NEXT STOP: A COMEDY OF MISCONNECTIONS
Fresh off the boat, Hazan (Ben Perry), an Israeli newcomer to New York, is suffering from IPAD — “Israeli Personality Assimilation Disorder.” “Everybody knows, by an early age, what’s considered appropriate and what isn’t,” his American therapist attempts to explain. “[But] you don’t.” As he bumbles through failed dates and start-up schemes, Hazan bumps into Maya (Noga Milstein) — an Israeli-American would-be actress who is just too American for him — though she’s still too Israeli for her American prospects. Written by Milstein and produced by Israeli-American movie star Mili Avital (for whom Milstein used to babysit), this rom-com explores the Israeli-American culture gap, and whether it’s bridgeable. — Tuesday, Nov. 7, 8 p.m., Broadway Comedy Club, 318 W. 53rd St., (212) 757-2323, nextstoptheshow.com.
In October 1911, Polish actor Yitzchak (Jak) Lowy and his Yiddish theater troupe toured Prague, where they developed a complicated relationship with an emerging local author named Franz Kafka. This little-known connection between two well known Jewish icons is the topic of late playwright Lu Hauser’s last comedy (he died in 2011). Loosely based on the characters of Jak Lowy and his leading lady, Mme. Trassik — a notoriously bullheaded couple that was nonetheless dynamite on stage — the play charts how the vagabond troupe ends up attracting, and later entrapping, a sympathetic local writer named Gregor Samsa. — Opens Thursday, Nov. 9 (through Nov. 25), Theater for the New City, 155 First Avenue, (212) 254-1109, theaterforthenewcity.net.
ACCORDIONIST URI SHARLIN
Playing global music with a New York edge, Israeli-born accordionist Uri Sharlin — a “wonderfully free-flowing accordionist” (All About Jazz) — deftly weaves jazz, Balkan beats, Arabic modes and Brazilian harmonies into an explosively danceable mix. Sharlin will join forces with Max ZT — the “Jimi Hendrix of Hammered Dulcimer,” says NPR — in an exploration of African and Indian influences. Prepare for a wild multicultural ride. — Sunday, Nov. 12, 5 p.m., Barbès, 376 Ninth St., Brooklyn, (347) 422-0248, barbesbrooklyn.com. $10.
Emmy-winning “Letterman” writer Ted Greenberg presents a coming-of-age comedy set on the nine-year anniversary of his long-overdue Harvard college paper. He’s living under the shadow of his father, Ace Greenberg — a Wall Street legend — while scratching out a living as a cabbie. Turn in the paper by midnight or lose his chance — forever — to be a Harvard grad. — Through Nov. 5, West Side YMCA, The Marjorie S. Deane Little Theater, 5 W. 63rd St., (212) 912-2600, ymcanyc.org/westside.
“Lili Marlene” was the title of a World War II-era German song that became popular with both the Axis and the Allies. Set in pre-WWII Berlin, this similarly titled Off-Broadway musical (with book and music by Michael Antin) centers on the fictional character of Rosie Pen (Amy Londyn), a Jewish cabaret singer whose rendition of the song makes it famous. With Nazism on the rise, Rosie’s unlikely love affair with a young German count named Willi (Clint Hromsco) drives them both to seek ways out of the country. — Tuesdays through Dec. 19, 7 p.m., St. Luke’s Theatre, 308 W. 46th St., (212) 239-6200, Telecharge.com.
BERNSTEIN CENTENNIAL FESTIVAL
The New York Philharmonic celebrates the centennial of its onetime maestro, Leonard Bernstein, with a three-week festival devoted entirely to his symphonic creations. Festival highlights include conductors Alan Gilbert and Bernstein-protégé Leonard Slatkin leading Bernstein’s complete symphonies, with Oscar-winner Jeremy Irons featured as the speaker in the powerful “Kaddish” symphony. — Through Nov. 14, David Geffen Hall, 10 Lincoln Center, (212) 875-5656, nyphil.org.
ISRAEL PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA
“A prodigious performer in action, increasingly willing to plumb music’s soul,” is how the Los Angeles Times described pianist Yefim Bronfman. Bronfman, accompanied by the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, performs a New York premiere of composer Amit Poznansky’s “Footnote Suite,” Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3 and Richard Strauss’ orchestral piece, “Ein Heldenleben.” — Tuesday, Nov. 7, 8 p.m., Carnegie Hall, 881 Seventh Ave., (212) 247-7800, carnegiehall.org (see story on page 34).
Singing only in Ladino and combining hints of flamenco, Turkish and Persian music with touches of pop, Israeli singer Yasmin Levy is a rare vocalist — one that the Guardian had called “impressively powerful.” A Q&A with the artist, moderated by ethnomusicologist Samuel R. Thomas, precedes the show. — Saturday, Nov. 4, 7:30 Q&A, 8 p.m. concert, Merkin Concert Hall, 129 W. 67th St., (212) 501-3330, kaufmanmusiccenter.org.
OTHER ISRAEL FESTIVAL
All screenings take place at JCC Manhattan, 334 Amsterdam Ave., (646) 505-4444. For a detailed schedule visit otherisrael.org.
A LAND WITHOUT BORDERS
Award-winning writer Nir Baram travels through the West Bank to speak with locals on both sides of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. What he learns forces him to challenge his political belief system and re-evaluate his own hopes for a peaceful resolution couched in the two-state solution. Following the screening, Baram will speak with moderator Ethan Bronner, international editor at Bloomberg News and former Middle East correspondent for The Times. — Saturday, Nov. 4, 6:45 p.m.
THE PROMISED BAND
American reality TV producer Jen Heck brings her friends, from a self-described bubble in Tel Aviv, to meet Lina, a Palestinian living in Nablus, which is off-limits to Israeli citizens. When Shlomit and Lina hit it off, they decide to form a band that would allow them to continue to meet and interact. The screening will be followed by a conversation with director Heck, actress Viki Auslender, award-winning film/TV editor Ben Frazer and Obada Shtaya, founder of the OneVoice on Campus fellowship program. — Saturday, Nov. 4, 6:45 p.m.
Despite the four years he served in an Israeli prison, his mother’s five year sentence and a brother killed by an Israeli soldier, Khaled Abu Awwad dedicated his family’s land for a shack-turned-peacemaking-venture he called The Field, where he would meet Israeli settlers. Director Mordechai Vardi, a resident of Gush Etzion, chronicles two years in the life of the endeavor, as changes transpire on both sides and as violent riots rock the region. Followed by a discussion with Vardi, Awwad and Rabbi Hanan Schlesinger. — Sunday, Nov. 5, 2 p.m.
FROM BROOKLYN TO BEIRUT
Rola Khayyat’s documentary explores the landscape of belonging for the community of Lebanese Jews in New York — along with the fragilities and complexities associated with a politicized identity. — Thursday, Nov. 9, 7 p.m., Center for Jewish History, 15 W.16 St., (212) 294-8301, cjh.org.
On a sweltering August day in 1945, Hungarian villagers prepare for the wedding of the town clerk’s son. Meanwhile, two Orthodox Jews arrive at the village train station with mysterious boxes labeled “fragrances.” The town clerk fears the men may be heirs of the village’s deported Jews and expects them to demand that their illegally acquired property, lost during the war, be returned. Variety called the film “a fresh, intelligent cinematic approach to a difficult topic that takes on a transitional time in Hungarian history with subtlety and nuance.” — Film Forum, 209 W. Houston St., filmforum.org.
THE MEYEROWITZ STORIES
Noah Baumbach’s “The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)” is a funny examination of a dysfunctional Jewish family that, as Baumbach noted in the press conference, “has replaced religion with art as a subject of worship.” Aging sculptor Harold (Dustin Hoffman), an all-but-forgotten minor talent, dominates and manipulates his children by several marriages — Danny (Adam Sandler), Matthew (Ben Stiller) and Jean (Elizabeth Marvel), each of whom feels he or she lets him down by not pursuing a life in the arts. — IFC Center, 323 Sixth Ave., ifccenter.com.
THE BOOK OF LOVE AND HATE
Set between Israel and New York, Lauren Sanders’ new espionage novel — a deeply personal reckoning of Jewish families and history — follows an American woman who sets out to track down her father. Sanders will discuss her work with playwright J.T. Rogers, whose play “Oslo” follows the back channel that led to Israel’s 1993 peace accords. — Tuesday, Nov. 7, 7-9 p.m., Bric, 647 Fulton St., Brooklyn, bricartsmedia.org.
RUBY NAMDAR’S ‘THE RUINED HOUSE’
The noted Israeli-American novelist marks the English-language release of his novel, “The Ruined House,” winner of the Sapir Prize, Israel’s highest literary award. The novel, translated by Hillel Halkin, tells the story of Andrew P. Cohen, a successful professor at NYU whose world begins to crack when he is visited by a series of strange visions of the ancient Temple in Jerusalem. — Wednesday, Nov. 8, 6-8 p.m., The Tikvah Center, 165 E. 56th St., (212) 796-1672, tikvahfund.org.
This Jewish Museum show features early drawings from the acclaimed Italian painter and sculptor Amedeo Modigliani. The drawings, which were acquired directly from the artist by Dr. Paul Alexandre, his close friend and first patron, illuminate how Modigliani’s Sephardic Jewish heritage is pivotal to understanding his output. Many of these works are being shown for the first time in the U.S. — Through Feb. 4, 2018, The Jewish Museum, 1109 Fifth Ave., (212) 423-3200, thejewishmuseum.org.
Jointly conceived by artist Colin Davidson and the Oliver Sears Gallery, “Jerusalem” is comprised of 12 large-scale portraits of individuals — Jews, Muslims, Christians, a politician, a Benedictine monk, a doctor — who live or work in the ancient, mystical, troubled city of Jerusalem. — Through Nov. 14 (open to the public on select dates), 92nd Y’s Weill Art Gallery, 1395 Lexington Ave., 92y.org.
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