THE ESSENCE OF YIDDISH THEATER
A mash-up of scenes, sketches, songs and oddball diversions, “The Essence” is a fast-moving theatrical introduction to Yiddish language and theater. Created by Allen Lewis Rickman, Yelena Shmulenson and Steve Sterner — the self-ascribed “younger generation of Yiddish theater veterans, i.e. under 80” — the play tells the history of both Yiddish theater and the Yiddish language itself, “from the sublime to the appalling in 83 New York Minutes.” — Wednesday, July 18, 7 p.m., YIVO Institute, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 246-6080, yivo.org.
WHEN HEROES FLY
Inspired by a bestselling novel, this dramatic Israeli TV series centers on four friends who are war veterans of a Special Forces unit. Eleven years after falling out, they must reunite for one final and deeply personal rescue mission. When they receive news that Yaeli, a former lover of one of the friends and sister of another — long believed to be dead — may still be alive, the four embark on a mission to find her deep in the Colombian jungle. Followed by a Q&A with the show’s star, actor/singer Ninet Tayeb. — Thursday, July 19, 7-9 p.m., Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan, 334 Amsterdam Ave., (646) 505-4444. jccmanhattan.org.
In conjunction with the exhibit “Chaim Soutine: Flesh,” The Jewish Museum and Bang On A Can — the forward-thinking, multifaceted contemporary classical music organization — present a concert by Brooklyn-based composer, pianist and vocalist Judith Berkson. Mirroring Soutine’s connection to images of shtetl life, Berkson, herself a cantor, blends the sounds of Eastern European chazonos (cantorial) chants with the music of renowned 20th-century Cantor Yossele Rosenblatt, Franz Schubert, electronic experimentation and analog keyboard, creating a unique sound. The New York Times described her solo album, “Oylam” (ECM Records) as “Standards and Schubert and liturgical music, swing and chilly silences, a beautiful Satie-like piece to open and close the record.” — Thursday, July 19, 7:30 p.m., Scheuer Auditorium at The Jewish Museum, 1109 Fifth Avenue, thejewishmuseum.org.
THE FIFTH PARAGRAPH
In this two-part reading about immigration, Russian-speaking Jewish immigrants and their children will chronicle their own stories about relocating; a multimedia theatrical reading of other nonfiction immigration stories will follow. Created by Olia Toporovsky Gomez-Delgado, with original live music by Abraham Gomez-Delgado. — Tuesday, July 17, 7-9 p.m., Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan, 334 Amsterdam Ave., (646) 505-4444, jccmanhattan.org.
TEVYE SERVED RAW
Find out what happens to the beloved characters in “Fiddler on the Roof” after the musical ends, with “Tevye Served Raw.” The show includes Sholem Aleichem’s account of what happened (“the Tevye tales they left out of the musical”), adaptations of his Tevye stories, scenes from his long-unseen Yiddish stage version and three of his newly adapted stories (“Strange Jews on a Train,” “The Yiddish Sisyphus” and “A Stepmother’s Trash-Talk”). — Opening night on Tuesday July 17, through Aug. 14, Playroom Theatre, 151 W. 46th St., tevyeservedraw.com and (800) 838-3006. $38.
“FIDDLER ON THE ROOF” IN YIDDISH
Directed by Oscar- and Tony Award-winner Joel Grey, a rich Yiddish translation by the late Shraga Friedman adds new depth and dimension to the iconic musical. Presented by National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene at the Museum of Jewish Heritage. — Through Aug. 6, Museum of Jewish Heritage, 36 Battery Place, (866) 811-4111, mjhnyc.org.
Joshua Harmon (“Bad Jews,” “Admissions”) is back with “Skintight,” starring Idina Menzel as Jodi Isaac, who turns to her father, a famous fashion designer, for support after her ex-husband’s engagement to a younger woman. Dad, it turns out, is wrapped up in his Greenwich Village townhouse with a 20-something guy who’s probably gay and an adult film star. Billed as a “scorching story of beauty, youth and sex.”— Through Aug. 26, Laura Pels Theater, 111 W. 46th St., roundabouttheatre.org. $119.
VITALY: AN EVENING OF WONDERS
Israel-raised magician Vitaly Beckman has wowed audiences with innovative illusions, and he is now making his NYC debut. Recommended for ages 8 and up. — Through Sept. 30, Westside Theatre, 407 W. 43rd St. (9th-10th avenues), telecharge.com. $89.
BATSHEVA – THE YOUNG ENSEMBLE
The youth troupe of the acclaimed Batsheva company comes to The Joyce to perform “Naharin’s Virus,” the Bessie Award-winning 2002 dance by the company’s leader, Ohad Naharin. An exploration into the boundaries of language, the piece is set to a soundtrack blending Palestinian folk music, classical music and recorded text from Peter Handke’s play “Offending the Audience.” — Through Sunday, July 22, The Joyce Theater, 175 Eighth Ave., (212) 242-0800, joyce.org.
In this 1988 Joan Micklin Silver classic, unmarried Upper West Sider Isabelle “Izzy” Grossman (Amy Irving) spends her time going from her tiny apartment to that of her grandmother (Yiddish actress Reizel Bozyk in her only film) on the Lower East Side. While grandma plots to find her a romantic match, Izzy is courted by a married, worldly author, Anton (Jeroen Krabbe), yet can’t seem to shake the down-to-earth appeal of Sam (Peter Riegert), a pickle vendor. — Friday, July 13, 4:50 p.m. and Wednesday, July 18, 6:20 p.m., Quad Cinema, 34 W. 13th St., (212) 255-2243, quadcinema.com.
BYE BYE GERMANY
A postwar comedy with chutzpah. Frankfurt, 1946. David Bermann and his friends have escaped the Nazi regime and are now dreaming of leaving for America. They go into business and it flourishes, but Bermann’s past catches up with him. Co-presented with New Plaza Cinema. — Sunday, July 15, 2, 4:30 and 7 p.m., Marlene Meyerson JCC, 334 Amsterdam Ave., (646) 505-4444. jccmanhattan.org.
Three Palestinian women living in an apartment in Tel Aviv try to find a balance between traditional and modern culture. Co-presented with New Plaza Cinema. — Monday, July 23, 7 p.m. and Tuesday, July 24, 4:30 p.m. Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan, 334 Amsterdam Ave., (646) 505-4444, jccmanhattan.org.
ITAI KRISS AND TELAVANA
Itai Kriss, “one of the most exciting new flutist-composers” on the NYC jazz scene (Jazzwax), fuses jazz with Latin and Middle Eastern sounds. Comprised of equal parts Cubans and Israelis, his Telavana ensemble plays a mix of timba, soul, North African and Israeli music that bridges the Middle East and the Caribbean. — Friday, July 20, 7:30-10 p.m., Smalls Jazz Club, 183 W. 10th St., (646) 476-4346, smallslive.com.
THE BLUE DAHLIA
Brooklyn-born but a nomad at heart, Dahlia Dumont traveled the world from an early age, absorbing cultural and musical influences on her path. Her project, dubbed “The Blue Dahlia,” mixes Tex-Mex accordion with klezmer violin, old-time French swing, reggae and ska to create a new musical whole. Think of her as the klezmer Piaf. — Saturday, July 14, 5 p.m., Rockwood Music Hall, 196 Allen St., (212) 477-4155, rockwoodmusichall.com.
THE MAKING OF “FIDDLER ON THE ROOF”
Sheldon Harnick, Pulitzer Prize- and Tony Award-winning lyricist of “Fiddler on the Roof,” and Alisa Solomon, author of “Wonder of Wonders: A Cultural History of Fiddler on the Roof,” explore the story’s rich history. — Wednesday, July 18, 6:30 p.m., Museum of Jewish Heritage, 36 Battery Place, (646) 437-4202, mjhnyc.org.
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