Aviva Chernick, the lead singer of the Juno-nominated band Jaffa Road and other ensembles, is launching a solo CD, When I Arrived You Were Already There.
She performs at the launch with various musicians playing a range of exotic instruments such as tabla, udu, xaphoon, oud, djembe and bansuri along with electric guitar, piano, bass and percussion. Vocalists Maryem Tollar and Sundar Viswanathan assist in singing her original compositions in both English and Hebrew.
918 Bathurst (north of Bloor), Wednesday, Dec. 5. Doors open 7:30 p.m., concert at 8. $20 at the door, $15 in advance online at BrownPaperTickets. Chernick and ensemble also perform at Or Sholom Synagogue in London, Ont. on the evening of Dec. 8.
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Genealogy and Music: The Jewish Genealogical Society of Toronto presents musician Eric Stein who will deliver “An Inspiring Tale of Genealogy, Remembrance and Musical Innovation: The History of the Ger Mandolin Orchestra.” The orchestra was the brainchild of Israeli-American Avner Yonai after discovering that his grandfather and other relatives played in it; the new band (in which Stein is a member) made a premiere performance in California, then another in the remains of a former synagogue the town of Gora Kalwaria, Poland, where no Jewish music had sounded for 70 years. Temple Sinai, Wednesday, Nov. 28, 8 p.m. Members free, guests $5.
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Friends of Yiddish: Mitch Smolkin and the Yiddish Swingtet (Jonno Lightstone, Jordan Klapman, Tony Quarrington) headline a Chanukah Hulyanke Concert sponsored by Friends of Yiddish, also featuring refreshments, door prizes and more. Beth Tikvah Synagogue, 3080 Bayview Ave. (between Sheppard and Finch). Sunday Dec. 2, 2 p.m. Members $8, guests $15. RSVP to Sandy, 416-458-1440 or firstname.lastname@example.org by Nov. 27.
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Names in the News: The Stratford Festival has announced its 2013 lineup of forum speakers, including several of special interest to the Jewish community related to Stratford’s upcoming productions of Fiddler on the Roof and The Merchant of Venice.
York University associate professor Marlis Schweitzer speaks on “Breaking with Tradition: Fiddler on the Roof and the 1960s Generation Gap,” while Alisa Solomon of The Village Voice discusses Fiddler’s Fortunes.
Len Rudner and Frank Bialystok from the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs and Shakespeare expert Vivian Rakoff examine the confrontation of synagogue and state in The Merchant of Venice, and a panel of prominent lawyers present an appeal of Shylock’s sentence. As well, New Yorker writer Adam Gopnik discusses “Shakespeare and Feasting.”
Other events include a workshop in Israeli Folk Dancing, a concert by the ARC Ensemble titled “Tradition and the Jewish Composer,” and a screening of Hollywoodism: Jews, Movies and the American Dream with director Simcha Jacobovici. All take place between May and October of 2013. Further details at www.stratfordfestival.ca
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Arts in Brief
• Hadar Noiberg Trio performs their blend of jazz improvs, Western harmonies and Middle Eastern and North African rhythms and melodies. Miles Nadal JCC, Al Green Theatre, Thursday Nov. 22, 8 p.m. $25, $20. 416-924-6211, ext. 0.
• Shlomo Schwartzberg continues his series on the cinema of Sidney Lumet with an examination (with film clips) of New York, New York, The Wiz, Dog Day Afternoon, 12 Angry Men, Just Tell Me What You Want, Prince of the City and Fail-Safe. Miles Nadal JCC, Monday Nov. 26, 7 to 9 p.m. Drop-in, $12, $6 for students.
• Yoav Talmi, conductor emeritus of the Quebec Symphony and principal guest conductor of the Israel Chamber Orchestra in Tel Aviv, conducts the Royal Conservatory Orchestra. The program features Berlioz, Bizet and Shostakovich. Koerner Hall, Royal Conservatory TELUS Centre, 273 Bloor St. W. Nov. 30, 8 p.m. Tickets start at $25.
•Canadian-Latin-Jewish singer-songwriter Amanda Martinez performs with special guest Javier Limón. Koerner Hall, Saturday, Dec. 1, 8 p.m. Tickets start at $30. rcmusic.ca, 416-408-0208.
• By popular acclaim, Toronto Jewish Film Society presents Annie Hall, with Woody Allen and Diane Keaton and guest speaker Adam Nayman. Al Green Theatre, Sunday Dec. 2, 4 and 7:30 p.m. Individual seats on sale 15 minutes before each screening. No one under 18 admitted. Dress like Annie Hall and bring a friend for free. 416-924-6211, ext. 606.
• Active Seniors & Boomers presents a Chanukah Musical Celebration with Aviva Chernick singing in Hebrew, Judeo, Spanish, Yiddish & English. Thursday Dec. 13, 1:30 p.m. Refreshments. $5. Preregister by Dec. 3 to 416-924-6211, ext. 0.