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By Samantha Shokin for Tablet Magazine
How theremin virtuosa Clara Rockmore’s life and loves shaped her eerie music
The theremin was the first electronic instrument to be mass-produced and the only instrument played without physical contact. Originally shaped like a box with two antennae, one for pitch control, the other for volume, its unmistakable sound has long been associated with vintage science fiction—warbling, eerie, inorganic. 2020 will mark the centennial of its invention by the Russian physicist Leon Theremin. But it was Clara Rockmore, considered by many to be the greatest thereminist in history, who elevated the instrument above novelty status, leading Theremin to fall in love with her.
By Lior Zaltzman for Kveller
I love Shtisel, you love Shtisel, everybody loves Shtisel! The Israeli show, about an Ultra-Orthodox family of the same last name, is taking American audiences by storm. Streaming on Netflix, this show has been covered by the New York Times and even has a Facebook fan group with more than 6,000 fans.
Talya Zax for The Forward
What happens in the mind of a genius?
Mozart’s mind was puerile; if his extraordinary sophistication with music extended to other aspects of his psyche, he didn’t show it. Van Gogh was subject to psychotic episodes, a struggle that may have impacted his work, although we can only speculate. Bits of Einstein’s brain are preserved in Philadelphia for scientific research. But the brain and mind are linked in profound and complex ways, and science may only be able to look so far.
Music has been a part of Jewish life since biblical times, and remains integral to the Jewish religious and cultural experiences.
At the moment of Israel’s birth as a nation — the Exodus from Egypt — the Bible tells us that Moses led the people of Israel in a song of divine praise. Music was part of the sacrificial worship in the Temple, and later became part of synagogue prayer services and at-home religious observance. Jewish music tends to blend unique elements with aspects that reflect the cultures in which Jews have lived, composed, played instruments, and sung.
By Aron Hirt-Manheimer for ReformJudaism.org
Dear Erich: A Jazz Opera, co-produced by the New York City Opera and National Yiddish Theatre Folkbiene, premiered in January 2019 at the Museum of Jewish Heritage in Manhattan to standing ovations. The music is by Ted Rosenthal, the world-renowned jazz pianist and composer; he and Lesley Rosenthal wrote the libretto.
Ted Rosenthal conceived Dear Erich after learning the contents of 200 letters, written mostly by his grandmother, Herta, trapped in Nazi Germany, to his father, safe in America.
By NoCamels Team
The bible has for centuries been a source of inspiration and influence for art in all its forms. The canonical collection of texts sacred to Abrahamic religions has indeed inspired some of the world’s greatest known works of art.
Israeli photographer Dikla Laor has worked for six years to bring the stories of female biblical figures to life through the camera lens, embarking on a unique project to imagine these characters’ appearances, dress, and demeanor against breathtaking backdrops. Her “Biblical Women Series” includes the “first woman,” Eve, the Jewish matriarchs – Sarah, Rivka (Rebecca), Leah and Rachel – Lot’s wife, the Queen of Sheba, the prophetess Deborah, and Jezebel, among over 40 such photographs.
By Lior Zaltzman for Kveller
OK, OK. I really don’t know much about football. (And I *know* I’m not the only one, right?) But I know that Super Bowl parties usually have really good snacks, and the televised event is full of very expensive, sometimes moving and sometimes hilarious commercials. And yes, I know that there are some pretty good reasons to feel icky about supporting the NFL.
By Francine Wolfisz for JewishNews.Times of Israel
Ten reasons why Israel is now the go-to nation for original TV drama
When Israel celebrated its 20th Independence Day in 1968, another milestone was gladly reached when black-and-white images of the parade were filmed for the first time by a state broadcaster and shown to the nation.
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Beth El is getting a new playground! If you would like to donate towards this very worthy project, simply send your donations to Beth El Hebrew Congregation and notate "Playground." If you donate on line, the playground fund is first on the list!
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