Arts and Culture

We need fewer stereotypical Jews on TV — and more Walter Sobchaks

John Goodman, right, plays Walter Sobchak in the Coen brothers' classic film "The Big Lebowski" opposite Jeff Bridges in the title role. (Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

(JTA) — The other day, my Catholic mother-in-law again implored me, her sole Jewish daughter-in-law, to watch “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.” The third season of the award-winning show is expected to air in a few months, so I dutifully resigned myself to the task. But as I watched, I… Read more »

A former lawmaker hopes HBO’s ‘Chernobyl’ spurs change in Israel

A new HBO series portrays the Chernobyl nuclear disaster and aftermath. This image shows a building at the Chernobyl exclusion zone in the abandoned city of Pripyat, Ukraine. (Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

(JTA) — The HBO historical drama “Chernobyl,” which dramatizes the events surrounding the 1986 nuclear explosion in the now-Ukrainian city, has generated plenty of buzz around the world. In addition to garnering critical acclaim, the series has renewed conversation about the incident and even spiked tourism to the area of… Read more »

Tucson natives, plus Italian chef, make Frost gelato a hit

Frost co-founder Jeff Kaiserman, left, enjoys a sorbettini (dairy free milkshake made with sorbet and sparkling water); Chef Nazario Melchionda, center, indulges in marble black cherry gelato, and Stephen Ochoa has a cone with stracciatella and creama di biscotti gelato, May 29. Photo courtesy frost A Gelato Shoppe)

It was a sunny afternoon this May with temps in the ’90s, a preview of this month’s triple digit coming attractions. After lunch at a local café, I craved a dessert that was at once scrumptious and refreshing and wouldn’t break the calorie bank. Light bulb moment! I hurried… Read more »

When young Israelis move to Germany or Austria, it’s a hard pill for their families to swallow

Dan Peled, center, with his father, Gidi, and grandmother Lea. Peled is a main subject of "Back to the Fatherland," a documentary on Israelis moving back to Germany and Austria. (First Run Features)

(JTA) — On the surface, Gil Levanon and Kat Rohrer seem unlikely friends. Levanon is an Israeli, the granddaughter of a Holocaust survivor. Rohrer, an Austrian, is the granddaughter of an avowed Nazi officer. If their friendship seems a little odd, their collaboration on the documentary “Back to the… Read more »

Jewish comedian Jeff Ross defends Netflix roast of Anne Frank

NEW YORK (JTA) — Jewish comedian Jeff Ross defended an episode of a new Netflix series that mocked Anne Frank. Ross drew criticism last month for targeting the teen Holocaust diarist on “Historical Roasts,” where comedians make fun of historical figures. He defended the choice in an interview with the… Read more »

Boston museum pays $500K for rare Torah ornaments

BOSTON (JTA) — The Museum of Fine Arts bought two pairs of rare Torah finials, bidding $500,000 for the 17th-century German silver set. The set is considered among the earliest surviving examples of the ritual Torah ornaments. The final sale price exceeded the pre-auction estimate of between $300,000 and $400,000.… Read more »

Jewish directors dominate at Tony Awards

(JTA) — “Hadestown,” a musical about the Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice and the underworld, won best new musical at the Tony Awards, and a coveted prize for its Jewish director. Rachel Chavkin won the Tony Award for best director of a musical for “Hadestown,” the tenth woman… Read more »

The controversy over the DC Dyke March, Jewish stars and Israel, explained

Rae Gaines, Sarah Beth Alcabes, Jill Raney and a fourth participant in the DC Dyke March (right to left) are members of IfNotNow, a leftist Jewish group critical of Israel. (Courtesy of IfNotNow DC)

(JTA) — Is an LGBTQ parade banning flags with Jewish stars? Yes. Not really. Kind of. The D.C. Dyke March, a social justice-focused parade for, in its words, “queer liberation” happening Friday, announced that it is not welcoming any “nationalist symbols.” That includes Israeli flags and American flags, the… Read more »

Why you should be grilling like an Israeli this summer

(iStock)

This story originally appeared on The Nosher. Israelis love their barbecue. They do it on the beach. They do it on their hikes. They grill whenever and wherever possible — empty parking lot? Let’s do it! When that smoky aroma fills the air, you know a celebratory meal is… Read more »

Jews for Justice plan summer community concert

Bat Florence Portugal

Tucson Jews for Justice will present a “Tucson Jewish Summer Arts Festival — A Night of Music, Laughs and Light” on Saturday, June 15 at 7:30 p.m. at the Jewish History Museum, 564 S. Stone Ave. Tony Zinman, a Tucson Jews for Justice co-founder, explains that the evening was… Read more »

These sweet cheese buns are perfect for Shavuot

(Rachel Ringler)

This story originally appeared on The Nosher. You’ve probably heard of cheesecake or blintzes as traditional foods to enjoy for the Jewish holiday of Shavuot, but get ready to fall in love with a cheese-filled carb treat you have never heard of: Bessarabian cheese buns. This family recipes come… Read more »

First openly gay Orthodox rabbi ordained in Jerusalem

Newly ordained Rabbi Daniel Atwood is congratulated by Rabbi Daniel Landes at the Jerusalem Theater on May 26, 2019. (Sam Sokol)

JERUSALEM (JTA) — A gay rabbinical student denied ordination by a liberal seminary in New York was welcomed into the rabbinate in Jerusalem, breaking a longstanding taboo against homosexuality in the Orthodox community. Daniel Landes, a prominent American-Israeli rabbi, granted semichah, Hebrew for ordination, to Daniel Atwood alongside a… Read more »

#NoAdultingAllowed at Tucson J one-day adult camp

Updated with new date, July 14, on June 5, 2019. The Tucson Jewish Community Center will hold its “One Day Adult Summer Camp — Color War Edition” on Sunday, July 14, building off last year’s successful event. The camp, which will begin at 9:30 a.m. with check-in and a… Read more »

Museum’s scholar-in-residence seeks interview subjects

Maxwell Greenberg

The Jewish History Museum/Holocaust History Center will welcome its first scholar-in-residence, Maxwell Greenberg of the University of California, Los Angeles, later this month. Greenberg, a doctoral candidate in UCLA’s Cesar E. Chavez Department of Chicano/a Studies, will discuss his research in the museum’s final gallery chat for the season,… Read more »

Why so many Jews love the band Phish

Phish performs on "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon," Oct. 10, 2016. The band members are, from left: Page McConnell on keyboard, Trey Anastasio on guitar, Jon Fishman (barely pictured) on drums and Mike Gordon on bass. (Andrew Lipovsky/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank)

(JTA) — Gary Stein remembers the first time someone played a Phish song for him in high school. It was “Divided Sky,” an intricate 11-minute tune that shows off the group’s diverse jam rock chops. Stein, who’s now a 30-year-old history doctoral student living in Los Angeles, quickly became… Read more »