Shalom Auslander, who has been called “America’s hottest, funniest, most controversial young Jewish memoirist,” is being interviewed by Toronto author Michael Wex (whose wry humour is renowned) to open the inaugural Toronto Jewish Book Festival on June 4, 8 p.m. in its new location at the Toronto Reference Library’s Bram and Bluma Appel Salon. Auslander is the author, most recently, of Hope: A Tragedy. $25 advance or at the door.
Other programs feature David Berlin, author of The Moral Lives of Israelis – Reinventing the Dream State, with Dr. Dan Mendelsohn Aviv, author of End of the Jews: Radical Breaks, Remakes and What Comes Next; Canadian music impresario Bernie Finklestein, author of True North: A Life Inside the Music Business; business entrepreneur Mal Coven, author of How I Succeeded in Retirement and the Bi-Way Story; Carol-Bishop-Gwyn and Fraidie Martz, authors of new biographies of dancer Celia Franca and theatrical director John Hirsch, respectively; and numerous others.
The festival runs June 4 to 7 and culminates in the Helen and Stan Vine Canadian Jewish Book Awards. For the full festival program, visit www.kofflerarts.org.
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Tribute to Sidney Lumet: Toronto Jewish Film Society presents Daniel, starring Timothy Hutton, Mandy Patinkin and Amanda Plummer. Based on the lives of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, Jewish spies executed for treason against the United States, Daniel is a powerful look at how the sins of the parents are visited upon the children.
Directed by Sidney Lumet and scripted by E. L. Doctorow from his novel The Book of Daniel. Guest speaker Kevin Courrier. Miles Nadal JCC, Al Green Theatre. Sunday June 3, 4 and 7:30 p.m. $15, $10. Seats on sale 15 minutes before each screening.
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Festival and Book Launch: Letters & Pictures from the Old Suitcase, an anthology of poetry and short prose by 32 Canadian Jewish writers, is being launched at the Hamilton Jewish Literary Festival. Other events include readings, workshops and panel discussions. Temple Anshe Sholom, 215 Cline Ave. N., Hamilton. Sunday June 3, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
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Lost in Yonkers: Marion Ross, Linda Kash, Sheila McCarthy, Ari Cohen and David Eisner star in the Harold Green Jewish Theatre Company production of Lost in Yonkers, the Neil Simon play about two brothers left in the care of their stern grandmother in wartime Yonkers. $42.50 to $79.50. St. Lawrence Centre, Jane Mallett Theatre, until June 10. www.stlc.com, 416-366-7723.
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Names in the News: “The brilliant young American cellist Alisa Weilerstein,” as the New York Times has described her, performs Shostakovich’s Cello Concerto with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra as part of the TSO’s Brahms Symphony 2 program on May 24 and May 26. The Times lauded her “impassioned, intelligent playing” of this work. www.tso.ca
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Arts in Brief
• The Temple Mount is a three-part documentary series on Vision TV that relates the history and explores mysteries surrounding Jerusalem’s Temple Mount, past, present and future. Part One, Solomon’s Temple, airs May 23, 10 p.m., with the second two parts at weekly intervals in the same time-slot. Produced by Arcadia Entertainment Inc.
• Critic Adam Nayman continues his series of lectures with film clips, this time discussing Stanley Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange and Barry Lyndon. $12 drop-in, students $6. Miles Nadal JCC, Monday June 4, 7 to 9 p.m. 416-924-6211, ext. 606.
• Hear the MNjcc Community Choir in concert. $10. Miles Nadal JCC, Al Green Theatre. Wednesday June 6 and Thursday June 7, 8 p.m. 416-924-6211, ext. 0.
• Opera educator Iain Scott presents Nabucco, Verdi’s Jewish opera, with video excerpts of a performance. $5, includes refreshments. Active Seniors, Miles Nadal JCC, Thursday June 7, 1:30 p.m. 416-924-6211, ext. 155.
• Koffler Centre of the Arts and Luminato present Tel Aviv’s Batsheva Dance Company performing the North American premiere of Sadeh21, choreographed by artistic director Ohad Naharin. MacMillan Theatre, 80 Queen’s Park. Thursday June 14. www.kofflerarts.org
• Submission deadline is July 3 for the Canadian Jewish Playwriting Competition. firstname.lastname@example.org, 416-924-6211, ext. 606.
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At the Galleries
• Journey is a collection of art works by students, teachers and artists Samuel Bak, Donna Zeka, Bruce Brown and Mary Ann Grainger on the theme of genocide. Al Green Gallery, 64 Merton St. until May 30.