I’d Like to Thank the Academy

Actually, we do get to thank the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for a grant they made to support the Washington Jewish Film Festival. They are just one of the many organizations, embassies, foundations and individuals that provide the necessary funds and services that make the Festival possible. One of the ways we thank them is with a short trailer that plays before every Festival film. Below is this year’s edition, expertly created by the good folks at Seltzer Film and Video.

Fiona Chutney (aka Iris Bahr) Tries to Score Tix to an Inaugural Ball

We all know that our Inaugural Ball for Rest of Us attracted a varied audience and spawned many a misadventure. Here’s but another.

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Last night Jon Stewart noted, “It’s Sukkot, which is the Hebrew word meaning, “How many holidays can Jews fit into one month?”

Truly, the Jewish holiday season is non-stop action – from the reflective mood of Rosh Hashanah to the boisterous dancing at Simchat Torah, the holiday where we celebrate the yearly completion of the reading of the Five Books of Moses.

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How do we get the most out of this holiday season? I believe the preparation is the answer. And not only material preparation (shopping, cooking, etc.) But spiritual preparation.

Taking time to examine our behavior and our relationships brings deeper meaning to the High Holidays. And Sukkot, when we build and dwell in portable homes (Sukkot)  offers us an opportunity to reflect on the many blessings of having a permanent home – particularly in this year of foreclosures economic troubles.
Taking time to prepare enables maximum experience.

This fall, the Washington DCJCC is offering a different kind of preparation opportunity,   “Tying the Knot:  Pre-Marriage Workshop for Couples.” Wedding preparations can be stressful and overwhelming. And yet how much time do we devote to our spiritual preparations for the big day? “Tying the Knot” offers engaged couples a safe space to explore issues central to forming a healthy and happy marriage in a Jewish context.

Sarah Gershman is the Jewish Education Associate for the Leo and Anna Smilow Center for Jewish Living and Learning at the Washington DCJCC. Her children’s book The Bedtime Shma won the Sydney Taylor Book Award.

In Case You Missed It: BHL Talks About the Failure of European Liberals at the LitFest

Making Trouble: “Brass, Brio & Balls”

Great article in the Express this morning about our screening tomorrow night of Making Trouble:

The list of Jewish men who made their mark on American comedy is long and the tradition strong.

But what about the women?

“When we think of Jewish comics, we usually think of male comics,” historian Joyce Antler says in the documentary “Making Trouble,” which screens Tuesday night at the Washington DC JCC, with a special appearance by comedian Judy Gold.

“It took a long line of Jewish women who had show business in their hearts and souls to turn this around.”

Meet the Jewish mothers of comedy. They had brass, brio and balls. “Making Trouble” tells their story.

Click over to their site to read the full article and view some of the videos they’ve posted from the film. This first one below is the very beginning of the film…

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