JReleases

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JRelease is a press release service of AJPA. Our goal is to provide the timely distribution of press releases to all AJPA members. AJPA publications represent an ideal forum for companies and organizations to announce important developments and news. JRelease is the ideal resource for clients who wish to reach the Jewish press and through it the wider Jewish community.

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JRelease submissions should be emailed to jessica@ajpa.org. Please include "JRelease" in the subject line of your email. Submissions will be reviewed and approved within 48 hours after receipt and distributed upon receipt of payment. Please indicate your preferred date of distribution at the top of your press release submission. Acceptance of submissions for distribution is at the sole discretion of AJPA and as is the case with all material submitted to newspapers, the decision to publish the material is that of the newspaper. It's also a good idea to follow up with editors individually to maximize the number of "hits" for your story. AJPA does not provide direct contact information to member editors.

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Recent JReleases

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  • November 30, 2022 9:36 AM | Laura Herring (Administrator)

    The 30th Anniversary of
    Kung Pao Kosher Comedy™
    Jewish Comedy on Christmas in a (this year, pop-up) Chinese Restaurant

    Info: www.koshercomedy.com • Tickets: www.CityBoxOffice.com/KungPao 

                     Media contact: Lisa Geduldig - lisag@igc.org 
    Cell: (415) 205-6515

    The 30th Anniversary of Kung Pao Kosher Comedy™
    Jewish Comedy on Christmas in a (this year, pop-up) Chinese Restaurant

    Kung Pao Kosher Comedy Returns In-Person in San Francisco (and livestream)!

    With Mark Schiff, Cathy Ladman, Orion Levine, Arline Geduldig, & Lisa Geduldig

    Friday, December 23 thru Sunday, December 25, 2022

    In-person: 5pm Dinner / 6pm Show

    Virtual Show: 6pm PST (7pm MST / 8pm CST / 9pm EST)

    At the Kung Pao Room at Congregation Sherith Israel, 2266 California St., San Francisco

    Catering by Green Chow Down (For in-person AND Bay Area virtual viewers)

    Info: www.KosherComedy.com

    Tickets: $30 - $100  • www.CityBoxOffice.com/KungPao

    Partial Proceeds Benefit: SF-Marin Food Bank AND The Center for Reproductive Rights

    San Francisco, CA… Kung Pao Kosher Comedy™ is celebrating its 30th Anniversary on  December 23-25, 2022! After being presented virtually for the past two years due to the pandemic, Kung Pao returns with in-person shows in San Francisco this year (AND continues its livestream option). Since the New Asia Restaurant where Kung Pao had been held since its 5th year (1997) closed during the pandemic, this year’s milestone shows will take place in a “pop-up” Chinese restaurant, "The Kung Pao Room" at Congregation Sherith Israel in San Francisco. Chinese food catering provided by Green Chow Down.

    Spanning three days (and three decades), this annual Jewish-Comedy-on-Christmas-in-a-Chinese-Restaurant tradition will feature Mark Schiff (tours with Seinfeld; was a writer and actor on Mad About You), Cathy Ladman (The Tonight Show guest a gazillion times; Curb Your EnthusiasmModern Family; Mad Me), Orion Levine (recent Berkeley to LA transplant; just featured as a New Face at Montreal’s Just for Laughs Comedy Festival), Lisa Geduldig (Kung Pao host), Arline Geduldig (Lisa’s 91 year young mom by video from Florida).

    Attendees sit at tables of 10 and eat dinner Chinese banquet style before the show. Table names include Alan King, Barbra Streisand, Catskills, Chutzpah, Fanny Brice, Gefilte Fish, Gilda Radner, Joan Rivers, Kasha Varnishkas, Kvetch, Marx Brothers, and Meshugganah.

    History:

    Kung Pao Kosher Comedy was created in 1993 by accident by San Francisco comedian, Lisa Geduldig, who was booked to perform at a women’s comedy night in South Hadley, Massachusetts at the Peking Garden Club, what she naturally thought would be a comedy club. But upon her arrival, she discovered that the venue was actually a Chinese Restaurant. After telling Jewish jokes at a Chinese restaurant, a conversation the next day between Lisa and her old summer camp friend, Tobi Sovak, about its irony led to the creation of Kung Pao Kosher Comedy: Jewish Comedy on Christmas in a Chinese Restaurant — a take off on the tradition of Jews going to a Chinese Restaurant and a movie on Christmas. And the rest is history. Kung Pao, which answers the age-old question “What are Jews supposed to do on Christmas?” has garnered both national press and a national following. In celebrating its 30th Anniversary this December, Kung Pao was the country’s first Jewish comedy on Christmas in a Chinese restaurant show and is one of San Francisco’s longest running comedy shows.

    Many of the great household name Jewish comedians have graced the Kung Pao stage. Henny Youngman performed his last show there in 1997 at 91 years old. Shelley Berman has headlined, as has David Brenner, as have many others in the Who’s Who of Jewish Comedians including Elayne Boosler, Carol Leifer, Wendy Liebman, Cathy Ladman, Judy Gold, Jeff Ross, and Gary Gulman. www.koshercomedy.com/past-comedians

    Kung Pao has been operating in San Francisco’s Chinatown every December since its inception in 1993 (except for the past two years online due to the pandemic). The event began on December 24, 1993 with one show at the Four Seas Restaurant, and then was held for the next three years at Hunan Restaurant. With 91-year old Henny Youngman booked to headline in 1997, Kung Pao moved to New Asia Restaurant as Hunan was up a flight of stairs with no elevator. Many audience members have attended this San Francisco institution for 20+ years while others have attended every year since 1993. The show was live-streamed on Zoom and YouTube Live the past two years catering to 2000+ people and reaching audiences throughout the country and some internationally during the pandemic.

    Kung Pao has been featured in the NY Times, LA Times, Chicago Tribune… The virtual show was a Pick in the New York TimesThe Forward, and Jewish newspapers in cities including Atlanta, Tampa and St. Louis, in addition to the SF Bay Area press.

    Feeding the soul as well as the stomach. – New York Times

    A San Francisco institution. – San Francisco Examiner

    The Dinner Menu will feature our signature dish Kung Pao Chicken (or Tofu), along with Steamed Cod with Black Bean and Ginger Sauce, Chinese Green Beans with Mushrooms and Onions, Sautéed Eggplant with Red Bell Pepper and Garlic, and Steamed Jasmine Rice. Catering is being provided this year by Green Chow Down, headed up by chef Angela Chou. (Green Chow Down provides catering for local companies including Google, private events, weddings, fundraisers, and bar/bat mitzvahs.) Virtual Kung Pao viewers in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond may order the same menu through Chou’s ChowBox chowboxkungpaokosher.com. In-person attendees and virtual viewers who order the dinner will receive a custom-made Yiddish proverb fortune cookie with their dinner. Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Factory in San Francisco's Chinatown has made fortune cookies since 1962 and Kung Pao’s since 1994. The Yiddish proverbs include the infamous “With one tuchus, you can’t dance at 2 weddings.” (You can’t be in two places at once.) The past two years, the fortune cookies were only virtual (motion graphics).

    All in-person attendees will receive Kung Pao swag (a goodie bag) with their ticket: A pair of wooden custom-printed Kung Pao chopsticks custom-ordered from China, a packet of Yiddish-proverb fortune cookies, and more.

    In July 2020, a few months into the pandemic, Lisa Geduldig, introduced her audiences to online comedy shows with the monthly Lockdown Comedy every third Thursday of the month (and still running) on Zoom hosted from her mother’s retirement community in Florida where Lisa accidentally found herself marooned for 17 months after going to visit for two weeks that March, just before the pandemic hit. (Lisa has been “commuting” between Florida and San Francisco for the past year.) Lisa’s 91-year old budding comedian mother, Arline, has been a special guest each month, performing on the show. The duo has received national press: The LA Times ran How A California Comic Launched A Virtual Stand-Up Show and Discovered A New Star: Mom; the San Francisco Examiner ran the article, Kung Pao Kosher Creator Introduces “Lockdown Comedy”: Lisa Geduldig and Her Mom Stream Standup, with Guests, from Florida, and in September, the San Francisco Chronicle did a feature S.F.’s Lisa Geduldig Happily Sharing Comedy Spotlight with A Fresh Talent, Her 90-Year-Old Mother.

    COMEDIANS’ BIOS:
    www.koshercomedy.com/comedians

    Mark Schiff is a stand up comedian who has headlined at comedy clubs nationwide, including all the major casinos in Las Vegas and Atlantic City, and has toured worldwide with Jerry Seinfeld for fifteen years. Mark has specials on HBO and Showtime, has appeared on "The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson" and "Late Night with David Letterman," is featured in Seinfeld’s Netflix special "Jerry Before Seinfeld" and "Live from the Laugh Factory with Dom Irrera," has been a writer and actor on "Mad About You," and has been the featured act at the Montreal Just for Laughs Comedy Festival. He co-edited "I Killed: True Stories of the Road from America’s Top Comics” with Ritch Shydner, is the playwright of "Married People," co-written with Steve Shaffer, which played to sold-out audiences in Los Angeles in 2019, and “The Comic,” which ran in Los Angeles for ten months as well as at the Aspen Comedy Festival, a regular contributor to LA’s Jewish Journal, and the host of the podcast "You Don’t Know Schiff." Mark lives in Los Angeles with his first wife, his fifth dog, and photos of his three sons who have all moved out and have good jobs, yet still manage to call and ask for money. His new book "Why Not? Lessons on Comedy, Courage, and Chutzpah" is available on Amazon. MarkSchiff.com

    Cathy Ladman is one of the country's top comedians. Her show is a self-probing vehicle which draws laughter from exposing personal neuroses. Cathy has not only appeared on "The Tonight Show" nine times but was also the only female comic to appear on the last two of Johnny Carson’s "Tonight Show Anniversary" shows. She has made four appearances thus far on "The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson," did her own HBO "One Night Stand" comedy special, and was awarded the American Comedy Award for Best Female Stand Up Comic. A native New Yorker, now living in Los Angeles, Cathy is an acclaimed TV and film actor. Her film credits include "Charlie Wilson’s War," "The Aristocrats," and "White Oleander." Her TV appearances include "Curb Your Enthusiasm," "Modern Family," and "Mad Men." She also appeared regularly on "Politically Incorrect" and Comedy Central's "Dr. Katz: Professional Therapist." Besides writing her stand up act and original scripted projects, Cathy was on the writing staffs of "The Caroline Rhea Show" (2002), "Caroline in the City" (different Caroline altogether – 1997), and "Roseanne" (1996). She also wrote an episode of "King of Queens" and other sitcoms. Cathy's comedy focuses on family, growing up, relationships, and real life from a very personal perspective. The Los Angeles Times put it best: "... Ladman has such clever, well-written material and such a breezy, unassuming delivery that it would be easy to overlook just how good she is: Her act seems effortless." CathyLadman.com

    Orion Levine is a stand up comedian and actor from the Bay Area, currently based in Los Angeles in a room with unfortunate carpeting. Orion was named a New Face at the Just For Laughs Comedy Festival (Montreal) in 2022 and a finalist at the San Francisco International Comedy Competition in 2021. Now he performs all over the country. He created and stars in the popular comedy web series titled Scorp Oner, an ongoing graffiti mockumentary based on his own experiences as an aspiring graffiti writer. OrionLevine.com

    Arline Geduldig (joining by video message from Florida), 91 year young mother of Kung Pao producer, Lisa Geduldig, is a Florida-based budding comedian who took to the (virtual) stage for the first time in July 2020 on her daughter’s monthly Zoom comedy show, Lockdown Comedy; she has been charming audiences on the monthly show ever since. Arline grew up in Brooklyn, raised her kids on Long Island, and retired to Florida, as is Jewish law. She offers her keen observations on aging, hearing aids, and hot young firemen and reminisces about her first kiss. Arline has always been funny, and it was time for her to share her natural humor with her daughter’s audiences. 

    Lisa Geduldig is a San Francisco-based comedian and the creator, producer, and MC of Kung Pao Kosher Comedy™ — Jewish Comedy on Christmas in a Chinese Restaurant. Before the pandemic, Lisa had been running Comedy Returns to El Rio, a monthly decade-long comedy show at El Rio in San Francisco where her comedy career began 30+ years ago. Since July 2020, she has been producing Lockdown Comedy every 3rd Thursday of the month on Zoom from the underwear drawer in the guest room at her mother’s retirement community home in Florida, where she accidentally got marooned (in Florida, not in the underwear drawer) for 17 months during the pandemic (and became a fan of the Early Bird special). She has been commuting between Florida and San Francisco for the past year or so. Lisa appeared in a Canadian documentary, Dreaming of a Jewish Christmas, which aired on Canadian and European TV in December 2017. She is also a freelance arts publicist in both English and Spanish. SFPublicist.com

    BENEFICIARIES:

    Over the past 29 years, Kung Pao has raised 10’s of 1000’s of dollars and awareness for countless organizations. In keeping with the Jewish tradition of tzedakah (charity, in Hebrew - tied in with a sense of duty and social responsibility), each year Kung Pao donates partial proceeds to organizations and causes in which we believe.

    THIS YEAR’S BENEFICIARIES

    San Francisco-Marin Food Bank’s mission is to end hunger in San Francisco and Marin. Before the pandemic, one in five neighbors was at risk of hunger, the pandemic upended thousands of people’s lives and livelihoods forcing more people than ever before to wonder where their next meal would come from. While we see our community slowly recovering, there is no vaccine for hunger. It will take time for those most impacted by the crisis to get back on their feet. The Food Bank continues to serve more than 50,000 households, compared to 32,000 pre-pandemic, and traffic to the find food page on our website is still up four times what it was pre-pandemic. We’ve met this need so far with the help of community partners, volunteers and other supporters. After more than a year responding to the pandemic, we are focused on returning to solutions that work and continuing to implement services developed during the crisis. It will take a collective effort to ensure we can continue to feed our neighbors facing hunger. www.sfmfoodbank.org

    The Center for Reproductive Rights is a global human rights organization of lawyers and advocates who ensure reproductive rights are protected in law as fundamental human rights for the dignity, equality, health, and well-being of every person. Since its founding in 1992, the Center’s game-changing litigation, legal policy, and advocacy work—combined with unparalleled expertise in constitutional, international, and comparative human rights law—has transformed how reproductive rights are understood by courts, governments, and human rights bodies. Through their work across five continents, they have played a critical role in securing legal victories before national courts, United Nations Committees, and regional human rights bodies on reproductive rights issues including access to life-saving obstetrics care, contraception, maternal health, and safe abortion services, as well as the prevention of forced sterilization and child marriage. www.reproductiverights.org

    Some Random Kung Pao Kosher Comedy Facts:

    • Henny Youngman, The King of One-Liners, headlined in 1997, performing at what ended up being his last show; the 91 year old comedian died two months later in February 1998.
    • A chapter in the book, A Kosher Christmas: 'Tis the Season to be Jewish focuses on Kung Pao.
    • One couple, after 25 years, got married at the show by a rabbi they met at their table.
    • One year someone brought a rooster named Vern as an emotional support animal. Really. 

    Calendar Listing:

    WHAT: The 30th Anniversary of Kung Pao Kosher Comedy™
    Jewish Comedy on Christmas in a (pop-up) Chinese Restaurant

    With Mark Schiff, Cathy Ladman, Orion Levine, Arline Geduldig (by video), and Lisa Geduldig

    WHEN: Friday, December 23, Saturday, December 24, and Sunday, December 25
    In-person: Dinner: 5pm. Show: 6pm.
    Show (in-person and Livestream): 6pm PST /7pm MST / 8pm CST / 9pm EST

    WHERE: In-person:
    The Kung Pao Room
    Congregation Sherith Israel
    2266 California St. @ Webster
    San Francisco, CA 94115

    AND Virtually (on YouTube Live)

    TICKETS: $30-$100 • www.CityBoxOffice.com/KungPao

    INFO:  www.koshercomedy.com

    PARTIAL PROCEEDS BENEFIT:
    San Francisco-Marin Food Bank AND The Center for Reproductive Rights

    Disclaimer: JRelease is a press release service of AJPA. AJPA does not endorse and cannot vouch for material distributed by this service.

  • November 18, 2022 8:57 AM | Jessica Painter (Administrator)

    Hartman Digital releases Heretic in the House, - A Groundbreaking Podcast Dismantling Stereotypes About Orthodox Jews Hosted by Naomi Seidman on November 21st

    For Immediate Release:
    November 18, 2022

    What happens when the biggest thing in your life is the story that you're trying to put behind you? On Heretic in the House, a limited podcast series, host Naomi Seidman takes us on a deeply moving journey with people who have left the Hassidic community, to uncover their hidden stories.

    Seidman is a professor, author, and a 2016 Guggenheim Fellow. Raised ultra-Orthodox, she "left the path" for the outside world when she was eighteen:

    "When you leave the Hassidic community, there is a story of leaving and a story of being left behind. People are fascinated by it. On Heretic in the House, we probe why these stories are so captivating for Jews and non-Jews alike and, most importantly, what parts of the story are conspicuously excluded."

    America has a fascination with Hasidic Jews, whether in shows like Netflix's Unorthodox, news reports about Orthodox schools, or memoirs but these popular depictions don't tell the whole story; they just tell the story the public wants to hear. What they hide is a complicated dance between Orthodox Judaism and those who leave it, and a web of stereotypes that trap Hasidim, rebels, and the public alike.

    The Heretic in the House podcast tells powerful stories about real, complex people, family drama, and challenging personal odysseys. It talks about a truth that you won't see in popular depictions: when people leave Hasidic communities, the door almost never completely shuts behind them. Join us on Heretic in The House as we open that door for the first time.

    This podcast is the first in a series of new releases from Hartman Digital, the audio and video production wing of the Shalom Hartman Institute. Included on the slate for later this year; Perfect Jewish Parents podcast, and in early 2023, a new YouTube series, Kosher in America.

    The Shalom Hartman Institute is a leading center of Jewish thought and education, serving Israel and North America. The Institute is committed to the big relevant ideas impacting Jewish communities today and to ensuring that Judaism is a compelling force for good in the 21st century. 

    For all media inquiries and to interview Seidman: Jan.greenfield@shalomhartman.org

    https://www.hartman.org.il/heretic

  • November 17, 2022 10:01 AM | Jessica Painter (Administrator)

    The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music Announces Music and Justice

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    November 16, 2022

    Information: 
    schoolofmusic.ucla.edu

    PRESS CONTACTS

    Aleba Gartner, (212) 206-1450
    aleba@alebaco.com

    Lisa Garibay, (310) 825-4215
    lygaribay@schoolofmusic.ucla.edu

    "When King said, 'We must live together as brothers,' people didn't hear it. Now they damn well hear it."
    — Dave Brubeck

    The recently launched

    LOWELL MILKEN CENTER FOR MUSIC OF AMERICAN JEWISH EXPERIENCE

    at

    THE UCLA HERB ALPERT SCHOOL OF MUSIC
    in partnership with UCLA Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI)and the Milken Archive of Jewish Music announces a new series of concerts and dialogue: 

    Music and Justice

    At its heart is a rare performance of the landmark 1969 cantata

    THE GATES OF JUSTICE
    by Dave Brubeck

    Based on Hebrew liturgy, African American spirituals, & Martin Luther King Jr.'s speeches, the work is scored for jazz trio, brass ensemble, chorus, tenor, baritone.
    (The tenor role is written in the Cantorial style of the Jewish temple;
    the baritone in the Spiritual style of the African-American church)

    A fighter for civil rights, Brubeck—who was neither Jewish nor Black—wrote 
    Gates of Justice in an effort to unify Blacks & Jews after the assassination of MLK Jr.

    UCLA's 3-day deep dive into The Gates of Justice places it in new context
    through momentous performances and a day-long conference

    HIGHLIGHTS OF THIS GATES OF JUSTICE:

    In a historic first, Brubeck's sons Darius, Chris, and Dan perform the jazz trio in their father's work

    A choir of Black and Jewish singers from Los Angeles-area churches and synagogues alongside UCLA students and the  award-winning chorus Tonality, led by Alexander Lloyd Blake

    Azi Schwartz, famed cantor of New York's Park Avenue Synagogue, and acclaimed baritone Phillip Bullock are the soloists

    Program also features works by 6 contemporary composers addressing social justice, including a commissioned world premiere by multi-Grammy winner Arturo O'Farrill, entitled Still Waiting... 

    FEBRUARY 26:  Performance at UCLA Royce Hall (to be livestreamed as well)
    FEBRUARY 27:  Day-long conference with musicians & prominent scholars
    FEBRUARY 28:  Performance in a local Black church


    JUMP TO FULL SCHEDULE

    WATCH THE TEASER
    ______________________

    PART TWO OF MUSIC AND JUSTICE COMING MAY 18, 2023
    West Coast premiere of Lera Auerbach's Symphony No. 6 (“Vessels of Light”)
    honors Japanese consul Chiune Sugihara, who risked his life
    to save 6,000 Jews in Lithuania during WWII.

    ______________________

    Los Angeles, CA — The newly opened Lowell Milken Center for Music of American Jewish Experience at The UCLA Herb Alpert  School of Music announces the launch of MUSIC AND JUSTICE, a series of concerts and dialogue bringing artists and academics together to deep-dive into race and social justice issues in the modern world. 

    The kick-off is a monumental three-day festival, February 26-28, centered around THE GATES OF JUSTICE, jazz legend Dave Brubeck’s rarely presented large-scale sacred composition. In the liner notes to the recording that came out in 1970 on Decca Records (now out of print), Brubeck wrote: "Concentrating on the historic and spiritual parallels of Jews and American blacks, I hoped through the juxtaposition and amalgamation of a variety of musical styles to construct a bridge upon which the universal theme of brotherhood could be communicated."

    A historic performance of The Gates of Justice takes place Sunday, February 26 at 4:00 p.m. in Royce Hall on the UCLA campus, with Brubeck's sons as the accompanying jazz trio for the first time ever. The balance of the program features six socially conscious works by contemporary composers, including a world premiere by the great Arturo O'Farrill. A second performance of this entire program takes place at a local Black church in Los Angeles, Holman United Methodist Church, on Tuesday, February 28 at 7:30 p.m.. And on Monday, February 27, a daylong public conference features prominent scholars and experts exploring the historical and cultural connections of Black and Jewish communities in the United States, intimate analyses of Brubeck’s Gates of Justice, and the contemporary relevance of music to social justice. 

    Brubeck composed Gates of Justice in the aftermath of the 1968 assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. It was commissioned by the umbrella organization of America's Reform Judaism movement specifically to address increasing tensions between the Jewish and African American communities. But to Dave and his wife Iola Brubeck (Iola composed lyrics for Gates and compiled a textual tapestry of biblical and Hebrew liturgical excerpts, quotes from Dr. King’s speeches and the Jewish sage, Hillel, and songs from African American spirituals), the work had a more universal message concerning "the brotherhood of man." Social justice was a key part of Brubeck's moral core. 

    In the words of Mark  Kligman, director of the Lowell Milken Center for Music of American Jewish Experience: “Through music, dialogue and the exchange of ideas, Music and Justice will demonstrate how the Milken Center engages with important issues and aligns with the aspirations of The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music for scholarship and performance at the highest level. Brubeck’s Gates of Justice shows a creative and inspiring response to trauma. There is no better time than now to reintroduce the world to Brubeck’s composition as a means for racial reconciliation and national healing. Our performances will provide students and professionals a unique experience to musically express the Jewish concept of Tikkun Olam [repairing the world].”

    Eileen Strempel, inaugural dean of The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music, describes Gates of Justice as "a work of magical musical beauty that by its sheer compelling artistry rivets the listener into the journey of being a better version of ourselves both as individuals and as a country. This work resonates with our time; its struggles and inspiration should not be missed."

    In a historic first, the jazz trio performing Gates of Justice will be Brubeck’s sons Darius Brubeck (piano), Chris Brubeck (bass), and Dan Brubeck (drums). The three perform regularly as Brubecks Play Brubeck, but this marks the first time they come together to play Gates. Joining them will be UCLA students, professional musicians, and accomplished soloists under the direction of Neal Stulberg, director of orchestral studies and professor of conducting at The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music. 

    Phillip K. Bullock is the baritone soloist in Gates. Equally at home in opera, gospel, and pop music, Bullock was heralded in Opera News for his “appealingly suave baritone” and "strong presence." A champion of new music, he most recently premiered two roles in the critically acclaimed new opera Castor & Patience by Gregory Spears and Tracy K. Smith. Bullock will be joined by Azi Schwartz, senior cantor of Park Avenue Synagogue in New York. Schwartz is a world-renowned singer and recording artist whose music reaches both Jewish and interfaith audiences internationally.

    A remarkable choir joins the soloists on stage. It combines singers from local African-American churches, synagogues, UCLA, and Tonality, the award-winning vocal ensemble noted for its adventurous, socially conscious programming and “open-hearted singing.” Under the direction of founder Dr. Alexander Lloyd Blake, Tonality is dedicated to representing the diverse cultures of Los Angeles. Both the LA Times and the NYT have taken note of Blake's work in anti-racism within classical music.

    Juxtaposed with The Gates of Justice will be six works by contemporary composers addressing issues of social justice, including two fascinating world premieres: Still Waiting... by six-time Grammy winner and UCLA professor of music Arturo O’Farrill, based on the promises of civil rights; and Dear Freedom Riders by composer/singer/pianist/conductor Diane White-Clayton, written for 13 UCLA student singers who symbolize the 1st 1961 group of 13 Freedom Riders. Vocal works by Joel ThompsonJared JenkinsNick Strimpleand Gerald Cohen round out the program. 

    A pre-concert lecture at 2:30 p.m. features a discussion with composer, teacher and musician Darius Brubeck, and Wall Street Journal music critic and culture reporter Larry Blumenfeld. Darius, the oldest son of Dave Brubeck (named after the French Jewish composer Darius Milhaud, Brubeck's teacher at Mills College), is an educator who initiated the first Jazz Studies Degree offered by an African university, and currently tours with the London-based Darius Brubeck Quartet, whose album Live in Poland was heralded by Downbeat Magazine as one of the best in 2020.

    At the conference on February 27, the keynote address will be given by Dwight Andrews, professor of music theory and African American music at Emory University. Andrews is a composer, musician, educator, and minister whose professional credits include compositions for film and television and playing on over two dozen jazz and new music albums. He has held distinguished professorships at Yale, Harvard, and Emory University and is currently writing a book about Black music and race.

    WATCH: Teaser for The Gates of Justice at UCLA

    *   *   *
    ABOUT THE LOWELL MILKEN CENTER FOR MUSIC OF AMERICAN JEWISH EXPERIENCE

    schoolofmusic.ucla.edu/resources/lowellmilkenmaje

    Launched in 2020, the Lowell Milken Center for Music of American Jewish Experience (UCLA MAJE) is the first permanent academic home for the study of the music of the American Jewish experience. UCLA MAJE was established by a generous gift of $6.75 million from the Lowell Milken Family Foundation. Housed in The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music, UCLA MAJE fosters artistic creativity, scholarship, performance, and other cultural expressions. UCLA MAJE is a natural outgrowth of the Milken Archive of Jewish Music, established in 1990 to record, preserve, and disseminate music inspired by over 350 years of Jewish life in the U.S. The opening of the center coincided with the Brubeck centennial and the 50th anniversary of Gates of Justice.

    Milken, a graduate of UCLA School of Law, is an international businessman and philanthropist who chairs National Reality, the largest property owner of early childhood centers in the US, and the London-based Heron International, a worldwide leader in property development. Milken is known for his philanthropy in education, music, and design. His previous giving established the Lowell Milken Institute for Business Law and Policy at UCLA School of Law, along with the Lowell Milken Family Centennial Scholars Endowed Scholarship Fund for student-athletes.

    “Shaped by Jews from every corner of the globe, who absorbed their host cultures while retaining their Jewish heritage, the archive is as diverse and beautiful as America itself,” Milken said. “From the outset, our vision was to create a living archive, making education central to our mission. The partnership with The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music positions the new center as a global leader in the field of music of the American Jewish experience.”

    schoolofmusic.ucla.edu/music-and-justice

    For further information, press tickets, photos, and to arrange interviews,
    please contact Aleba & Co. at 212/206-1450 or aleba@alebaco.com.

    Click here to view the full release.

  • November 17, 2022 9:59 AM | Jessica Painter (Administrator)

    Tal Becker, Legal Adviser to the Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in a Not-To-Be-Missed Conversation about Israel and the Jewish People

    Boston, Massachusetts – On November 17, The Shalom Hartman Institute hosts Tal Becker, at Temple Emanuel in Newton, MA where he will explore the role Israel plays in the spiritual, physical, and psychological development of the Jewish people today.   

    Becker, Legal Adviser of Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Senior Fellow at the Hartman Kogod Research Center states, 

    “Israel has played many different roles throughout Jewish history. In the twentieth century, Jews looked to Israel to make them whole and guarantee survival. As we come to terms with a new era of Jewish power and Jewish vulnerability, what role does Israel play in the development of the Jewish people today?” 

    He answers this question and more at the inaugural event for Hartman’s newly formed regional Boston office.  

    According to Rabbi Emily Goldberg Winer, who heads Hartman’s Boston presence, the decision to expand into this region, Hartman’s seventh in North America, came from a need for more in-depth Jewish programming and engagement in this vibrant, diverse community,  

    “The Boston Jewish community feels simultaneously robust and tight-knit. Movers and innovators are creating real change in our communal discourse here, and I feel so humbled to be a part of it.”  

    The Shalom Hartman Institute, the leading center of applied Jewish thought and education serving Israel and North America is partnering with Combined Jewish Philanthropies (CJP) and Spark CJP to host this event. 

    Rabbi Marc Baker, President, and CEO, CJP shared: 

    “We are excited to partner with the Shalom Hartman Institute as we invest in a deeply engaged Jewish community and a vibrant, creative, Jewish future. Together, we will inspire courageous leaders who find meaning and strength in the relevance and depth of our Jewish tradition; and we will ensure that dynamic Jewish ideas empower our diverse, passionate community to co-create our future and to wrestle with the most pressing issues of our time - including Jewish Peoplehood, Zionism, democracy, and pluralism.” 

    Thursday’s inaugural event marks the Institute’s long-lasting commitment to the Boston community to engage in in-depth learning across a variety of settings and modalities.  

    For all media inquiries contact:

    Rabbi Emily Goldberg Winer: emily.winer@shalomhartman.org or (954) 980-0401. 

  • November 10, 2022 9:00 AM | Laura Herring (Administrator)

    Shalom Hartman Institute Welcomes Dr. Claire E. Sufrin as Editor of  Sources: A Journal of Jewish Ideas featuring informed conversations, and thoughtful disagreement on Jewish issues that matter

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    New York, New York –When the Fall 2022 issue of the Sources Journal hits people’s mailboxes, there will be a new name on the masthead. Sufrin, recently named Editor of Sources, the Shalom Hartman Institute’s scholarly publication of Jewish ideas, is also co-editor of The New Jewish Canon, a collection of the most significant Jewish ideas and debates of the past two generations. 

    This issue of Sources, Sufrin’s first and the Institute’s fourth, opens with essays on Zionism from Dr. Yehuda Kurtzer, Dr. Donniel Hartman, Dr. Mijal Bitton, and Dr. Masua Sagiv who delve into topics ranging from political liberalism to Jewish solidarity to Israeli national identity, to Jewish perspectives on power.   

    Also included is a roundtable discussion addressing how a Jewish community might recover after discovering a sexual predator in its midst. The issue closes with a series of meditations on the Shema, the most well-known Jewish prayer, by philosopher Dr. Samuel Fleishhacker.   

    When the opportunity to edit Sources arose, Sufrin’s love of Judaism as an intellectual project led her to say yes: “Just as collections of Midrash preserve multiple conflicting interpretations of biblical stories, Judaism not only tolerates but at times seems to encourage conversation and even disagreement …in pursuit of finding meaning and defining values.” 

    Her unique perspective introduces traditional Jewish ideas to explain the social and emotional ethos of this moment:  

     “The definition of a scholar has expanded to include women and others  whose voices are largely missing from the Talmud... Sources exists to  nurture and curate conversation about the issues motivating and  perplexing Jews today and the ideas that they find themselves  turning over and over."

    Before joining Hartman, Sufrin taught for 12 years at the Crown Family Center for Jewish and Israel Studies at Northwestern University. She holds a BA in Religious Studies from Yale University and a Ph.D. in Religious Studies from Stanford University.

    The Shalom Hartman Institute is a leading center of Jewish thought and education, serving Israel and North America. The Institute is committed to the big relevant ideas impacting Jewish communities today and to ensuring that Judaism is a compelling force for good in the 21st century. 

    To interview Dr. Sufrin and any Sources contributors, email: Jan.greenfield@shalomhartman.org
  • November 04, 2022 9:35 AM | Jessica Painter (Administrator)

    Hartman Digital to release Heretic in the House this month - A Groundbreaking Podcast Dismantling Stereotypes About Orthodox Jews Hosted by Naomi Seidman 

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    What happens when the biggest thing in your life is the story that you’re trying to put behind you? On Heretic in the House, a limited podcast series, host Naomi Seidman takes us on a deeply moving journey with people who have left the Hassidic community, to uncover their hidden stories.  

    Seidman is a professor, author, and 2016 Guggenheim Fellow. Raised ultra-Orthodox, she “left the path” for the outside world when she was eighteen: 

    "When you leave the Hassidic community, there is a story of leaving and a story of being left behind. People are fascinated by it. On Heretic in the House, we probe why these stories are so captivating for Jews and non-Jews alike and, most importantly, what parts of the story are conspicuously excluded.”  

    America has a fascination with Hasidic Jews, whether in shows like Netflix’s Unorthodox, news reports about Orthodox schools, or memoirs but these popular depictions don’t tell the whole story; they just tell the story the public wants to hear. What they hide is a complicated dance between Orthodox Judaism and those who leave it, and a web of stereotypes that trap Hasidim, rebels, and the public alike. 

    The Heretic in the House podcast tells powerful stories about real, complex people, family drama, and challenging personal odysseys. It talks about a truth that you won’t see in popular depictions: when people leave Hasidic communities, the door almost never completely shuts behind them. Join us on Heretic in The House as we open that door for the first time.  

    This podcast is the first in a series of new releases from Hartman Digital, the audio and video production wing of the Shalom Hartman Institute. Included on the slate for later this year; Perfect Jewish Parents podcast, and in early 2023, a new YouTube series, Kosher in America.  

    The Shalom Hartman Institute is a leading center of Jewish thought and education, serving Israel and North America. The Institute is committed to the big relevant ideas impacting Jewish communities today and to ensuring that Judaism is a compelling force for good in the 21st century. 

    For all media inquiries and to interview Seidman: Jan.greenfield@shalomhartman.org
  • October 31, 2022 10:40 AM | Jessica Painter (Administrator)

    Israel’s Election Day: Live Behind the Scenes with New York Times Bestselling Author, Yossi Klein Halevi and Rabbi Dr. Donniel Hartman, President of the Shalom Hartman Institute 

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    Jerusalem, Israel – On November 1, at 2:00 pm ET, as the polls close on Israel’s fifth election in less than four years, Hartman and Klein Halevi will offer real-time insights on the big ideas of this complex moment and what it portends for the State of Israel, the future of Zionism, and the Jewish people. 

    Rabbi Dr. Donniel Hartman is president of the Shalom Hartman Institute and the founder of some of the most extensive education, training, and enrichment programs for scholars, educators, rabbis, and religious and lay leaders in Israel and North America. He is joined by  Yossi Klein Halevi, the author of the New York Times bestseller,  Letters to My Palestinian Neighbor, Like Dreamers: The Story of the Israeli Paratroopers Who Reunited Jerusalem and Divided a Nation, and other celebrated books. Hartman, Klein Halevi, and Elana Stein Hain co-host Hartman’s chart-topping podcast, For Heaven’s Sake.  

    Reflecting on the public mood, Klein Halevi shares, "There's a great deal of understandable anxiety among many Israelis and friends of Israel abroad about what these elections could mean for the future of Israeli democracy. Our hope is to provide some context and clarity at the most emotionally loaded moment of the election season -- the moment the real results start coming in." 

    This special live election day event is part of Ideas for Today, free curated courses on the most important Jewish issues of the day so we can think and do better. This fall’s course offerings include classes byworld renowned Hartman scholars including Yehuda Kurtzer, Dahlia Lithwick, Michael AviHelfand, Tamara Mann Tweel, and Imam Abdullah Antepli.  

    The Shalom Hartman Institute is a leading center of Jewish thought and education, serving Israel and North America. The Institute is committed to the big relevant ideas impacting Jewish communities today and to ensuring that Judaism is a compelling force for good in the 21st century. 

    For all media inquiries and to interview Rabbi Hartman or Mr. Klein Halevi, contact: Jan.greenfield@shalomhartman.org  

    https://www.hartman.org.il/event/israels-election-day-live-behind-the-scenes/ 


  • October 20, 2022 10:36 AM | Laura Herring (Administrator)

    New Nonprofit Focused on 3G’s - Third Generation Holocaust Survivors

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    Los Angeles, California (October 2022). If You Heard What I Heard is delighted to announce its newly established nonprofit status, allowing the organization to continue capturing the stories of grandchildren of Holocaust survivors (3Gs) – the last generation to hear survivor stories firsthand.

    Initially launched as an independent project in April 2021, If You Heard What I Heard started in response to a rise in antisemitism. If You Heard What I Heard’s mission is to educate today’s generation and future generations about the Holocaust by making the stories of survivors more relatable for today. The organization seeks to curb antisemitism, create a world that is more empathetic, tolerant, and compassionate towards all groups of people, and live up to the promise to Holocaust survivors everywhere that the world will #NeverForget.

    “As the grandchild of two Holocaust survivors,” explains If You Heard What I Heard Founder & Chair Carolyn Siegel, “it’s very scary to see a rise in antisemitism because they always talked to me about the importance of warning signs leading to the Holocaust being possible - a rise in antisemitism being one of them. When I started If You Heard What I Heard, I thought about the fact that my future children will never get to hear the stories that I heard firsthand, over the course of decades, of what my grandparents lived through, what they lost, and how they rebuilt their lives after all of that. I wanted to do something to make stories like theirs more relatable for today, and I thought, if you could hear the story from someone like me, through social media and online, in a shorter form, we could create awareness about the Holocaust to try and curb hate, not just towards Jews, but towards any group.”

    In an effort to offer a different way of educating about the Holocaust, If You Heard What I Heard hopes to reach new audiences and leverage the power of storytelling to make this part of Holocaust education feel a lot more personal. As a nonprofit, the hope is to be able to scale efforts in a larger way, so that every grandchild of a Holocaust survivor who wants to share their story through If You Heard What I Heard, can do so, continuing to create widespread awareness about the Holocaust.

    This is the first nonprofit of its kind to focus on capturing the stories of 3Gs - third generation Holocaust survivors - by filming 30 minute interviews, which are available for free at www.ifyouheardwhatiheard.com.

    About If You Heard What I Heard

    If You Heard What I Heard is a collection of interviews of grandchildren of Holocaust survivors, recounting the pain, loss, and physical and emotional scars of their grandparents. What you’ll hear is a secondhand account of Holocaust survivors’ harrowing journeys, devastating loss and inspiring resilience. This is the first time in over 20 years that a project of this nature this has been produced.

    For additional details please contact
    Samantha Moray
    samantha@moraygency.com

  • September 13, 2022 9:54 AM | Jessica Painter (Administrator)

    Shalom Hartman Institute Expands to Boston

    Boston is the newest of the Shalom Hartman Institute of North America’s seven regional hubs with a professional staff presence. 

    The Shalom Hartman Institute (SHI), the leading center of applied Jewish thought and education serving Israel and North America is excited to announce the opening of a new regional office in Boston.

    Hartman will partner with Combined Jewish Philanthropies (CJP) and local organizations alongside lay and professional leaders to bring relevant ideas and conversations to the community through cohort experiences, public programs, and educational seminars with Hartman scholars. Boston serves as the newest of the Shalom Hartman Institute of North America’s seven regional offices with a professional staff presence.

    “We live in challenging times and face many threats to our Jewish future. Hartman learning offers us a way to face those challenges and secure our future. I am thrilled CJP and Hartman have launched this partnership to bring Hartman to Boston.” Amy Klein, Hartman Institute Board Member

    Working to understand the specific regional questions and challenges while helping to shape the Jewish communal conversation is an essential part of Hartman’s core mission. “We are grateful for the close partnership and relationship that we have cultivated with CJP to help move this work forward in Boston,” noted Rebecca Starr, Hartman’s Director of Regional Programs.

    The decision to expand to Boston was made possible, in large part, by the Institute’s longstanding positive relationship with CJP.

    “After more than two years of disconnection during COVID, we are thrilled to partner with the Hartman Institute as we launch Spark, a multi-year communitywide initiative to connect to each other, our Boston Jewish community, and to Israel on her 75th birthday,” said Kimberlee Schumacher, Vice President of Partnerships and Services at CJP. “Spark will offer an opportunity for participants to learn from and with Hartman scholars and to participate in conversations that have the power to animate our Jewish future.”

    Rabbi Emily Goldberg Winer will head the Boston operations and manage local programming. A Wexner Graduate Fellow and 92nd Street Y Jewish Innovation Fellow, Winer received her ordination from Yeshivat Maharat in Riverdale, NY. She moved to Boston earlier this summer and is already immersing herself in the community.

    “The Boston Jewish community feels simultaneously robust and tight knit. There are movers and innovators creating real change in our communal discourse here, and I feel so humbled to be a part of it.” Emily Goldberg Winer

    “CJP is excited to partner with the Shalom Hartman Institute as we invest in a deeply engaged Jewish community and a vibrant, creative, Jewish future,” said Marc Baker, President and CEO of CJP. “We hope to inspire courageous leaders to find meaning and strength in the relevance and depth of our Jewish tradition and ensure that dynamic Jewish ideas empower our diverse community. Together we will wrestle with the most pressing issues of our time: Jewish Peoplehood, Zionism, democracy, and pluralism.”

    To learn more about our expanding work in Boston and to partner with us contact Emily Winer, Manager of Boston at emily.winer@shalomhartman.org or (954) 980-0401.

    https://www.hartman.org.il/shalom-hartman-institute-expands-to-boston/

  • August 29, 2022 10:53 AM | Jessica Painter (Administrator)

    “Unspools like a not-so-minor miracle. It’s a work of poetry, power and ruminative grace.” - Ann Hornaday, The Washington Post

    "A transfixing film that evokes a vanished world, explores historical memory and ponders film's ability to bring the past to life.” - Fresh Air, NPR

    "A snapshot, a memorial, a knotty philosophical detective story, and a devastating account of Nazi atrocities. It’s also an extended rumination on the illusory, entropic nature of the cinematic medium itself." - The Los Angeles Times

    "A Holocaust film like no other, Stigter’s non-fiction work speaks volumes, in only 72 minutes, about loss, time, tragedy and remembrance, all of it expressed in grainy color and black-and-white footage whose origins are mundane but whose lasting impact proves extraordinary." - The Daily Beast

    Now Playing in Select Theaters
    Find theaters at www.threeminutesfilm.com.

    Email threeminutes@superltd.com to request a link for review coverage or inquire about group tickets or to host a screening for your organization.
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