What’s Happening in Jewish L.A. Dec. 15-21: Special Events, From Synagogues to Staples Center
FRI DEC 15
IKAR holds a musical, high-energy kabbalat Shabbat service, followed by a communal meal. Your favorite foods of the Festival of Lights are served. Vegetarian options available. 6:15 p.m. (scotch and services), 7:45 p.m. (dinner). $12. Shalhevet High School, 910 S. Fairfax Ave., Los Angeles. (323) 634-1870. ikar-la.org.
HANUKKAH BLUES SHABBAT AND CELEBRATION
Jewish blues artist Saul Kaye visits from San Francisco to perform at Temple Emanuel of Beverly Hills’ Hanukkah bash. 6:15 p.m. Free. Temple Emanuel of Beverly Hills, 8844 Burton Way, Beverly Hills. (310) 288-3737. Tebh.org.
Temple Judea holds a service and dinner with special holiday treats by the Temple Judea Brotherhood and Women of Temple Judea. A pop-up choir of adults and children performs. The event also features art projects, special musical guests and more. 6:15 p.m. (service), 7:30 p.m. (dinner). $15 (adults), $10 (kids 6-13), $4 (5 and younger). Temple Judea, 5429 Lindley Ave., Tarzana. (818)758-3800. templejudea.com.
COMMUNITY SHABBAT DINNER
Guest scholars Rabbi Irving “Yitz” Greenberg, author and founder of the National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership, and his wife, Blu, a pioneer in Orthodox feminism, visit a community Shabbat dinner. The event is in recognition of the yahrzeit of Rabbi Harold Schulweis. 6 p.m. dinner, 7:30 p.m. dessert and speakers. $42 dinner; registration required. Dessert and speakers are free and open to the community. Valley Beth Shalom, 15739 Ventura Blvd., Encino. (818) 530-4009. vbs.org/scholar-dinner.
SHABBAT HANUKKAH ZIMRAH
University Synagogue holds a soulful and spiritual experience of music, connection and community. Flutist Peter Gordon, percussionist Ava Nahas and oud player Dimitris Mahlis participate. 7:30 p.m. Free. University Synagogue, 11960 Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 472-1255. unisyn.org.
“NEW YORK WATER”
It’s your last chance to see this comedy about Linda and Albert, who have a love-hate relationship with the Big Apple. This screwball romance, which spans years and locales, is written by Sam Borbrick and directed by Howard Teichman. 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 3 p.m. Sunday. Through Dec. 17. Tickets start at $40. Pico Playhouse, 10508 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles. (323) 821-2449. wcjt.org.
Yiddish actor Mike Burstyn’s directorial debut begins a weeklong Oscar-qualifying run at the Laemmle in Encino. The war film, shot on location in Israel, is set during the last hours of the Six-Day War in an abandoned U.N. post in the Sinai. An Israeli soldier and an Egyptian soldier come to realize that in order to survive, they have to help each other. The film is based on a story Burstyn received after the war. Israeli actor Yiftach Klein and Egyptian actor Sammy Sheik, whose real-life fathers fought each other in the actual Six-Day War, co-star. Through Dec. 21. 3:15 p.m., 7:40 p.m. (Q-and-A sessions with Burstyn follow the 7:40 p.m. screenings), 10 p.m. $13 (general), $10 (seniors, children). Laemmle Town Center 5, 17200 Ventura Blvd., Encino. (310) 478-3836. laemmle.com.
SAT DEC 16
A SHABBAT HANUKKAH CELEBRATION
Join Beverly Hills Jewish Community (BHJC) for a program featuring the Chanukah Choral Spectacular, with Levi Coleman and the BHJC A Cappella Choir. Maestro Lior Himelstein conducts. The event includes dreidel games, latkes and glaze-your-own-doughnut activities for kids. Kiddush lunch follows. 9:30 a.m. (Shabbat services), 10:30 a.m. (cantorial performance). Free (RSVP at firstname.lastname@example.org). Beverly Hills Hotel, 9641 Sunset Blvd., Beverly Hills. (310) 276-4246. beverlyhillsjc.org.
DID JEW KNOW? HANUKKAH PUB TRIVIA
American Jewish University’s night of Jewy and not-so-Jewy pub trivia also features complimentary drinks and Hanukkah eats. 7 p.m. $15. Busby’s East, 5364 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles. infinitelight.la/event/did-jew-know-hanukkah-pub-trivia.
Renowned klezmer band the Klezmatics perform a “Happy Joyous Hanukkah” concert at the Valley Performing Arts Center. The evening is a celebration of Yiddish culture at a time of year when candles and family warm the dark nights. The event embraces audiences of all cultures and backgrounds. 8 p.m. $33-$68. Valley Performing Arts Center, 18111 Nordhoff St., Northridge. (818) 677-8800. valleyperformingartscenter.org.
American rap star Nissim Black, born Damian Jamohl Black in Seattle, released two albums before retiring in 2011 to focus on his conversion to Orthodox Judaism. He returned in 2012 under his Hebrew name, Nissim, and began writing from a more religious perspective. This is his first performance in Los Angeles. With opening musical act Erez and comedian Tehran. For ages 18-36. 8:30 p.m. $40 in advance, $50 at the door. Nessah Synagogue, 142 S. Rexford Drive, Beverly Hills. (310) 273-2400. nessah.org.
SUN DEC 17
LEADERS DISCUSS GUN VIOLENCE
Before becoming a United States senator, Chris Murphy served as the congressman representing Newtown, Conn., where 20 children and six educators were murdered at Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012. Having seen the devastating effects of gun violence up close, Murphy emerged from that tragedy as one of Washington’s most outspoken gun violence prevention advocates. Murphy joins Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer, who has been at the forefront of gun control legislation for more than 20 years, in a discussion. Sponsored by Writers Bloc. Noon. Tickets start at $25. Temple Emanuel of Beverly Hills, 8844 Burton Way, Beverly Hills. writersblocpresents.com.
“EDEN ACCORDING TO EVE”
“Eden According to Eve” is a funny, irreverent show about love, loss and the joys of life, featuring Shelly Goldstein, Monica Piper, Lisa Robins, Judith Scarpone and Robert Trebor. Directed by Susan Morgenstern. No one under age 16 admitted. 2 and 5 p.m. $40, includes dessert buffet and Q-and-A. The Braid, 2519 Colorado Ave., No. 102, Santa Monica. (310) 315-1400. Brown Paper Tickets, (800) 838-3006. jewishwomenstheatre.org.
INBAL ABERGIL BOOK LAUNCH
From 2014-17, Inbal Abergil traveled across the United States to photograph and interview 18 American families that lost loved ones in wars spanning from World War II to Vietnam to the ongoing conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq. Abergil, an artist and educator originally from Jerusalem, launches a two-volume book of photographs from that experience called “N.O.K. — Next of Kin,” featuring images that examine the way American families memorialize relatives killed in military conflict, with commentary written by contributors. She holds a master’s in fine arts from Columbia University, and her work has been exhibited internationally in museum and gallery exhibitions. $10 (admission), $45 (book). RSVP recommended at email@example.com. 5 p.m. American Jewish University, 15600 Mulholland Drive, Los Angeles. (310) 440-1246. wcce.aju.edu.
TUE DEC 19
“THE MESHUGA NUTCRACKER!”
Don’t miss a nationwide cinema presentation of the Hanukkah musical, featuring the silly sensibilities of the folklore of Chelm, a Klezmer-influenced orchestration of Tchaikovsky’s “The Nutcracker Suite” and original lyrics that celebrate the Festival of Lights. Over the course of the film, the Chelmniks, residents of a fictional town of fools, tell eight stories, including the triumphant victory of the Maccabees, accounts of perseverance during the Holocaust and the celebration of the first Hanukkah in the new State of Israel. Dancing dreidels, singing sufganiyot and guest stars are thrown in for good measure. 7 p.m. $16 (adults), $13 (children, seniors). Ahrya Fine Arts, 8556 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills; Playhouse 7, 673 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena; Town Center 5, 17200 Ventura Blvd., Encino. (310) 478-3836. laemmle.com.
WED DEC 20
L.A. CLIPPERS JEWISH HERITAGE NIGHT
Celebrate the last night of Hanukkah with NBA action at Staples Center as the Los Angeles Clippers square off against the Phoenix Suns. The Clippers have been struggling this season, so maybe the miracle of the Festival of Lights is just what the team needs to turn things around. A pregame ceremony features a candle lighting and blessings in front of a 10-foot menorah. Attendees receive a complimentary Clippers menorah. 7:30 p.m. From $16. Staples Center, 1111 S. Figueroa St., Los Angeles. nba.com/clippers/promotions/specialevents.
THU DEC 21
SYRIAN TORAH CASE DEDICATION
At Sinai Temple, Drs. Nooshin and Afshine Emrani present the 19th-century artifact Syrian Torah case to the Westwood Conservative congregation. Sinai Temple Max Webb Senior Rabbi David Wolpe delivers commemorative remarks, following evening minyan. 6:15-7 p.m. Free. Sinai Temple, 10400 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 474-1518. sinaitemple.org.
DAVID BROZA AND FRIENDS
Israeli singer and guitarist David Broza and a new set of all-star musicians perform eclectic world music offerings combining Middle Eastern influences with sounds meant to please all ages and backgrounds. Joining Broza are Ali Paris (qanun), Jonathan Levy (guitar), Yuval Lion (drums), Uri Kleinman (bass) and Tali Rubinstein (recorder). 7:30 p.m. $65-$115. The Broad Stage, 1310 11th St., Santa Monica. (310) 434-3200. thebroadstage.org/davidbroza.