Rabbi David Spinrad’s Installation Shabbat Dinner

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The Soul of a Machine

Posted on March 25th, 2019
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.

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12 Israeli Shows to Binge Watch Now That You’re Done with ‘Shtisel’

Posted on March 18th, 2019
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.

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Inside The Mind Of Arnold Schoenberg, The Genius Who Defined 20th Century Music

Posted on March 11th, 2019
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.

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Jewish Music 101

Posted on March 4th, 2019


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.

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Dear Erich: An Exciting Addition to the Jazz Opera Repertory

Posted on February 25th, 2019
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.


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Beth El is raising funds for a new playground?

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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Wednesdays during the school year
@ 7:00 PM
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Upcoming Events




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Second Seder

The second seder at Beth El takes place on April 20, 2019 at 6:00 PM. The cost is $60 for members and $25 for member children and $80 for non members and $30 for non member children. RSVP here

   Spring Cleaning? Donate Your Books!!                         

Help support Beth El while cleaning your home. Donate your used books anytime. The office is always accepting donations year-round. 


Please sign up for Ushering at Beth El for Friday Night Services ​

This is a great opportunity to see and meet fellow congregants.Please use the link to sign up.


There are activities, meetings, services and seminars at Beth El each week, ranging from service opportunities to Jewish learning and education, drawing members and guests from throughout the Washington, D.C. area.

the full calendar