Rank & File: Jerusalem Playhouse Turns to Sondheim Classic

American Idol finalist and new immigrant to perform for other new immigrants in Jerusalem; Israel advocacy meets comedy at English-language political satire show in Ra'anana.

Hanan Schoffman

SEND IN THE SONDHEIM: J-Town Playhouse turns to a Stephen Sondheim classic next week when it presents “Merrily We Roll Along” at the AACI’s Dr. Max and Gianna Glassman Family Center in Jerusalem. “I think anyone coming to see this show can identify with any of the many characters because it asks us basically how we got to where we are today, and the choices we make,” director Aviella Trapido, who grew up in South Africa on Sondheim’s music, told Haaretz. “It’s a reflective show wrapped up in beautiful music and beautiful stories.” The show stars Mory Buxner, Layla Schwartz, Gilad Rosenberg, Eyar Shteiman, Howard Metz, Rivital Singer, Avichai Binyamin Barlinski, Dale David Bocaccio, Amanda Keehn, Mira Sykes, Chaim Goldstein, Leora Elman, Bracha Daniel, and Shira Potter. Performances run from next Thursday through September 29. For more info, call (02) 566-1181.

ISRAELI-AMERICAN IDOL: Some four years after falling in love with Israel during a Birthright trip, American Idol finalist and new immigrant Brett Loewenstern will perform for other new immigrants in Jerusalem. Next Thursday’s Special Wine and Cheese Evening was organized by KeepOlim, one of Israel’s newest immigrant-support organizations. The kosher event, which includes boutique wines as well as gourmet food and cheeses, will culminate with what organizers described as an “intimate performance” by Loewenstern, who moved to Israel in February. They also said the event is for singles and couples 35 years old and up. KeepOlim was founded last year by Tal Ekrony, a sabra who did not want his American-born friend LiAmi Lawrence to leave Israel due to lack of employment and support. The movement now has nearly 27,000 Facebook members. For more info on KeepOlim event email liamilawrence@yahoo.com.

BORSCHT-BELTING BDS: Israel advocacy meets comedy next week when the Mizrachi World Movement will present “Stayin’ Alive,” an English-language political satire show, on September 7 in Ra’anana. The two stars, Noam Jacobson and Gady Weissbart, had approached South African-Israeli Rabbi Doron Peretz, head of Mizrachi, last year about developing a show that could be taken abroad to counteract BDS. “We gave them organizational backing, and they found scriptwriter Sarel Pieterman (of “Shtiesel”)” to write the skits, Peretz told Haaretz. The show is co-sponsored by Wits Alumni – graduates of Johannesburg’s University of the Witwatersrand – and Telfed, the Southern African immigrant organization in Israel. Les Glassman, the Wits alumni Israeli representative, told Haaretz he is helping with contacts abroad, so the two can take the show international. For more info, call Mizrachi at (02) 620-9003.

Rank and File was compiled by Steven Klein.

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