The top music, theater and film events in NYC this week as curated by our arts and culture editors:
THE MACAROON KING
This quirky documentary follows “Macaroon King” Arnold Badner as he struggles to keep his Brooklyn Kosher for Passover Bakery afloat. Taking on everything from gentrification and unions to diets and hipsters, the film provides a touching and funny portrait of a Jewish family clinging to its small business as the big city keeps changing all around it. — Sunday, April 22, Anthology Film Archives, 32 Second Ave., macaroonkingfilm.com.
UWS CELEBRATES ISRAEL
Now in its sixth year, this Israel-centric festival marks the Jewish state’s 70th birthday (Yom Ha’Atzmaut falls on April 19). The daylong event features talks, concerts, films, food and kids’ activities. Headliners include Yemen Blues, a talk by former Ambassador Dennis Ross, a musical performance based on the children’s book “Ella’s Trip to Israel,” the story of Israel through song presented by Elad Kabilio’s MusicTalks and a rabbis’ forum with leading Upper West Side spiritual leaders. Led by Israeli singer Ravid Kahalani, the explosive music of Yemen Blues transplants traditional Yemenite prayers and melodies into the world of funk, soul, blues and jazz. Pre-registration for ticketed events is strongly recommended. — Sunday, April 15, beginning at 10:30 a.m. with Ross’ talk, Peter Norton Symphony Space, 2537 Broadway at 95th St., jccmanhattan.org/uwsisrael.
CYRANO OF BERGERAC
The French-born actor and baritone David Serero has tackled Shylock, Othello and Barabas from Marlowe’s “Jew of Malta,” and he played the starring role in Verdi’s biblically-based opera “Nabucco.” Now, Serero, who has a Sephardic pedigree (his great-grandfather was the chief rabbi of Fez in Morocco) and has put a Sephardic spin on his roles, stars in a new musical adaptation of “Cyrano de Bergerac.” In Edmond Rostand’s drama of the same name (based on the real 17th-century French novelist, playwright and duelist), Cyrano’s happiness is overshadowed by an over-prominent schnoz. The new work has Serero singing Sephardic and jazz standards. — Opening Sunday, April 15, 7 p.m. (with additional performances on April 17, 19 and 22), Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 294-8301, cjh.org.
High school students re-enact critical moments from the lives of local Holocaust survivors. The performance, created through a months-long collaborative process, represents the culmination of an intergenerational journey. — Sunday, April 15, 2 p.m., Museum of Jewish Heritage, 36 Battery Place, (646) 437-4202, mjhnyc.org.
“Verzet Amsterdam” (Resistance Amsterdam) dramatizes the true story of a handful of Dutch artists who risked their lives in World War II’s occupied Amsterdam to save their Jewish neighbors. Written and co-directed by Barbara Kahn. — Through April 22, Theater for the New City, 155 First Ave., (212) 254-1109, theaterforthenewcity.net.
OLD STOCK: A REFUGEE LOVE STORY
Written by Christian Barry, Hannah Moscovitch and Canadian klezmer-folk sensation Ben Caplan — who also plays the lead role — this music-theater hybrid is inspired by the real-life story of Moscovitch’s great-grandparents, both Romanian Jews, who immigrated to Canada in the early 20th century.—Through April 22, 59E59 Theaters, 59 E. 59th St., (212) 279-4200, 59e59.org. $35 and up.
This documentary teases out how Israel, despite its reputation as a militaristic and macho society, became a recognized world leader in modern dance. Part of UWS Celebrates Israel Festival. — Sunday, April 15, 4:30 p.m., Symphony Space, 2537 Broadway, (212) 864-5400, symphonyspace.org.
The subtitle of Rüdiger Suchsland’s new film — “German Cinema in the Age of Propaganda: 1933-1945” — tells much of the story of how, in the words of Jewish Week film critic George Robinson, Nazi leadership was “intoxicated by the power of cinema.” —Film Forum, 209 W. Houston St., (212) 727-8110, filmforum.org.
Set in the idyllic city of Kastoria, Greece, where Jews and Christians lived in harmony for 2,000 years, the film uses never-before-seen archival footage and interviews to chronicle the Jewish community’s birth, growth and eventual destruction at the hand of the Nazis. — Airing on PBS Thursday, April 12, 12 a.m. and 8:30 p.m.
SAVIORS ON THE SCREEN: AFTER AUSCHWITZ
“You’re free. Go home.” Most Holocaust films end with these words, but this documentary begins with them, showing what happened next. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with Rachel Jagoda, director of the American Jewish Historical Society. — Thursday, April 12, 7 p.m., Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan, 334 Amsterdam Ave., (646) 505-4444, jccmanhattan.org.
AN EVENING WITH THE BAND’S VISIT
The Broadway musical (based on the Israeli film) is the winner of four best musical awards. Composer-lyricist David Yazbek, librettist Itamar Moses, director David Cromer, producer Orin Wolf and cast members Katrina Lenk and Ari’el Stachel discuss the show with Michael Paulson, theater reporter for The Times. With special performances by cast members Lenk and Stachel. (The play continues its Broadway run at the Barrymore Theatre.) — Sunday, April 15, 8 p.m., 92nd Street Y, 1395 Lexington Ave., 92y.org.
Led by Israeli frontman and singer Ravid Kahalani, the explosive music of Yemen Blues transplants traditional Yemenite prayers and melodies into the world of funk, soul, blues and jazz. Part of the UWS Celebrates Israel Festival. — Sunday, April 15, 6:30 p.m., Symphony Space, 2537 Broadway, (212) 864-5400, symphonyspace.org.
Moshe Bonen and his band lead the audience in singing beloved Israeli songs in memory of Israel’s fallen soldiers. — Tuesday, April 17, 8 p.m., Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan, 334 Amsterdam Ave., (646) 505-4444, jccmanhattan.org.
Award-winning Israeli/Canadian singer-songwriter and activist Yael Deckelbaum, whose song “Prayer of the Mothers” was the anthem of Israel’s “Women Wage Peace” movement, celebrates Israel’s diversity at 70 in a concert with Arab-Christian singer Miriam Toukan and other Israeli musicians living in New York. Before the concert, Lab/Shul — along with local rabbis, artists, peacemakers, activists, poets and musicians — will cast a circle of ritual and prayer for peace. —Wednesday, April 18, 6:30 p.m. doors, 7:30 p.m. concert, Le Poisson Rouge, 158 Bleecker St, (212) 505-3474, lpr.com.
THREE JEWISH MOVEMENTS, ONE VOICE
To mark the unifying occasion of Israel’s 70th birthday, Orthodox, Conservative and Reform cantors perform together in an intra-faith concert. The evening features the Jewish Center’s Chaim Dovid Berson, Park Avenue Synagogue’s Azi Schwartz and Temple Emanu-El’s Mo Glazman. The performance was written and directed by Charlotte Cohn, with arrangements by producer/composer Robbie Grunwald. — Wednesday, April 18, 8 p.m., Temple Emanu-El Streicker Center, 1 E. 65th St., (212) 507-9580, emanuelskirballnyc.org.
ISLE OF KLEZBOS
The acclaimed, all-female klezmer powerhouse “tests the elasticity of the genre” (The New Yorker) with both irreverence and respect. IOK will be joined by special guest singer/songwriter Natalia Zukerman. — Sunday, April 22, 11 a.m., City Winery, 155 Varick St., (212) 608-0555, citywinery.com/newyork/tickets. $10.
ART, ARTISTS AND ACTIVISM
The husband-and-wife team of “Homeland” star Mandy Patinkin and Obie Award-winning actress Kathryn Grody join moderator Ruth Messinger in a conversation on social justice and human rights. The three traveled together to Cambodia in 2016 with the American Jewish World Service to work on human rights issues there. — Monday, April 16, 7:30 p.m., Jewish Theological Seminary, 3080 Broadway, jtsa.edu. $20.
DENNIS ROSS – ISRAEL @ 70
A former ambassador and Mideast peace negotiator who served in the administrations of both George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton, Dennis Ross will speak about where Israel stands today. Part of the UWS Celebrates Israel festivities. — Sunday, April 15, 10:30 a.m., Symphony Space, 2537 Broadway, (212) 864-5400, symphonyspace.org.
BRET STEPHENS ON ISRAEL @ 70
The Times columnist and Never Trumper Bret Stephens, who favors a muscular U.S. foreign policy, talks about Israel’s current events and what could be in store for the future. — Monday, April 16, 6 p.m., Congregation Kehilat Jeshurun, 125 E. 85th St., ujafedny.org.
WRESTLING WITH SHYLOCK
JTS’ Edna Nahshon leads a dynamic discussion about her recent book, “Wrestling with Shylock: Jewish Responses to the Merchant of Venice,” which examines the ever-expanding body of Jewish responses to Shakespeare’s most Jewishly relevant play. — Monday, April 16, 7 p.m., Center for Jewish History, 15 W. 16th St., (212) 294-8301, cjh.org.
RABBI BOTEACH & DR. OZ
TV health guru Dr. Mehmet Oz (Dr. Oz, that is, who has been criticized for relying on flimsy science) will discuss his recent trip to Israel with Rabbi Shmuley Boteach.— Wednesday, April 18, 6 p.m., Reed Smith LLP, 599 Lexington Ave. RSVP required at email@example.com or (631) 761-7061.
ECHOES OF THE HOLOCAUST
The Holocaust and the creation of the state of Israel are probably the most important historical milestones in modern Jewish history. Professor Rachel Korazim discusses how the Holocaust influenced modern Israeli literature, poetry and culture. — Wednesday, April 18, 7 p.m., 92nd Street Y, 1395 Lexington Ave., 92y.org.
Tackling the charged topic of sexual violence during the Holocaust, “Violated! Women in Holocaust and Genocide” features 47 bold works on sexual violation by 30 artists. Alongside pieces dealing with the Holocaust are some about later genocides and ethnic cleansings — in Bosnia, Darfur, Eritrea, Guatemala, Iraq, Nigeria and Rwanda. — Through May 12, Ronald Feldman Fine Arts Gallery, 31 Mercer St., (212) 226-3232, feldmangallery.com.
YOUR PLACE OR MINE
Marc Camille Chaimowicz’s first solo museum show in the U.S. brings together the artist’s cross-disciplinary works in painting, drawing, collage, sculpture, installation, furniture, lighting, ceramics, textiles and wallpaper.— Through Aug. 5, The Jewish Museum, 1109 Fifth Ave., (212) 423-3200, thejewishmuseum.org.
In 1940, when photographer Henryk Ross, who died in 1991, was confined to the Lodz Ghetto in Poland, he was put to work by the Nazi regime as a bureaucratic photographer. “Memory Unearthed: The Lodz Ghetto Photographs of Henryk Ross” presents more than 200 of his photographs, supplemented by artifacts and testimony and presented in the context of Lodz Ghetto history. — Through June 24, Museum of Jewish Heritage, 36 Battery Place, (646) 437-4202, mjhnyc.org.
SCENES FROM THE COLLECTION
The Jewish Museum has recently reopened its permanent, third-floor collection galleries in what amounts to a serious makeover. Where the old collection aimed to chronicle 4,000 years of Jewish history with a single, linear narrative, the new one is divided into seven different scenes, each revealing various ways in which history and art are shaped by context. — The Jewish Museum, 1109 Fifth Ave., (212) 423-3200, thejewishmuseum.org.
ROMANCE AND REASON
Bringing together an exceptional group of rare Islamic manuscripts, the exhibit “Romance and Reason: Islamic Transformations of the Classical Past” features 24 illustrated and illuminated manuscripts from the collections of the National Library of Israel; they testify to the fertile relationship between medieval Islam and the classical world. Organized by NYU’s Institute for the Study of the Ancient World (ISAW) in partnership with the NLI. — Through May 13, Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, 15 E. 84th St., isaw.nyu.edu/exhibitions.
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