this year displaying a colorful palette of more than 30 feature movies, documentaries, TV shows and student shorts.

    The March 15 opening-night venue is the main theater on the...

  • The last words from Tony Judt, an English, intellectual, Jew

    By Jonathan Kirsch

    February 29, 2012 | 11:19 am

    Imagine a private conversation — at moments, an intimate conversation — between two public intellectuals whose careers have been devoted to understanding the wider world in which we find ourselves. One is facing imminent death, and the other is recording the conversation in a...

  • Author of Bernstein bio wins Jewish book honors

    February 15, 2012 | 5:56 pm

    Susan Goldman Rubin, the Los Angeles-based author of many nonfiction books for young people, has won the 2012 Sydney Taylor Book Award for her engaging biography “Music Was It: Young Leonard Bernstein” (ages 10 and up). Presented by the Association of Jewish Libraries, the award...

  • ‘Rampart’ director brings his Israeli military service to L.A.‘s mean streets

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    February 9, 2012 | 2:47 pm

    In the Los Angeles film noir “Rampart,” Los Angeles Police Department Sgt. Dave Brown patrols the broiling-hot city hunting for bad guys. A Vietnam War veteran, Brown sees himself as a soldier and the streets as an urban jungle. He’s the cop of your worst nightmare: racist,...

  • Shalom Auslander’s ‘Hope: A Tragedy’

    February 3, 2012 | 1:35 pm

    Shalom Auslander’s memoir, “Foreskin’s Lament,” chronicled the author’s shaky departure from his dysfunctional ultra-Orthodox home in Monsey, New York.  Readers will recall how Auslander was somehow able to blend sadness and compassion with biting humor and anger into his...

  • Who is that masked Jewish man? It’s Hero Man!

    February 1, 2012 | 5:15 pm

    David Filmore is a mild-mannered filmmaker. A Shabbat-observant Jew from Australia who moved to West Hollywood 10 years ago, he spends his days focused on his production company, Plutonian Films.

    Few might suspect that the 36-year-old with shoulder-length curly hair has something...

  • Art and fashion find their nexus in a Los Angeles creative couple

    By Tom Teicholz

    February 1, 2012 | 3:04 pm

    Cubes of color intersected by bands, which the viewer can manipulate into arrangements within a grid framing the work; watercolors of narrow striations, punctuated by colors and shapes, transform abstraction from cool cerebral to emotional landscapes. Clothing made in Los Angeles but...

  • Guide to a master reader’s works

    By Rabbi David Wolpe

    January 26, 2012 | 1:33 pm

    In a moment of unwarranted despair, the young Keats wrote his epitaph: “Here lies one whose name is writ in water.” Yet creative geniuses achieve such immortality as human memory bestows. Those who exalt them disappear. The poet endures; the critic is destined to be forgotten.

    ...
  • This week in power: Florida, Newt, German anti-Semitism, Kosher Jesus

    By Danny Groner

    January 26, 2012 | 4:13 am

    A roundup of the most talked about political and global stories in the Jewish world this week:

    Florida factors in
    “How Florida Jews cast their ballots January 31 is actually serious business,” said The Jewish Daily Forward in a preview piece for next week’s primary. “After all, the...

  • Fred Weintraub: The Serendipitous Producer

    By Jonathan Kirsch

    January 19, 2012 | 2:16 pm

    Fred Weintraub is not merely an eyewitness to the history of American pop culture.  As we discover in his wholly winning memoir, “Bruce Lee, Woodstock and Me: From the Man Behind a Half-Century of Music, Movies and Martial Arts” (Brooktree Canyon Press: $28.95), he was a featured...

  • Notable books of 2011

    By Jonathan Kirsch

    January 11, 2012 | 4:11 pm

    In addition to our prizewinner, we also want to honor some of the other exceptional books that came to our attention in 2011, each of which is accomplished and provocative.

    The headlines in The Jewish Journal and other newspapers serve to confirm the acuity and even the prescience...

  • This week in power: Iowa, Bibi’s year, Beit Shemesh followup, Fox poll

    By Danny Groner

    January 5, 2012 | 4:31 am

    A roundup of the most talked about political and global stories in the Jewish world this week:

    Iowa caucus
    Everyone was paying attention to Iowa on Tuesday as the Republican candidates vied for votes, resulting in a close contest that left three strong contenders: Mitt Romney, Rick...

  • This week in power: Ron Paul, Israeli policy, Beit Shemesh, TV station

    By Danny Groner

    December 29, 2011 | 4:55 am

    A roundup of the most talked about political and global stories in the Jewish world this week:

    Ron Paul under fire
    Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul is getting support from questionable sources that have some Jewish voters worrying even more about Paul’s recent surge in the...

  • Filmmaker Jolie feels the pain in making ‘Blood and Honey’

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    December 22, 2011 | 3:14 pm

    Angelina Jolie set aside plans for a surprise birthday present for her partner Brad Pitt’s 48th birthday as she stood to greet me with a smile: “I’m Angie.” Poised and approachable, and clad all in black, the Oscar-winning actress was at the Roosevelt Hotel in Hollywood to...

  • In the beginning, there was Monterey

    By Jonathan Kirsch

    December 21, 2011 | 12:06 pm

    One way to mark the chronology of the counterculture, a pastime that is beloved by the baby boomers, is by reference to rock festivals. Woodstock and Altamont, for example, are now fully transformed into transcendent symbols of life and death, good and evil, the beginning and end of...

  • ‘Unusual’ Jewish books

    December 20, 2011 | 1:08 pm

    During the 1978 Frankfurt Book Fair, an enterprising bibliophile conducted a meticulous search of the vast exhibit hall with an unusual purpose: to find the oddest book title.  Inspired by this valiant quest, the British trade magazine, The Bookseller has been publishing annual lists...

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