Friday, June 29, 2012

cover story

news & features




opinions & letters






Arts in Nomadic Grove. Outdoor art class in conjunction with the exhibit “Do Not Destroy: Trees, Art and Jewish Thought.” At the Contemporary Jewish Museum, 736 Mission St., S.F. 12:30 p.m. Free.


Russian community celebration. Theatrical and musical performances in conjunction with art exhibit by local Russian artists. Celebrating 20th anniversary of the Oshman Family JCC Russian department. At Oshman Family JCC, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto. 5 p.m. Free.


“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.

Israel China Cultural Festival book exhibition. Bestselling Israeli books translated into Chinese and English. On display and to borrow. Through July 1. At S.F. Public Library Chinatown branch, 1135 Powell St., S.F. Also at Main Library, 100 Larkin St., S.F.

“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.” 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.

“Jews of Kaifeng.” Exhibit of maps, photos and documents on the Jews of Kaifeng, China. Part of Israel China Cultural Festival. Through Aug. 31. At JCC of San Francisco, 3200 California St., S.F. Free.

“More Than Enough: Redefining Excess.” Jewish artists answer “When do we need more than enough?” Through Aug. 5. At BJE Jewish Community Library, 1835 Ellis St., S.F.

“Sephardic Women of Turkey.” Photographs by Audrey Ray Daniel. At Addison-Penzak JCC, 14855 Oka Road, Los Gatos. Through Aug. 24. .

“Territory.” Israeli artist Yigal Ozeri’s large-scale, photo-realistic oil paintings pairing women with natural settings. Through June 30. At Jenkins Johnson Gallery, 464 Sutter St., S.F.

“Wings of the Phoenix.” Israel China Cultural Festival exhibit on Chinese diplomat and former S.F. resident Feng Shan Ho and his rescue of Austrian Jews during World War II. Through July 1. At Chinese Historical Society of America, 965 Clay St., S.F. Free.

photo/ peter varshavsky
photo/ peter varshavsky

‘Secrets of Secrets’

Avant-garde composer and clarinetist Aaron Novik approached his latest album with serious and profound goals — he wanted to take a deep look into Jewish mysticism. Inspired by the writings of the scholar and mystic Eleazar of Worms, Novik produced “Secrets of Secrets,” an album of what he calls “dark metal jazz.” He will perform the pieces with a large ensemble at the Contemporary Jewish Museum on July 15. It promises to be a conceptually interesting and meaningful afternoon of music. 

3 p.m. Sunday, July 15 at the Contemporary Jewish Museum, 736 Mission St., S.F. Free with admission.


“My heart Is in the East.” Concert of sacred Hebrew music of the Middle East with Q&A to follow. At Kol Ha Emek, 8591 West Road, Redwood Valley. 8 p.m. $15. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

on stage


‘Fiddler on the Woof’

What happens when the shtetl goes to the dogs? You get “Fiddler on the Woof,” which a group of dog owners plan to stage at Joaquin Miller Park in Oakland. The owners and their four-legged companions will get together for a party before an outdoor performance of “Fiddler on the Roof” in the Woodminster Summer Musicals series. Proceeds from the party will go to maintain Joaquin Miller Dog Park. Come for the tail wagging, stay for “Tradition.”

6 p.m. Thursday July 12 at Joaquin Miller Park, 3300 Joaquin Miller Road, Oakland. Performance at 8 p.m. Also performances without the dog party July 13-22, all at 8 p.m. For information about the dog party: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). For information on the production:


Six-word memoirs on Jewish life. Eight Bay Area Jewish personalities relate stories based on their six-word memoirs. At the Contemporary Jewish Museum, 736 Mission St., S.F. 6:30 p.m. $10 (includes admission).  (see story, 21)


Jeff Applebaum. Bay Area-based comedian. At Napa Valley Opera House, 1030 Main St., Napa. 7:30 p.m. $15.

film & video


“The Jazz Singer.” 1980 musical film that explores tensions between first- and second-generation Jews. At Contemporary Jewish Museum, 736 Mission St., S.F. 2 p.m. Free, in conjunction with “First Free Tuesdays.”


“Eli Yatzpan visits President Peres.” Israeli film in which comedian Eli Yatzpan spends the day with Shimon Peres. In Hebrew.  At Oshman Family JCC, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto. 8 p.m. $10-$15. 


“Radio Days.” Woody Allen film about a Jewish family in Queens in the 1940s. At BJE Jewish Community Library, 1835 Ellis St., S.F. 7 p.m. Free.

lectures & workshops


‘From Shtetl to Broadway’

From Irving Berlin to George Gershwin to Leonard Bernstein, Russian-Jewish immigrants and their sons and daughters took central roles in shaping the Great American Songbook. Through performances and stories, the accomplished singers
Mike Greensill and Wesla Whitfield will trace many of Broadway’s melodic themes to the music of Eastern European shtetls as they bring to life some of Broadway’s most memorable tunes and personalities.

7:30 p.m. Sunday, July 15 at Oshman Family JCC, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto. $23-$35.


“The Jewish-Armenian Connection.” Talk and video presentation on Holocaust and Armenian genocide films by historian Lawrence Baron, author of “Projecting the Holocaust into the Present.” At Albany Community Center, 1249 Marin Ave., Albany. 11 a.m. $10.


“Rabbi Sherwin Wine and Humanistic Judaism.” Video presentation and discussion about the founder of the Jewish Humanistic movement.  At Albany Community Center, 1249 Marin Ave., Albany. 4 p.m. Free.


Book talk by Joshua Henkin. Author of “The World Without You,” a novel about a contemporary American Jewish family that loses a son in Iraq. At The Booksmith, 1644 Haight St., S.F. 7:30 p.m. Also July 12 at Mrs. Dalloway’s, 2904 College Ave., Berkeley, 7:30 p.m. and July 13 Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd, Corte Madera, 1 p.m.


Lunch and talk for seniors. Shir Hadash Rabbi Melanie Aron discusses Jewish quotas at the best U.S. universities and why they ended. At Congregation Shir Hadash, 20 Cherry Blossom Lane, Los Gatos. 11:30 a.m. $5 suggested.


“Researching When Records Are Gone.” Talk by genealogist Nancy Peterson to  San Francisco Bay Area Jewish Genealogical Society. At Rhoda Goldman Plaza, 2180 Post St., S.F. 1:30 p.m. Free.


“Planning for Your Aging Future.” Elder care lawyer Priscilla Camp leads a workshop on planning for end of life care. At JFCS, 2484 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley. 4 p.m. Free. RSVP by July 13 to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). www.


Mah jongg beginners’ class. Ongoing class on mah jongg. At Afikomen Judaica, 3042 Claremont Ave., Berkeley. 6 p.m. $150 for four classes. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

benefits & social events


The chosen dance floor

Second Saturday, the monthly night for Jewish young adults in The Cellar nightclub in downtown San Francisco, has been a staple of the Jewish young adult scene since it began in 2001. If you haven’t checked it out, you’re missing out on great atmosphere, drink specials served up by bartenders from the community, great appetizers and talented DJs. So put on a nice outfit and head over for a night of shmoozing, noshing and dancing.

8 p.m. Saturday, July 14 at The Cellar, 685 Sutter St., S.F. $15 includes four drinks.


“HUBad SoMa Shul.” Chabad of S.F.’s new Friday happy hour followed by Shabbat services and dinner. At S.F. School of Digital Filmmaking, 925 Mission St., Suite 108. 5 p.m. Happy hour free, dinner $20.


Urban farming. The Young Adult Community of Congregatoin Emanu-El harvests produce for the Mission free farm stand. At the Free Farm, corner of Eddy and Gough streets, S.F. 10 a.m. Free.

Wise Sons Deli picnic. Summer picnic and a day of play. Young Adult Community of Congregation Emanu-El. At Dolores Park, S.F. 12 p.m. $15.


Kosher BBQ and pool party. With young adults’ group Jews’ Next Dor. At a private residence in San Jose. 11:30 a.m.-4 p.m. $10.


AIDS walk. Jewish community team. Beginning and ending in Sharon Meadow, Golden Gate Park, S.F. 9 a.m. Free.

spiritual & holiday


Pride Shabbat. 10th annual LGBT pride service and potluck. At Chochmat HaLev, 2215 Prince St., Berkeley. 6:30 p.m. Free.


“Minyan, Tea and Torah.” Study of the week’s Torah portion utilizing commentaries from a female perspective. At Temple Emanu-El, 1010 University Ave., San Jose. 9 a.m. Free.