Rank and File: Rise Up Singing

Rise up singing, English for Olim and Cape Town to Herzliya

Jason McKinney as Paul Robeson with Christopher Bagley at the piano
UNITED IN MUSIC INC

RISE UP SINGING: Jason McKinney, who performed in “Porgy and Bess” in Israel earlier this year, has returned to the country for a benefit tour. The show, “Moments with Paul,” chronicles the life of the athlete, actor, singer, lawyer and human-rights activist Paul Robeson, who died in 1976. He and his piano accompanist Chris Bagley will perform from November 6 to 17 with tour host Haifa English Theater in Haifa and Jerusalem. Proceeds will benefit OneFamily International, whose mission is “to rehabilitate, reintegrate and rebuild the lives of Israel’s thousands of victims of terror attacks,” according to the organizers. “Jason is totally charismatic,” HET’s Betsy Lewis Yizraeli told Haaretz about the opera singer, a Milwaukee native. “We met between rehearsals. He showed me pictures of his son’s bar mitzvah. He can’t finish a sentence without breaking into song. He has a beautiful voice.” For Haifa tickets, call Adrienne at (04) 870-8910 and for Jerusalem call Bella at (02) 673-7183. 

ENGLISH FOR OLIM: Yair Amit may be a sabra, but being married to his immigrant wife, Anna, he has been concerned about their welfare in Israel. “Rumors are that 40 percent of olim go back,” he told Haaretz. “One of the reasons is that they don’t find a good job.” Consequently, he partnered with Oren Zahavi, another sabra who has been involved in supporting lone soldiers, to create Yahav College, which offers professional courses in English to new immigrants. “We want them to have a better profession that they can use where they have an advantage of knowing the language and culture,” said Amit. “We also help them find jobs with our connection.” Yahav will hold an open house in Tel Aviv next Wednesday evening. Amit added that government scholarships are available to cover 80 percent of tuition. Those who don’t qualify are eligible for a privately-funded 50 percent scholarship. For more info, call Yahav at 076-540-8448.

CAPE TOWN TO HERZLIYA: To mark 175 years of Jewish religious and cultural life in South Africa, the South African Jewish Museum in Cape Town developed an exhibition reflecting the community’s social history. The free exhibition will be on display at the Herzliya gallery of Beth Protea, which is co-hosting the exhibition in association with the museum and Telfed, the South African Zionist Federation (Israel), from Friday, Nov. 10 through Tuesday, Nov. 14. The exhibition consists of 43 panels of anecdotes and images, a curated series of 12 photographic images by South African photographic artist Jenny Altschuler and two specially produced short films on different aspects of South African Jewish life,” according to the organizers. For more info, call Marcelle or Barry at (09) 957-3280.

Rank and File was compiled by Steven Klein.

Have an idea about an item for Rank and File? E-mail us at: column@haaretz.co.il