NYC Jewish-y Events, May 17-26
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NYC Jewish-y Events, May 17-26

Your weekly guide to educational, cultural and quirky events in New York City, with a Jewish bent.

Former Batsheva dancer Bobbi Jene Smith’s choreography is featured in “Lost Mountain.”
Former Batsheva dancer Bobbi Jene Smith’s choreography is featured in “Lost Mountain.”

Editor’s Picks:

LOST MOUNTAIN
Composed of a series of vignettes with live music, this multimedia piece by former Batsheva dancer Bobbi Jene Smith brings together 12 remarkable artists from Israel and beyond. Headliners include Israeli folk-rock singer-songwriter Asaf Avidan, whose “high voice can be sweetly androgynous but can also rise to a cutting, rasping, bluesy howl” (The Times); cellist Coleman Itzkoff, whom The New Yorker hails for his “flawless technique and keen musicality”; Israeli dancer and Gaga teacher Ariel Freedman; cross-genre violinist Keir Gogwil and more. The piece, according to advance billing, “draws inspiration from the catastrophic and sublime machinations of geological forces.” — Thursday-Sunday, May 16-19, Ellen Stewart Theatre, 66 E. Fourth St., lamama.org/lost_mountain/.

LABALIVE
In a meditation on the theme of life and death, Labalive, the 14th Street Y’s Jewish fellowship program, presents an exhibit and two genre-defying performances inspired by Jewish texts. In “En Garde,” actor/playwright Richard Saudek’s off-beat one-man show, a lone clown discovers a dead body and unsuccessfully attempts to observe “Shmearah” — the ritual of guarding the body so that its soul cannot escape. In “Necrophoresis,” cross-disciplinary theater artist and director Dmitri Barcomi explores Anna Freud’s legacy through music, dance and dialogue. In the 14th Street Gallery, artist Jessica Tamar Deutsch presents whimsical and heartfelt drawings and writings from the ongoing diary of a 20-something Jewess. — Thursday, May 23, 7 p.m., The Theatre at the 14th Street Y, 344 E. 14th St., (212) 780-0800, 14streety.org.

GUY MINTUS TRIO – CONNECTING THE DOTS

Pianist Guy Mintus performs May 19 at National Sawdust.

On his new album, Israeli-American pianist and composer Guy Mintus and his trio connect the dots, so to speak, of Mintus’ ethnic and musical heritage. Flowing through Horace Silver-style hard bop to Israeli-Yemenite a la Zohar Argov (Israel’s “King of Mizrahi Music” from the ’80s), with riffs from Barbra Streisand and Lebanese folk icon Fairouz, the CD is a “majestic, darkly eclectic album,” according to New York Music Daily. — Sunday, May 19, 7 p.m., National Sawdust, 80 North Sixth St., Brooklyn, (646) 779-8455, nationalsawdust.org.

Theater

ISRAEL STORY LIVE: THE WALL
Combining radio-style storytelling with in-the-flesh actors, the popular Israeli podcast/radio show “Israel Story” returns to New York for a broadcast before a live audience. This installment features stories about a topic that seems to have become a potent symbol of our times: walls, from the Western one to the one surrounding the West Bank. All events to be followed by a reception with the cast. — Sunday-Monday, May 19-20, 7 p.m., Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan, 334 Amsterdam Ave., (646) 505-4444, jccmanhattan.org.

NABUCCO
Made famous by its chorus “Va, pensiero” — or in English, the “Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves” — Verdi’s opera “Nabucco” retells the story of Jewish exiles in Babylon after the loss of the First Temple in Jerusalem. Building on biblical accounts of the Babylonian exile, “Nabucco” (Nebuchadnezzar) combines political and love intrigues with some of the best-known songs in the history of opera. Starring baritone David Serero. — On various dates through Sunday, June 2, Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 294-8301, cjh.org.

ALL MY SONS
Arthur Miller’s searing play about a manufacturer who knowingly supplies shoddy parts for WWII airplanes. Starring Annette Bening and Tracy Letts. — Through June 23, Roundabout’s American Airlines Theatre, (212) 719-1300, roundabouttheatre.org.

YIDDISH FIDDLER, OFF BROADWAY
“Fiddler” in Yiddish, the unexpected runaway hit that both delighted and choked up audiences at the Museum of Jewish History, is now Off-Broadway. Directed by the acclaimed Joel Grey, a rich Yiddish translation by the late Shraga Friedman adds new depth to the iconic musical. With English and Russian supertitles. — Stage 42, 422 W. 42nd St., (212) 239-6200, telecharge.com.   

Music

FRANK LONDON, DEEP SINGH, THE RIBS & BRISKET REVUE
Three masters of fusion — Frank London, Deep Singh and Paul Shapiro — cook up an elaborate musical gumbo of Indian, Cuban, Latin and Yiddish music and downtown jazz, transforming Irving Fields’ classic 1959 LP “Bagels & Bongos” into a Yiddish-infused Punjabi bhangra party.— Saturday, May 18, 9 p.m., City Winery, 155 Varick St., (212) 608-0555, citywinery.com/newyork/tickets.

SECULAR SACRED MUSIC
This concert features two choral masterworks inspired by the works of Jewish Abstract Expressionist painter Mark Rothko: Morton Feldman’s “Rothko’s Chapel” and David Lang’s “Little March Girl Passion,” both performed by the young artists of the Os Ensemble, led by Raquel Acevedo-Klein. Also on tap: a performance of a new secular sacred work by composer Adam Roberts, commissioned for the occasion. A panel discussion on the topic of secular sacred art, with composers Lang and Adam Roberts, as well as Kate Rothko Prizel and Christopher Rothko, follows. — Sunday, May 19, 7 p.m., Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 294-8301, cjh.org.

TAMAR EISENMAN

The Israeli-American singer-songwriter and guitarist — “a musical heavyweight … whose performance borders on perfection,” says The Jerusalem Post — sings her signature fusion of rock, pop, Israeli folk and indie music. — Sunday, May 19, 8 p.m., City Winery, 155 Varick St., (212) 608-0555, citywinery.com.

Talk

LEGACIES OF VIOLENCE
Commemorating the centennial of the 1919 wave of anti-Jewish violence unleashed by the Russian Civil War, a group of distinguished scholars will discuss the pogroms through the lenses of the specific geopolitical context where the violence erupted, as well as in a comparative framework in relation to anti-black violence. — Sunday, May 19, 10 a.m.-6:30 p.m., Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 294-8301, cjh.org.

REFUGEE CRISES, FROM THE KINDERTRANSPORT TO TODAY
HIAS CEO Mark Hetfield and Alex Aleinikoff, the former UN deputy high commissioner for refugees, discuss the history of popular opposition to refugees and especially how it has impacted children, from the Kindertransport to the Trump administration’s child separation policy. NPR’s Deborah Amos moderates. — Tuesday, May 21, 6:30 p.m., Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 294-8301, cjh.org.

IN THE BEGINNING WAS DESIRE
With her innovative blend of biblical narrative and Talmud with secular literature on philosophy and psychology, renowned speaker and author Avivah Zornberg breathes new life into the Adam and Eve story. Her remarks will be followed by a screening of “In the Beginning Was Desire,” a film based on Zornberg’s unique perspective, made by award-winning filmmaker David Grubin, with visuals conceived and created by Naomie Kremer. — Wednesday, May 29, 6:30 p.m., Temple Emanu-El Streicker Center, 1 E. 65th St., (212) 507-9580, emanuelstreickernyc.org.

Exhibitions

AUSCHWITZ
The most comprehensive exhibition dedicated to the history of Auschwitz to date, this groundbreaking presentation brings together more than 700 original objects and 400 photographs, from over 20 institutions and museums around the world, to explore the history of Auschwitz and its role in the Holocaust. — Through Jan. 3, 2020, Museum of Jewish Heritage, 36 Battery Place, (646) 437-4202, mjhnyc.org.

CITY OF WORKERS, CITY OF STRUGGLE: HOW LABOR MOVEMENTS CHANGED NEW YORK
From Samuel Gompers to A. Philip Randolph, this new show traces the social, political and economic story of labor through rare documents, artifacts and footage, and considers the future of labor in the city. Jewish contributions to the movement figure heavily. — Museum of the City of New York, 1220 Fifth Ave. (at 103rd St.), mcny.org. Through Jan. 5, 2020.

SOVIET CHILDHOOD
Kiev native Zoya Cherkassky immigrated to Israel in 1991. Her highly figurative paintings — which are included in the permanent collections of The Jewish Museums of New York, Berlin and Vienna, as well as the Israel Museum in Jerusalem — chronicle a childhood between two cultures. —Through June 15, Fort Gansevoort, 5 Ninth Ave., fortgansevoort.com/upcomingexhibition.

LEONARD COHEN: A CRACK IN EVERYTHING
This show celebrates the singer-songwriter’s powerful legacy through mixed-media works, including a video projection showcasing Cohen’s own drawings and a multimedia gallery where visitors can hear Cohen’s songs covered by other musicians. —Through Sept. 8, The Jewish Museum, 1109 Fifth Ave., (212) 423-3200, thejewishmuseum.org.

To publish events, submit them to jewishweekcalendar@gmail.com two weeks or more in advance. We cannot guarantee inclusion due to space limitations. Since scheduling changes may occur, we recommend contacting the venue before heading out to an event.

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