The Temple Sinai Ensemble Choir, Toronto Jewish Folk Choir and Upper Canada Choristers join together for two performances of a Holocaust remembrance concert, Voices from the Whirlwind, as part of Holocaust Education Week.
A scheduled highlight of the evening of songs in Yiddish, English and Russian is Charles Osborne’s composition, I Didn’t Speak Out, featuring the rueful words of German anti-Nazi theologian Martin Niemoeller. It is one of several pieces to be performed jointly by all three choirs.
Both concerts are free. The first takes place at Grace Church-on-the-Hill, 300 Lonsdale Rd. on Nov. 6, 8 p.m. The second takes place at Temple Sinai, 210 Wilson Ave. on Nov. 15, 9 p.m., following 8 p.m. Sabbath services.
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PJ Library Chanukah Concert: PJ Library is a program that sends free Jewish-themed books to children across Canada: the “PJ” stands for pyjamas and invokes that time of day when parents and children read books together. A Chanukah Live 2013 concert sponsored by PJ Library features Juno-award winning performers Judy & David. Isabel Bader Theatre, 140 Charles St. W. Nov. 24, 3 p.m. Tickets $18 with discount code PJLibrary. www.pjlibraryToronto.ca
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Arts in Brief
•“The Evolution of Israeli Songs,” a lecture with song clips by Kobi Hass, presented by the MNjcc Hebrew Institute. Free admission. Miles Nadal JCC, Sunday Nov. 10, 2 to 3:30 p.m.
• Toronto Jewish Film Society presents Monsieur Batignole, a deft mix of comedy and drama about a butcher in wartime France responsible for the arrest of a Jewish family above his store, who must examine his conscience after one of the family’s children shows up at his old home. With guest speaker Yves Etienne Massicotte and refreshments. $15, $10. Miles Nadal JCC, Al Green Theatre. Two screenings, Nov. 10, 4 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Tickets available at the door 15 minutes before screen times.
•Critic Kevin Courrier continues his series on the films of Robert Altman with a talk on “Film Noir (Part Two) – Thieves Like Us.” $11.25 drop in, students $6. Miles Nadal JCC, Monday Nov. 11, 7 to 9 p.m.
•Lily Poritz Miller reads from her new book, The Newcomers, about a South African Jewish family with Lithuanian roots that immigrates to a New England town after World War II. Barbara Frum Library, 20 Covington Rd. Nov. 13, 7 to 8:15 p.m.
•Pride of Israel presents the Robin Langdon Quartet in concert, featuring an hour of music inspired by Jewish composers. $15, $20, $25. 59 Lissom Cres., Nov. 16, 7 p.m. 416-226-0111.
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At the Galleries
•Waddington’s auctions Charles Bronfman’s Claridge Collection, comprising more than 900 contemporary works by 372 Canadian artists, including David Bolduc, David Blackwood, Edward Burtynsky, Alex Cameron, John Massey, Alex Wyse, Alan Wood, Don Proch and many others. Waddington’s, 275 King St. E., 2nd floor. Nov. 6, decorative arts sale at 1 p.m., fine arts at 7 p.m. Proceeds to benefit Historica Canada. waddingtons.ca. [See full story cjnews.com]
• Recent paintings by Judi Lederman are on view at the Leaside Public Library, 165 McRae Dr. until Nov. 30. Reception Nov. 7, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Artist present, Saturday Nov. 16, 1 to 5 p.m.
•Harry Benson – the Beatles 50th Anniversary is an exhibition of iconic 20th century images that includes the Beatles and other celebrity photographic portraits. Liss Gallery, 140 Yorkville Ave. Nov. 16 to Dec. 16. Opening reception with artist, Nov. 16, 6:30 to 9 p.m. RSVP to 416-787-9872 or firstname.lastname@example.org
• Rhythm Distributed, works by Bernice Eisenstein, on view in the Miles Nadal JCC Gallery until Nov. 18.
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Passages: Joe King, award-winning journalist, broadcaster and author of a host of books on Jewish Montreal and other subjects, died last week in Montreal at the age of 90.
Born in Toronto in 1923, King got his first job as a copy boy at the Canadian Press New Agency and worked in radio for several years before joining the RCAF in the Second World War. Afterwards he helped establish CTV’s television station in Halifax where he hosted and produced many television news programs.
He also served as director of marketing and communications for Montreal’s Federation CJA for 20 years, during which he met most of Israel’s political leaders including David Ben-Gurion, Golda Meir, Moshe Dayan and Ariel Sharon. An untiring champion of Israel, he visited the Jewish state perhaps 20 times and edited and distributed a pro-Israel geopolitical e-newsletter almost daily until several days before he died.
He once was invited into an “off-the-record” cabinet meeting headed by Meir, who noticed that he was taking notes and told him: “Young man, this is an off-the-record occasion.” “I’m aware of that, I’m only taking notes with love,” King replied, and Meir never said another word.
King loved Canadian Jewish history and made many intriguing discoveries about the Jews of Montreal. In his book Fabled City, he identified three villains – prime minister Mackenzie King, his justice minister Ernest Lapointe, and British high commissioner Vincent Massey – for failing to respond to the destruction of European Jews in the Nazi era.
His books include From the Ghetto to the Main (2000), The Case for Israel (2002), The Jewish Contribution to the Modern World (2004), Baron Byng to Bagels (2006), Rekindling the Torch: the Story of Canadian Zionism (2008) and Fabled City: the Jews of Montreal (2009).