YOTAM BEN-OR QUARTET
Yotam Ben-Or, an Israeli-American harmonica player and composer who hit the jazz scene here in 2014, is traversing relatively uncharted waters (the great Toots Thielemans, aside) by placing the mouth harp front and center in his jazz quartet — with piano, bass and drums all playing second fiddle, so to speak. Inspired by Israeli folk songs and rooted in the jazz idiom, Ben Or’s compositions are highly melodic and often wistful, an emotion his harmonica is particularly suited for. With Abriel Chakarji on piano, Alon Near on bass and Noam Israeli on drums. — Tuesday, Nov. 20, 11 p.m., Rockwood Music Hall, 196 Allen St., (212) 477-4155, rockwoodmusichall.com.
Just weeks after Kristallnacht (Nov. 9-10, 1938), the first group of Jewish refugee children arrived in the United Kingdom. The Leo Baeck Institute and the Yeshiva University Museum launch an exhibition exploring this remarkable effort, one that saved some 10,000 children, many of whom never saw their parents again. — Opens Monday, Nov. 26, 6 p.m., Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (800) 838-3006, cjh.org.
Some filmmakers change cinema; others change consciousness. Celebrating the work of iconic filmmaker Claude Lanzmann, Quad Cinema presents a retrospective of his works. Alongside daily screenings of his newly released “Shoah: Four Sisters,” a four-part series comprised of interviews with women from four different areas of Eastern Europe, the retrospective includes “Israel, Why,” Lanzmann’s first documentary, which carries insights into what it meant to be Israeli during the country’s first 25 years of statehood (Friday, Nov. 16, 6:35 p.m.); “The Last of the Unjust,” a film built around the recollections of Benjamin Murmelstein, a rabbi in Czechoslovakia’s Theresienstadt ghetto concentration camp, who managed to effect escapes while spending years in daily contact with Adolf Eichmann (Monday, Nov. 19, 6:35 p.m.); and “Tsahal,” Lanzmann’s in-depth examination of the Israel Defense Forces and what the army demonstrates about Israel’s national identity (Sunday, Nov. 18, 1 p.m.). —Through Nov. 20, Quad Cinema, 34 W. 13th St., (212) 255-2243, quadcinema.com.
The great 19th-century Jewish female tragedian returns to the stage in Theresa Rebeck’s new play, in which the scenery-chewing actress takes on the role of the Danish prince. Janet McTeer, who won a Tony playing Nora in “A Doll House,” stars. — American Airlines Theatre, 227 W. 42nd St., (212) 719-1300, roundabouttheatre.org. $49-$109.
GLORIA: A LIFE
Five decades after Gloria Steinem began raising her voice for equality and championing those of others, her vision is as urgent as ever. The first act of this new show chronicles Steinem’s story, the second centers on the making of the play and the third is a Talking Circle where audience members get their say. — Through January 2019, The Daryl Roth Theatre, 101 E. 15th St., (800) 745-3000, gloriatheplay.com.
THE OPEN GATE
Theater for the New City brings back David Willinger’s musical adaptation of I.B. Singer’s novel, “The Manor,” about a wealthy Jewish businessman and his four daughters. — Theater for the New City, 155 First Ave., (212) 868-4444, smarttix.com.
THE OTHER JOSH COHEN
The night before Valentine’s Day, Josh Cohen — a broke and broken-hearted lovable loser — comes home to find his New York apartment has been broken into and wiped clean, except for one Neil Diamond CD. But as it turns out, for Josh losing everything is just the beginning. — Westside Theatre, 407 W. 43rd St., telecharge.com.
HARVEY FIERSTEIN’S TORCH SONG
Condensed to 2 ½ hours, Harvey Fierstein’s original four-hour, semi-autobiographical 1982 “Torch Song” follows the ups and downs of Arnold Beckoff, a Jewish gay drag queen and torch singer. This Broadway revival, directed by Moisés Kaufman and starring Michael Urie as Arnold and Tony-winner Mercedes Ruehl as his mom, had a hit run Off Broadway at Second Stage Theater. — Hayes Theater, 240 W. 44th St., (212) 239-6200, torchsongbroadway.com.
FIDDLER 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, and it has gotten raves. Presented by National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene. — Through Dec. 30, Museum of Jewish Heritage, 36 Battery Place, (866) 811-4111, mjhnyc.org.
ARI HOENIG TRIO
Veteran drummer and composer Ari Hoenig plays a flexible, broad-minded brand of jazz, incorporating influences from hardcore punk and metal, hip-hop, acid jazz and electronica. — Monday, Nov. 26, 7:30 p.m., Smalls Jazz Club, 183 W. 10th St., (646) 476-4346, smallslive.com.
JEWS AND MUSIC IN POLISH CITIES
This concert presents music of Polish Jews that is little known to American audiences — choral pieces from 19th-century progressive congregations, compositions associated with Jewish music societies and avant-garde works by Jewish composers. — Sunday, Nov. 18, 7 p.m., Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 294-8301, cjh.org.
Israeli-born, New York-based singer/songwriter and guitarist Shahar Mintz plays folky, acoustic excerpts from his first solo album, “Know Yourself.” — Tuesday, Nov. 20, 11 p.m., Rockwood Music Hall, 196 Allen St., rockwoodmusichall.com.
In June 1943, Germany infamously declared Berlin “judenfrei” — free of Jews. But there were still 7,000 Jews living in hiding in the Nazi capital, protected by courageous Berliners. Only 1,700 lived to liberation. This film tells the stories of four survivors. — Tuesday, Nov. 27, 7 p.m., Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan, 334 Amsterdam Ave., (646) 505-4444, jccmanhattan.org.
SHOAH: FOUR SISTERS, PARTS 3-4
In the wake of his landmark 1985 documentary, “Shoah,” filmmaker Claude Lanzmann made several films that could be considered its satellites, comprised of interviews conducted in the 1970s that did not make it into the final cut. In the last years of his life, Lanzmann created “Four Sisters,” a four-part series about four women from four different areas of Eastern Europe. Survivors of unimaginable Nazi horrors, they tell their individual stories and become crucial witnesses to the barbarism they experienced. Screening parts three and four, “Noah’s Ark” and “Baluty.” — Friday, Nov. 16, 1:30 p.m., Symphony Space, 2537 Broadway, (212) 864-5400, symphonyspace.org.
MOVIE NIGHT WITH THE REAGANS
Mark Weinberg, former special adviser and press secretary to President Ronald Reagan, shares an intimate, behind-the-scenes look inside the Reagan presidency — as told through the movies they watched together every week at Camp David. — Friday, Nov. 16, noon, 92nd Street Y, 1395 Lexington Ave., 92y.org.
THE AFTERLIVES OF SHABBATAI ZVI
This lecture by David Biale will examine the way 19th- and 20th-century authors remembered the Sabbatian movement, the great heretical explosion in the Jewish world of the 17th and 18th centuries. — Sunday, Nov. 18, 1 p.m., Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 294-8301, cjh.org.
HOW BROADWAY BECAME A JEWISH ENCLAVE
John Kenrick, adjunct faculty member at NYU and former personal assistant to six Tony winners, discusses the Jewish dominance of the Great White Way. — Monday, Nov. 19, 1-2:30 p.m., Temple Emanu-El Streicker Center, 1 E. 65th St., (212) 507-9580, emanuelstreickernyc.org
BECAUSE JEWISH PRESENTS SCOTT ROGOWSKY
As part of their “Friday Night Jam Series,” Rabbi Daniel Brenner and Relix’s Mike Greenhaus explore spirituality, Judaism and musical meditation with comedian Scott Rogowsky, host of the mobile app and trivia game HQ Trivia. — Friday, Nov. 16, 7 p.m., Rockwood Music Hall Stage 3, 185 Orchard St., becausejewish.com/jam/.
OPEN YOUR HAND
Fifteen years into a successful career as a college professor, Ilana Blumberg encountered a crisis in the classroom that sent her back to the most basic questions about education and prompted a life-changing journey, ultimately taking her from East Lansing, Mich., to Tel Aviv. With Professor Ari Goldman, Blumberg discusses her insights regarding how to remain true to a community of origin while being a national and global citizen. — Monday, Nov. 19, noon, Institute for Israel and Jewish Studies, Columbia University, 1140 Amsterdam Ave., iijs.columbia.edu.
THE EXTRAORDINARY CASE OF RABBI ZALMAN SCHNEERSON
Harriet Jackson, professor of history and French studies at NYU, will discuss the relief, rescue and resistance activities of Lubavitch Rabbi Zalman Schneerson and the Association des Israélites Pratiquants (AIP) in Vichy France, 1940-1944. — Monday, Nov. 19, 6:30 p.m., YIVO Institute, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 246-6080, yivo.org.
MARTHA ROSLER: IRRESPECTIVE
Brooklyn yeshiva-educated Martha Rosler is considered one of the strongest and most resolute artistic voices of her generation. (She has said that her Jewish education inspired her politics.) She skillfully employs diverse materials to address pressing matters of her time, including war, gender roles, gentrification, inequality and labor. From her feminist photomontages of the 1960s and ’70s to her large-scale installations, Rosler’s work reflects and enduring and passionate vision. — Through March 3, 2019, The Jewish Museum, 1109 Fifth Ave. (at 92nd St.), (212) 423-3200, thejm.org.
Latin American artistry is rich with Sephardi and Crypto-Jewish allusions and symbols. “Nosotros: Connecting the Latino and Jewish Communities,” now in its second edition, is a group show composed of pieces by Latino artists celebrating the shared history and culture of Jewish and Latino communities. — Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 294-8301, cjh.org.
CHAGALL, LISSITZKY, MALEVICH
Kicking off the fall season and exploring a little-known chapter in the history of modernity and the Russian avant-garde, The Jewish Museum’s new exhibit focuses on the People’s Art School (1918-1922), founded by Marc Chagall in his native city of Vitebsk (present-day Belarus), featuring the works of three iconic figures — Marc Chagall, El Lissitzky and Kazimir Malevich — as well as works by lesser-known students and teachers of the Vitebsk school. — Through Jan. 6, 2019, The Jewish Museum, 1109 Fifth Ave. (at 92nd St.), (212) 423-3200, thejm.org.
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