Rank and File: Together, Against the Odds’ on Stage and in Life

New musical promises to warm the coldest Haifa night.

דניאל רוט
Daniel Roth.

OPPOSITES ATTRACT: When a naive South African Methodist boy meets a sassy Israeli girl, an unlikely journey begins in “Together, Against the Odds.” The new musical comedy is by Grant Crankshaw and Daniella Roman, professional actors from South Africa who are married to each other, and it is loosely based on their lives. “The title represents what we need to be feeling,” Haifa English Theatre chairwoman Betsy Lewis Yizraeli told Haaretz on Wednesday. “It’s a musical, and it’s fun and funny. So it’s a cheer-up, good-time event in the middle of this very cold winter.” Roman, speaking to Haaretz on Wednesday, said, “Our story is complete comedy,” she told Haaretz. The show will go on in Haifa on Thursday, at the Beit Hagefen Auditorium. HET was founded in 1981 as a nonprofit community theater. Tickets at the door or call Adrienne at (04) 870-8910.

SHALOM, SALAAM, PEACE: While last week’s terror attacks in Paris arguably indicate how religious fanaticism fuels conflict, a new study track in religion and conflict resolution at Bar-Ilan University postulates religion’s power to mend fences. “This track will seek to bridge the theory, the practice and the texts of religion and conflict resolution,” Rabbi Daniel Roth of Bar-Ilan’s Program on Conflict Management and Negotiation said at the official launch on Tuesday. The announcement came at the start of an international conference on campus that brought together practicing Jews, Muslims and Christians and academics in the field. A special session was held for the purpose of providing “the backdrop for the very essential blend of theory and practice that is a must in our field,” noted Glasgow-born Dr. Alick Isaacs. He is the codirector of Siah Shalom / Talking Peace and the cochairmain of the program together with Roth, who grew up in Syracuse, New York, and is director of the Pardes Center for Judaism and Conflict Resolution.

HUMAN RIGHTS PRIZE: Bizchut, the Israel Human Rights Center for People with Disabilities, is the winner of the 2014 Gorney Prize for Public Law for Human Rights Organizations. The prize jury, which was headed by former Supreme Court Justice Edna Arbel, voted unanimously to award the prize to Bizchut. “It recognizes organizations with a long track record of success,” board member Josh Schoffman, originally from Brooklyn “a long time ago,” told Haaretz yesterday. Esther Sivan, executive director of Bizchut, said the most important aspect of the prize is its recognition of “human rights of persons with disabilities as a major issue on the legal and social agenda in Israel.” Bizchut’s board also includes English-speaking immigrants Jonathan Gilles, Thomas Gumpel and Ari Paltiel, while its staff includes Suzanne Cannon, its director of resource development.

Rank and File was compiled
by Steven Klein.

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