Artist talk. Deborah Miller discusses “Cradle of Wet and Burning,” her paintings exploring Kabbalah. At University Arts and Consciousness Gallery, 2956 San Pablo Ave., Berkeley. 4 p.m. Free. http://www.jfku.edu/gallery.
“An American Experience: Growing Up Jewish in America.” Exhibit displays heritage of residents and family members of the Reutlinger Community for Jewish Living. Through July 29. At the Jewish Heritage Museum, 4000 Camino Tassajara, Danville. http://www.rcjl.org.
“California Dreaming.” Multimedia exhibit exploring Jewish life in the Bay Area from Gold Rush to present. Through Oct. 16. “Do Not Destroy: Trees, Art, and Jewish Thought.” Tu B’Shevat–themed exhibit that explores tree design, purpose and Jewish thought. Through Sept. 9. “Stanley Saitowitz: Judaica.” New perspectives from the S.F.-based architect. Through Oct. 16. At Contemporary Jewish Museum, 736 Mission St., S.F. http://www.thecjm.org.
“Dissolving Localities.” Multimedia exhibit by Israeli musician Emmanuel Witzthum connecting Berkeley to Jerusalem. Through July 3. At Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life, 2121 Allston Way, Berkeley. http://www.magnes.org.
“Interpreting the Interior.” Exhibit on Etgar Keret’s Israeli film “Jellyfish” and short story collections and graphic novels. Through April 29. At BJE Jewish Community Library, 1835 Ellis St., S.F. http://www.bjesf.org/adults_events.htm.
“Treasures from the Gershwin Archive.” Exhibit of memorabilia from the trust of Ira and Leonore Gershwin, including music covers, personal photographs and sketches. Through June 15. At JCC of San Francisco, 3200 California St., S.F. Free. http://www.jccsf.org.
Dance like there’s a tomorrow
During Passover, we remember our journey to freedom. Now we are free, and it’s time to dance. Join the Tribal Blues Band, a nine-piece power blues and funk group, and the Peatot, a five-piece band that plays Israeli music from the last four decades, in a “Post Passover Celebration.”
8 p.m. Saturday, April 21 at the Red Devil Lounge, 1695 Polk St., S.F. $20-$25. http://www.reddevillounge.com
“The Man That Got Away: Ira After George.” Musical revue on the life of Ira Gershwin after the death of his brother George. At JCC of San Francisco, 3200 California St., S.F. 8 p.m. $60-$75. Also April 14 at 8 p.m. and April 15 at 2 p.m. In conjunction with “Treasures from the Gershwin Archive.” http://www.jccsf.org.
“Faiths in Harmony.” Jewish folk ensemble Vocolot performs with Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choirs. At Islamic Cultural Center, 1433 Madison St., Oakland. 7:30 p.m. Free. http://www.oigc.org.
The Red Hot Chachkas. Bay Area klezmer band performs. At Oshman Family JCC, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto. 7 p.m. $25. http://www.paloaltojcc.org.
“Wake Up!” Acoustic guitar and piano player Alison Faith Levy performs Sippy Cups classics and traditional Jewish songs for kids. At BJE Jewish Community Library, 1835 Ellis St., S.F. 10:30 a.m. Free. http://www.bjesf.org.
Firebird Dance Theatre. Contemporary folk dance troupe performs “The Best of 20,” a benefit for the Oshman Family JCC. At the JCC, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto. 5 p.m. $15-$20. http://www.paloaltojcc.org.
Bruce Vilanch. Performance by the Jewish comedian and writer known for his spot on “Hollywood Squares” and his starring role in “Hairspray, the Musical.” At JCC of San Francisco, 3200 California St., S.F. 8 p.m. $40-$55. http://www.jccsf.org.
“A Bright Room Called Day.” World War II drama by Tony Kushner about artists in 1930s Berlin evading the Nazis. Through April 22. At Custom Made Theatre Co., 1620 Gough St., S.F. Times vary. $25-$32. http://www.custommade.org.
“Red.” Play about painter Mark Rothko written by Oscar-nominated author John Logan. Through May 12. At Berkeley Repertory Theater, 2025 Addison St, Berkeley. Times vary. http://www.berkeleyrep.org.
film & video
photo/courtesy of jewish federation of the east bay
Not your everyday heroes
During the Holocaust, diplomats from around the world — including Germany and Japan — risked their lives to save tens of thousands of Jews. Many of them have received little attention, but now an award-winning documentary, “The Rescuers,” uncovers the story of 13 of these heroic diplomats. Sir Martin Gilbert, the 20th century and Holocaust historian, and Stephanie Nyombayire, a young anti-genocide activist who lost 100 members of her family in the Rwandan genocide of the 1990s, travel to 15 countries to retrace the past and draw lessons for the future.
7 p.m. Thursday, April 19 at the Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life, 2121 Allston Way, Berkeley. Free. http://www.jfed.org
“Got Balz?” Screening of documentary-in-progress on Mica Jarmel-Schneider of San Francisco, who collected and delivered baseball equipment to children in Cuba for his bar mitzvah project. With Cuban dance and food. At Sports Basement, 1590 Bryant St., S.F. 4 p.m. Free. http://www.facebook.com/gotbalz.
“Menachem and Fred.” Documentary on the reunion of two German Jewish brothers who separated after the Holocaust. At Contemporary Jewish Museum, 736 Mission St., S.F. 6 p.m. Included with museum admission. http://www.thecjm.org.
Monterey Jewish Film Festival. Opens with “There Was Once” and Yom HaShoah reception at 6:30 p.m. (See Yom HaShoah listings, 8a). Also “Precious Life,” April 20 at 8:15 p.m., “Sixty-Six,” April 21 at 7 p.m., “Crime After Crime,” April 22 at 4 p.m., “Live and Become,” April 24 at 7 p.m., and “An Article of Hope,” April 26 at 7:15 p.m. At Congregation Beth Israel, 5716 Carmel Valley Road, Carmel. 6:30 p.m. $5. http://www.carmelbethisrael.org.
“The Syrian Bride.” Drama about a Golan Heights woman who must marry a man in Syria and lose the diplomatic status she needs to return home. Discussion to follow screening. At Congregation Beth Israel Judea, 625 Brotherhood Way, S.F. 7 p.m. Free. http://www.bij.org.
“Mosaic.” Interview program hosted by Rabbi Eric Weiss. 5 a.m. KPIX Channel 5.
“Our Summer in Tehran.” Screening and discussion with Jewish director Justine Shapiro on her documentary about living in Iran with her son. At City College of San Francisco, Cloud Hall, 60 Phelan Ave., S.F. 7 p.m. Free. (415) 239-3580.
“Freilach.” Jewish music and cultural radio show for the Russian River area. KGGV 95.1 FM. 8 p.m. http://www.kggv.blogspot.com.
lectures & workshops
Architecture of memory
How are newly built Holocaust museums changing the meaning and memory of the Holocaust? New York Times cultural critic Edward Rothstein and USC Shoah Foundation Institute executive director Stephen Smith will discuss the architecture and contents of a new generation of Holocaust museums, focusing on Europe.
7 p.m. Wednesday, April 18 at JCC of San Francisco, 3200 California St., S.F. Free, but reservations required. http://www.jccsf.org
Peter Beinart. Author and professor discusses his book “The Crisis of Zionism.” At JCC of San Francisco, 3200 California St., S.F. 7 p.m. $10-$20. http://www.jccsf.org.
“Examining Etgar Keret.” Hebrew translator and Jewish Community High School of the Bay teacher Merav Rozenblum leads a discussion about the Israeli artist, author and subject of the ongoing exhibit “Interpreting the Interior.” At BJE Jewish Community Library, 1835 Ellis St., S.F. 7 p.m. Free. http://www.bjesf.org/events.htm.
“A Global View of Investing in Israel.” Investment executives discuss the opportunities and risks of investing in Israel. At Oshman Family JCC, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto. 6 p.m. $25-$60. http://www.paloaltojcc.org.
“Identity Museums and the Jewish Question.” Talk by New York Times cultural critic Edward Rothstein. At Stanford University, Building 200, 450 Serra Mall, Stanford. 12 p.m. Free. http://www.stanford.edu/dept/jewishstudies.
Book talk by Jay Michaelson. Author discusses “God vs. Gay? The Religious Case for Equality.” At Congregation Sha’ar Zahav, 290 Dolores St., S.F. 6 p.m. Free. http://www.shaarzahav.org.
Israel education and advocacy training workshop. To help prepare teens for life as Jewish college students. Sponsored by StandWithUs and Jerusalem Online University. At Beth Jacob Congregation, 3778 Park Blvd., Oakland. 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. $18 per family. http://www.standwithus.com.
B’nai B’rith bagel brunch. With Bill Broder, author of “Taking Care of Cleo,” a novel about two young Jewish women in Prohibition-era Detroit. At Afikomen Judaica, 3042 Claremont Ave., Berkeley. 10:30 a.m. $5, students free. (510) 655-1977.
“A Jew’s Best Friend?” Phillip Ackerman-Lieberman, co-editor of “A Jew’s Best Friend? The Image of the Dog Throughout Jewish History,” will discuss the contradictory attitudes about the relationship between Jews and dogs. At BJE Jewish Community Library, 1835 Ellis St., S.F. 7 p.m. Free. http://www.bjesf.org.
Michael Walzer. Stanford political philosopher discusses his book “Exodus and Revolution,” which addresses the Exodus story as a model of social transformation. Aaron Roland Endowed Lecture, co-sponsored by the Oshman Family JCC. At Stanford University, Building 200, 450 Serra Mall. 7:30 p.m. Free. http://www.paloaltojcc.org.
“Scripture, Tradition, and the Problem of Incommensurability in Rabbinic and Early Christian Sources.” Talk by Azzan Yadin, professor of Jewish Studies at Rutgers University and an expert on biblical interpretation and origins of Midrash. At Graduate Theological Union, 2400 Ridge Road, Berkeley. 5 p.m. Free. http://www.gtu.edu.
Book talk by Bengt Jangfeldt. Author discusses his forthcoming “Raoul Wallenberg: A Biography” about the Swedish diplomat who rescued tens of thousands of Jews in Nazi-occupied Hungary. At Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life, 2121 Allston Way, Berkeley. 4 p.m. Free. http://www.magnes.org.
Book talk by Avivah Zornberg. Biblical scholar discusses “Becoming Ruth,” her novel about a character seeking to understand religious and cultural traditions. At Addison-Penzak JCC, 14855 Oka Road, Los Gatos. 7:30 p.m. $5-$7. http://www.siliconvalleyjcc.org.
benefits & social events
A lyrical ‘Oracle’
During the Ottoman Empire’s steep decline, a very unlikely hero steps in to save Sultan Abdulhamid II’s legacy and change history: an 8-year-old Jewish girl. This is the premise of East Bay author Michael David Lukas’ historical novel “The Oracle of Stamboul,” described by reviewers as “evocative” and “beguiling.” Lukas, who teaches creative writing to third- and fourth-graders in Oakland, will be at the Addison-Penzak JCC to shmooze and discuss his novel.
7 p.m. Tuesday, April 17 at Addison-Penzak JCC, 14855 Oka Road, Los Gatos. Free. http://www.svjcc.org
Schmooze. EastBayJews hosts an evening at a local watering hole. At Mua Bar and Restaurant, 2442a Webster St., Oakland. 6 p.m. $8-$10 cover. http://www.eastbayjews.org.
“A Walk Amongst Trees.” Hike in San Francisco’s Presidio with Bay Area Hazon director Deborah Newbrun, author of “Spirit in Nature.” Presented by Contemporary Jewish Museum. Starting location available at registration. 9:30 a.m. $15. http://www.thecjm.org.
spiritual & holiday
Mimouna. North African celebration of the last day of Passover with food, dancing and singing. At Congregation Emanu-El, 2 Lake St., S.F. 7:30 p.m. Free. http://www.emanuelsf.org.
Mystical seder. At Richmond Torah Center Chabad, 423-10th Ave., S.F. 6:15 p.m. Free. http://www.rtchabad.org.
Multicultural community freedom seder. “The Three Matzot: Families, Jobs & Justice” honors the 100th anniversary of the Bread and Roses strike of 1912. At JCC of San Francisco, 3200 California St., S.F. 6:30 p.m. $35-$40. http://www.jccsf.org.
Peninsula interfaith freedom seder. At Peninsula Temple Sholom, 1655 Sebastian Drive, Burlingame. 5:45 p.m. $20. RSVP to http://www.jcrc.org.
Community dinner. Vegetarian Shabbat meal for families. At JCC East Bay, 1414 Walnut St., Berkeley. 6 p.m. $7-$13. http://www.jcceastbay.org.
Mimouna. North African celebration to mark end of Passover. With food, henna tattoos and jamming (bring an instrument). At Hillel at Stanford, Koret Pavilion, 564 Lane A, Stanford. Free. (415) 626-5062.
Yom HaZikaron gathering. Readings, singing and sharing of memories in observance of Israel’s Memorial Day. At Jewish Community Federation, 121 Steuart St., S.F. 9 a.m. Free. http://www.jewishfed.org.
Yom HaAtzmaut celebration. Performance by folk-rock singer Micha Biton, Israeli dancing, arts and crafts. At Peninsula JCC, 800 Foster City Blvd., Foster City. 5 p.m. Free. http://www.pjcc.org.
Yom HaAtzmaut celebration. Israeli food, ceremony, fashion show, dancing. At Oshman Family JCC, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto. 4:30 p.m. Free. http://www.paloaltojcc.org.
Yom HaAtzmaut celebration. Alan King and the Nigunim Folk Chorus will provide music and Israeli folk dance lessons. At Congregation Beth El, 1301 Oxford St., Berkeley. 5:30 p.m. Free. http://www.bethelberkeley.org.
Yom HaAtzmaut seder. To commemorate 70 years of history in Israel. At Congregation Emanu-El, 2 Lake St., S.F. 6 p.m. $5-$10. http://www.emanuelsf.org.
Tour of Ainsley House in Campbell. Sponsored by Silicon Valley Jewish Widow/Widower Singles. 1 p.m. $3. RSVP to (408) 266-6126.