Short Takes

Hirsi Ali Still Defiant Against Islam; Is Judaism In Her Future?

Editor and Publisher

Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a supporter of atheism who rejected her Muslim faith as anti-women and anti-tolerance, told a group of guests at the home of Israeli Consul General Ido Aharoni last Thursday evening, “One day I hope to convert to Judaism.”

Ayaan Hirsi Ali. Getty Images

Swiping Their Way To The Chuppah

Staff Writer

Turns out she was just his swipe.

When Michael Brand, 39, went down to Florida for vacation last June, he never expected to meet his future bride. But just for kicks, Brand, a divorced father of two from Manhattan, had signed up for JSwipe, the Jewish dating app likened to Tinder.

Samantha Rudnick, 26, and Michael Brand, 39, first JSwipe couple to wed. Courtesy of Samantha Rudnick

Orthodox Drag Queens Proudly Jew It Up

Doing drag while staying frum is a growing phenomenon in NYC's LGBTQ scene.

Staff Writer

Jewish drag is on the rise as more and more observant Jews come out of the cross-dressing closet.

Silvia Sparklestein, left, with Hebro founder Jason Littman and another Jewish drag queen, Lady Havokk. Courtesy of Hebro

UJA Exec Named To FEGS Probe Group


UJA-Federation of New York CEO Eric Goldstein is among the two dozen nonprofit human services executives and other experts in the field named to a blue-ribbon commission to examine the sudden shuttering of FEGS and other nonprofit human service providers.

The Weinberg Health Related and Human Services Center in Manhattan is among several now-closed FEGS agencies. Michael Datikash

Contest-Winning Play Is Nod To Paul Robeson

Culture Editor

When the legendary actor and civil rights activist Paul Robeson gave a concert in Moscow in 1949, he closed the show with one encore: his rendition in Yiddish of the “Partisan’s Hymn,” the anthem of Jewish resistance fighters.

Actor-civil rights activist Paul Robeson, right, was the inspiration to Ben Gonshor’s play, “When Blood Ran Red.” Getty Images

Bagels And Power Tools

Forget the schmear. You want that cream cheese inside your bagel.

For Your Purim Pleasure

Surrealist Meir Kalmanson of 'High-Five New York' takes it to the Holy Land in 'Dancing Behind People in Jerusalem.'

Curb Your Nervousness: Directing Larry David

Special To The Jewish Week

I was very nervous at first,” Anna D. Shapiro told The Jewish Week about her reaction to being chosen to direct Larry David’s “Fish in the Dark,” which opens this week on Broadway. “I adore the guy; he’s been so seminal in the formation of my own sense of humor. I didn’t want him to think that I wasn’t funny.”

Larry David and Ben Shenkman in “Fish in the Dark,” left. Joan Marcus

First Hebrew Fest Hits NYC, With Beer

Staff Writer

Interested in a free Israeli bira?

In the first festival of its kind, the Israeli-American Council is partnering with the Steinhardt Foundation and the Council for Hebrew Language and Culture to host Hagigah Ivrit, a citywide celebration of the Hebrew language and Israeli culture. The festival, which will run from March 14-30, features everything from a Hebrew “Peter and the Wolf” performance to a best-selling Israeli author’s reading to a beer sing-along. Events will take place at a variety of locations across over the city.

Israel’s Goldstar beer will be on tap at first Hebrew-language festival here next week.  Wikimedia Commons

Downton’s Intermarriage For The Ages

The Abbey's Jewish subplot takes center stage.

Staff Writer

If it comes to pass that Lady Rose and the dashing Member of the Tribe, Atticus Aldridge — the new “It” couple on “Downton Abbey” — have a child, it will surely be a closely watched interfaith upbringing.

Against all odds: Lady Rose and Atticus Aldridge tie the knot. Nick Briggs/Carnival Films for MASTERPIECE
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