Arts and Culture

LFA helps local businesses save money, energy

Instructor Virgil Jones, left, works on a piece in the Sonoran Glass School’s hot shop. (Courtesy Sonoran Glass)

This spring, 11 locally owned businesses began learning how they could become more sustainable through a Local First Arizona pilot program called SCALE UP, which stands for Sustainable Communities Accessing Lending and Expertise Upon Performance. Representatives of these businesses met weekly for six weeks with local experts to learn… Read more »

‘Manchester by the Sea’ director’s latest Broadway play follows a Jewish family dealing with tragedy

Elaine May stars in Kenneth Lonergan's "The Waverly Gallery," her first Broadway appearance in over 50 years. (Brigitte Lacombe)

(JTA) — On the phone last week, just before the revival of his play “The Waverly Gallery” opened on Broadway, Kenneth Lonergan sounded harried. There had been some set malfunctions earlier in the week, just as critics were getting ready to start their reviews. He acknowledged the play is… Read more »

Jazz piano to open JFSA Northwest campaign

Jon Simon

Jazz composer and performer Jon Simon will headline an evening of music and dining on Tuesday, Nov. 27 to launch the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona Northwest Division’s annual campaign. Simon tours North America performing selections from his ninth and latest album, “SOAR,” as well as five highly successful… Read more »

Tucson J, partners to mark Kristallnacht anniversary

"Kristallnacht: Shattered, Yet Unbroken" mandala by Robert Wertz

Kristallnacht, the Night of Broken Glass, refers to the windows broken at  synagogues, homes, and Jewish-owned businesses that were plundered and destroyed during a wave of violent anti-Jewish pogroms on Nov. 9 and 10, 1938 throughout Germany, Austria, and the Czech Sudetenland. The event is commonly thought to be… Read more »

For artist, writer and community volunteer Anne Lowe, there is no off season

Anne Lowe (Micheal Romero)

Between heading local organizations or sitting on  boards, volunteering with humanitarian efforts or creating art, Anne Lowe, 70, finds time for everything and shows no sign of stopping. For nine years, she served as Northwest Jewish Connections coordinator (later Northwest Division director) and outreach director for the Jewish Federation… Read more »

Children’s program to blend music, mitzvot

Rabbi Israel Becker

A new musical program, Music, Memories, and Mitzvot, will weave song, stories, and learning about Jewish celebrations with the mitzvah of bringing joy to the elderly, says Rabbi Israel Becker of Congregation Chofetz Chayim. The program, for children ages 5-11, includes three Sunday classes in preparation for each of four… Read more »

Pianist David Syme to give concert at Temple Emanu-El

David Syme

Internationally renowned concert pianist David Syme will perform at Temple Emanu-El, Saturday, Nov. 3 at 7 p.m.  Syme is a distinguished soloist, an alumnus of Juilliard, and has over 20 CDs to his name. He makes regular appearances with orchestras such as the Royal Philharmonic, the Vienna Symphony, and… Read more »

When Dutch Jews found haven in an anti-Semitic Hungary

A Jewish family reunited in Budapest in 1943 following the arrival there of family members from Holland. (Courtesy of Willy Lindwer)

AMSTERDAM (JTA) — When her classmates were sent from occupied Holland to death camps, Emmy Korodi and her Dutch-Jewish family were safe in Hungary — one of Nazi Germany’s closest allies. Her family were among some 90 Jews who, at the height of World War II, survived for the unlikeliest… Read more »

A Venezuelan-American chef wants to show the rich culinary tradition of Latino Jews

Deborah Benaim is creating a cookbook to showcase her family's food, which has influences from Morocco, Spain, Moldova and Venezuela. (Courtesy of Benaim)

  (JTA) — Food has always been a way for Deborah Benaim’s family to connect to its roots. A typical Shabbat dinner featured dishes such as traditional Ashkenazi braided challah bread, Moroccan-style whitefish with red pepper paste and a Venezuelan hearts of palm salad. “I think it’s in my… Read more »

A film on a forgotten Holocaust resistance fighter rocked the box office in Holland

Walraven van Hall, right, and his brother Gijs in the 1930s. (Courtesy of the van Hall family)

AMSTERDAM (JTA) — Opposite the Dutch national bank here lies one of Europe’s least conspicuous monuments to a war hero. Titled “Fallen Tree,” the metal statue for resistance fighter Walraven van Hall looks so realistic that for months after its unveiling in 2010, the municipality would receive calls reporting… Read more »

A black, Orthodox rabbi’s novel addresses racism in the Jewish community

Shais Rishon's latest book, "Ariel Samson: Freelance Rabbi," tells the story of a 20-something black rabbi. (Courtesy of Rishon)

NEW YORK (JTA) — When Shais Rishon thinks of American Jewish literature, virtually no Jews of color come to mind — as characters or authors. “We’re invisible, pretty much,” he told JTA. As an African-American Orthodox rabbi, Rishon hopes to change that. He recently published a semi-autobiographical novel titled “Ariel Samson:… Read more »

The tragic tale of Superman’s Jewish creators, told in graphic novel form

The cover of "The Joe Shuster Story: The Artist Behind Superman," by Julian Voloj and illustrated by Thomas Campi. (Super Genius)

(JTA) – When Joe Shuster and Jerry Siegel created the Superman character in the early 1930s, they were still living at their parents’ homes. Of course, the character and his story — the arrival from another planet, his dual identities as mild-mannered reporter and flying, bulletproof crime fighter  —… Read more »

Want to teach your dog Yiddish? There’s a class for that.

Ann Toback demonstrates the "shpring" command with her dog, Jesse, while trainer Miguel Rodriguez, left, and Yiddishist Leyzer Burko can be seen looking on. (Josefin Dolsten)

NEW YORK (JTA) — Dogs and their owners are a common sight in Central Park on the weekend, but there was something different about the group gathered on the grass on a recent Sunday morning. The approximately 20 people could be seen and heard pointing at the ground while… Read more »