Posted: Tue, 12/16/2014 - 17:06 | Posted by: Angela Himsel | Well Versed
"House of David" inscription, ca. 830 BCE,Israel Antiquities Authority, courtesy of The Israel Museum. Meidad Suchowolski

 Elie Wiesel describes the Bible as “the pull of my childhood, a fascination with the vanished world, and I can find everything except that world.”

I feel much the same way, which is why the Metropolitan Museum’s exhibit “Assyria to Iberia at the Dawn of the Classical Age” so thrilled me. The premise of the exhibit isn’t Israel or the Bible.  Rather, it explores cross-cultural interaction and global communication during the Assyrian Empire from roughly 1200 – 400 BCE, the time period that many major Biblical events took place. 

Posted: Fri, 12/12/2014 - 01:11 | Posted by: Yaakov Bressler | Well Versed
Clarinetist Avigail Malachi accompanied by Elad Kabilio on cello. Anna Shneyderman

Whiny trills of klezmer music reverberate from the towering coffered ceiling of the Museum at Eldridge Street as five firmly concentrating Israeli musicians connect deeply to their Jewish roots through the song of klezmer. Their focused brows and eased smiles signify the technicalities and synchronous timing of their music, as well as their delight in performing it. This is 12th Night Music, a quintet of highly creative classically trained Israeli musicians.

Posted: Wed, 12/10/2014 - 16:47 | Posted by: Susan Reimer-Torn | Well Versed
Anna Sokolow at 70. Courtesy Sokolow Theatre/Dance Ensemble

Why did I travel to the other end of town to see a tribute to Anna Sokolow so many decades after I last saw –  or even thought about – her work? The answer is that Anna Sokolow, an important contributor to the repertory of American modern dance for sixty years, gave me permission to dance.

Posted: Thu, 12/04/2014 - 22:57 | Posted by: Sandee Brawarsky | Well Versed
Inside The Red Tent. Courtesy Lifetime

This Shabbat, we read the story of Dinah, the only daughter of the biblical Jacob, whose tragic tale is tucked into the narrative of parshat Vaylishlach. And on Sunday evening, Lifetime Television will air the first of a two-part mini-series based on Anita Diamant’s wildly successful 1997 novel inspired by Dinah’s  story, "The Red Tent." The confluence of these dates, according to Diamant, is “totally coincidental.”

Posted: Tue, 11/25/2014 - 16:22 | Posted by: Yaakov Bressler | Well Versed
Appraiser Helaine Fendelman examining an artistic work. Photo by Tzippy Katz

“What do you know about it?” the first person in line is asked. The others, with grimly pursed lips, nervously await their turns to have valuables appraised.