Arts and Culture

What’s behind the dark charisma of ‘Son of Saul’ star Geza Rohrig?

Geza Rohrig, right, and other members of the “Son of Saul” cast in Berlin, Germany, Jan. 26, 2016. (Cnaan Liphshiz)Geza Rohrig, right, and other members of the “Son of Saul” cast in Berlin, Germany, Jan. 26, 2016. (Cnaan Liphshiz)

BERLIN (JTA) — When the Hungarian-Jewish poet Geza Rohrig agreed to play the lead role in the Oscar-nominated Holocaust drama “Son of Saul,” he knew he was taking on a daunting challenge. With very little acting experience, Rohrig, 48, agreed to portray the complex lead in a shoestring production by… Read more »

5 incredible Jewish stories behind this year’s Oscars

Lenny Abrahamson at The Hollywood Reporter's Nominees Night in Beverly Hills, California, Feb. 8, 2016. (Kevin Winter/Getty Images for The Hollywood Reporter)Lenny Abrahamson at The Hollywood Reporter's Nominees Night in Beverly Hills, California, Feb. 8, 2016. (Kevin Winter/Getty Images for The Hollywood Reporter)

NEW YORK (JTA) — It’s the biggest night of the year in Hollywood, so it’s not surprising that Jews are typically well-represented among the annual list of Oscar nominations. But this year, in the absence a major Jewish-themed film, the Jewiness of this year’s Oscars is of the quieter… Read more »

At kosher ski restaurant in Park City, an avalanche of challenges

Park City Mountain in Utah, where America's only kosher slopeside restaurant is located, is also the nation's largest ski area, at 7,300 acres. (Uriel Heilman)Park City Mountain in Utah, where America's only kosher slopeside restaurant is located, is also the nation's largest ski area, at 7,300 acres. (Uriel Heilman)

PARK CITY, Utah (JTA) – Laurent Masliah likes wine as much as the next Frenchman. But that’s not why he bought up every last bottle of kosher wine in the state of Utah and is desperately angling for more. Masliah is the general manager of Prime at Canyons, the… Read more »

Hummus in Hanoi: Israeli chef brings Middle Eastern cuisine to Vietnam

At Daluva, bún chả — a traditional Vietnamese dish of grilled pork and noodles — is made with falafel. (Courtesy of Daluva)At Daluva, bún chả — a traditional Vietnamese dish of grilled pork and noodles — is made with falafel. (Courtesy of Daluva)

HANOI, Vietnam (JTA) — Shahar Lubin earned his culinary chops in Israel and, later the United States, cooking his way through more than 20 restaurants, starting at the age of 16. Still, it was a leap when he moved to Vietnam and opened a restaurant of his own. “I… Read more »

See how teen pals found each other some 50 years later

David Bak, alongside the 1932 Chevrolet Model A he restored, reconnected with a friend he worked with at a Haifa auto repair shop in the late 1960s. (Courtesy of David Bak)David Bak, alongside the 1932 Chevrolet Model A he restored, reconnected with a friend he worked with at a Haifa auto repair shop in the late 1960s. (Courtesy of David Bak)

SEEKING KIN The “Seeking Kin” column aims to help reunite long-lost relatives and friends. (JTA) – As a librarian, Oren Kaplan researches obscure facts and utilizes databases to track down information. So when the Haifa resident read a recent “Seeking Kin” column about someone in his city, Menahem Orenstein,… Read more »

Valentine’s Day: An ideal date for Jewish weddings?

This kippah will be distributed at the wedding of Lena Silver and Aaron Wolfson. (Courtesy of Silver and Wolfson)This kippah will be distributed at the wedding of Lena Silver and Aaron Wolfson. (Courtesy of Silver and Wolfson)

LOS ANGELES (JTA) — In December, around the time my wife and I were celebrating our 35th wedding anniversary, we received an invitation to an outdoor Jewish wedding to be held on Valentine’s Day 2016. Printed on a red postcard affixed with a heart postage stamp, the couple, Lena Silver… Read more »

Invisible Theatre to produce premiere of local playwright’s ‘Deelmayker’

Kathleen Erickson as Anne and Jack Neubeck as Bernie in Warren Bodow’s “Deelmayker” (Tim Fuller)Kathleen Erickson as Anne and Jack Neubeck as Bernie in Warren Bodow’s “Deelmayker” (Tim Fuller)

Invisible Theatre will stage the world premier of Tucson playwright Warren Bodow’s “Deelmayker” Feb. 9-21. “Deelmayker” (the spelling refers to an Internet account) tells the story of Bernie Harris, a charismatic 65-year-old wheeler-dealer living in Palm Springs with a wife he adores. Harris realizes that as he’s been getting… Read more »

Capitol Steps will skewer both sides of aisle at Hillel benefit

capitol steps

When the performers of the Capitol Steps take the stage at the Fox Tucson Theater, there’s a good chance Barack Obama will sing a rock song, Joe Biden will sing a show tune and Chris Christie will dance. Even Vladimir Putin, shirtless, of course, cannot stay off the stage.… Read more »

At Sundance, ‘The Settlers’ trains lens on movement’s extremist fringe

A still from “The Settlers,” which premiered Jan. 22 at the Sundance Film Festival. (Courtesy of Shimon Dotan)A still from “The Settlers,” which premiered Jan. 22 at the Sundance Film Festival. (Courtesy of Shimon Dotan)

PARK CITY, Utah (JTA) – What is a settler? That’s the question that opens the new documentary film “The Settlers,” which premiered last week at the Sundance Film Festival here. Written and directed by Shimon Dotan, the film offers an answer almost immediately: a religious fundamentalist driven by messianic… Read more »