Arts and Culture

Celebrity-studded Saturday Night Seder yields 1M viewers, $2.6M for charity and 4 big insights about the Jewish people

Jason Alexander, upper right, invites non-Jews Josh Groban, upper left, Darren Criss, lower left and Rachel Brosnahan to join in a virtual Seder webcast on YouTube, April 11, 2020. (Screenshot)

(JTA) — With its glittering assembly of stars, jokes that worked and attendees who could, well, sing, it was the Zoom Seder you wished you had. The Saturday Night Passover Seder that aired on YouTube over the weekend brought together dozens of celebrities and raised $2.6 million for the… Read more »

Jewish NFL star Mitch Schwartz embraces his inner chef during coronavirus quarantine

Mitchell Schwartz is having some fun, with food, off the gridiron. (Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images; Mitchell Schwartz/Instagram)

(JTA) — Fresh off his Super Bowl win in February, Kansas City Chiefs lineman Mitchell Schwartz took a vacation with his wife, Brooke, to St. Lucia. Little did they know that when they returned, they would be spending the next few months holed up at home because of the… Read more »

Southern Arizona Yom HaShoah observance to be held online

Editor’s note: To allow for the implementation of enhanced security protections, the registration links have been updated to. Visit  https://www.jewishhistorymuseum.org/yomhashoah2020 In accordance with social distancing to slow the spread of the coronavirus, Southern Arizona’s community-wide Yom HaShoah commemoration this year will take place online at www.jewishhistorymuseum.org between the hours… Read more »

Jewish History Museum seeks entries for new pandemic-era archive

Items from the Oyneg Shabes Archive buried beneath the Warsaw Ghetto include a class schedule in Hebrew and a report on the spread of typhus. (Photos: Ringelblum Archive, Jewish Historical Institute, Warsaw, Poland)

In 1910, a time capsule filled with ephemera was placed in the cornerstone of the historic temple that now serves as the flagship building of the Jewish History Museum. The capsule was buried in the building as part of the inaugural set of projects, services, and celebrations that surrounded… Read more »

He wanted to encapsulate Beijing’s Jewish community in a Passover Haggadah. The coronavirus complicated that.

Artist Leon Fenster says this page of his Beijing-themed Haggadah aims to capture the traditional Haggadah’s "curiously non-chronological form of storytelling." (Courtesy of Fenster)

(JTA) — Unlike Shanghai or Hong Kong, which received Jews fleeing from World War II, Beijing does not have a robust Jewish history. In the words of Joshua Kurtzig, former president of the Reform congregation there, the massive Chinese capital is a “very transient city,” especially for Jews — meaning… Read more »

Taika Waititi adapting anti-Semite Roald Dahl’s work is exactly what we need

Taika Waititi will write, direct and executive produce two series based on the work of Roald Dahl for Netflix, starting with "Charlie and the Chocolate Factor." (Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images)

This story originally appeared on Alma. Netflix just announced that the Academy Award-winning Maori-Jewish filmmaker Taika Waititi will write, direct and executive produce two series based on the work of author Roald Dahl for the streaming platform. The first is based on “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” focusing specifically… Read more »

How to make pastrami gravlax and impress your friends

Serve pastrami gravlax at your next brunch with some good pumpernickel bagels, rye bread, cream cheese and wedges of fresh lemon. (Shannon Sarna)

This story originally appeared on The Nosher. Tell someone you made the gravlax at your next brunch and I promise they will be impressed. The truth is that gravlax is a surprisingly simple dish to make. (Here’s our video and recipe you can follow to make it). There is… Read more »

Tucson’s first mezuzah week set to ensure spiritual security

Rabbi Moshe Peretz Gilden

“Tucson Mezuzah Week’ is the first community-wide opportunity, offered by Congregation Chofetz Chayim and the Southwest Torah Institute, to have every Jewish home in Tucson protected by the mitzvah of placing mezuzot on every doorpost,” says the congregation’s Rabbi Israel Becker. Often called the “Jewish security system,” the mezuzah is… Read more »

ATC Cohorts Club promotes love of theater

Sara Lopez

Arizona Theatre Company launched a new program this year as another way to involve the local community. The program, called the Cohorts Club, gives citizens of Tucson and Phoenix the opportunity to see everything that encompasses a show ATC puts on. Designated members of the public attend rehearsals, tech… Read more »

Rugelach, Syrian pepper dip on menu for Tucson Festival of Books demo

Leah Koenig

Leah Koenig will be representing Jewish cuisine at the Tucson Festival of Books with her new cookbook, “The Jewish Cookbook,” which includes recipes from around the globe. Koenig’s recipes have been featured in the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, New York Magazine’s Grub Street, and other popular… Read more »

Hear balalaikas ringing out at orchestra’s annual concert of music and dance

Folk dancers, musicians, and singers will join the Arizona Balalaika Orchestra for its 40th anniversary concert in Tucson on Saturday, March 7.

The Arizona Balalaika Orchestra’s 40th Anniversary Concert of traditional music and dance of Russia, Poland, Ukraine, and other Slavic countries is Saturday, March 7, at 7 p.m. at Pima Community College Center for the Arts. The 25-member orchestra, founded in 1980 by Mia Bulgarin Gay, presents a wide spectrum… Read more »