On Saturday, April 18 The University of Florida (UF) Choral Union, representing the UF School of Music's Concert Choir and the Gainesville Civic Chorus Master Chorale, presented Protest Requiem. Joined by the UF Symphony Orchestra and numerous guest soloists, Protest Requiem features Verdi's Reguiem, performed in remembrance of the Holocaust, and to honor the members of the chorus and orchestra in the Theresienstadt ghetto. JCNCF is proud to be one of the community partners sponsoring the Protest Requiem.
Eran Singer, Arab affairs correspondent for Israel Public Radio's Reshet Bet Channel, spoke at Temple Shir Shalom (3855 NW 8th Ave, Gainesville, FL 32605) on Thursday, April 23. Singer served in the Israeli Intelligence Corps and later worked at the Israeli Broadcasting Authority, reporting on domestic Arab affairs. Later, he became a news editor for Kol Israel Radio Channel.
This year's Yom HaShoah event was somewhat of a departure from prior gatherings, with a special presentation made possible by a partnership between the Jewish Council and the Goldring-Woldenberg Institue of Southern Jewish Life. The Mitzvah Project, a one-man play, is a remarkable combination of theater, history lesson and conversation in which actor and child of a survivor, Roger Grunwald, explores one of the most shocking aspects of the Jewish experience during the Second World War - Jewish soldiers in Hitler's army.
Sponsorship for this event was provided, in part, by: Dr. Abe Goldman & Dr. Judy Breiner, Dr. Lynne & Dr. Robert Holt, Dr. Herb and Dr. Barbara Oberlander and Dr. Ken Wald & Dr. Robin West
March 22 through March 31 the Hippodrome hosted 12 films as a part of the Fifth Annual Gainesville Jewish Film Festival. Nearly 500 people attended these films. Click the button below to view the line up of films that were screened and the sponsors who made it all happen.
On Sunday, March 1, PJ Library Gainesville families went on an adventure with Captain Character. This "journey" was filled with magic, jokes and important lessons from Purim.
Kids left with ballon animals and tummies filled with cotton candy. Click here to view photos from the event
Every year JCNCF sponsors and coordinates a wide range of activities and celebrations for the community.
Check out this page to learn about the many current and upcoming events. We hope to see you often!
Outwitting History, a Talk with Aaron Lansky
Sunday, April, 7 at 4 pm
Oak Hammock, The Oak Room
When Aaron Lansky was a graduate student in Montreal in the late 1970s, he realized that large numbers of Yiddish books were being discarded by a generation who could no longer read the language. So, in the summer of 1980, he took a two-year leave of absence, and issuing a public appeal for unwanted and discarded Yiddish books, he set out to find and rescue as many as possible. At the time, scholars believed just 70,000 volumes were still extant and recoverable. Lansky, together with a handful of young colleagues, recovered that number in six months and went on to collect more than a million volumes. Their work has been described as “one of the greatest cultural rescue efforts in Jewish history.” Lansky went on to found the Yiddish Book Center to preserve Yiddish books and to promote Yiddish culture. Today, the Center is spearheading a major translation project so that those of us who don’t read Yiddish can still enjoy the wonderful literature.
A native of New Bedford, Massachusetts, Lansky holds a BA in modern Jewish history from Hampshire College, an MA in East European Jewish studies from McGill University, and honorary doctorates from Amherst College, the State University of New York, and Hebrew Union College. In 1989, he was awarded a “genius grant” from the MacArthur Foundation, and in 2005, his bestselling book, Outwitting History: The Amazing Adventures of a Man Who Rescued a Million Yiddish Books, won the Massachusetts Book Award in Nonfiction.
Join us at Oak Hammock on Sunday, April 7, at 4 pm to hear Aaron Lansky relate his incredible story: the story of how one man effectively saved the Yiddish language. Aaron will also present a talk in the Judaica Suite at the University of Florida, on Monday, April 8, at 12:30 pm on the subject of the new frontiers in Yiddish translation, including Yiddish publications from Latin America. Both of these talks are free and open to the community, and are made possible by the Isser and Rae Price Library of Judaica, Karen Miller, Esquire, and the Jewish Council of North Central Florida.
The Jewish Council is partnering with the Isser and Rae Price Library of Judaica to offer a fascinating talk by Professor Tudor Parfitt (SOAS, FIU), the leading expert on the history of Jews in Africa, and Remy Ilona, his student and a member of the community of Igbo Jews. The talk will offer two different perspectives on the origins of Igbo Jewish ancestry and it will shed light on the complexity of African Jewish history. Igbo Jews, like Ilona, regard themselves as descendants of the ancient tribes of Israel and can offer up evidence of ancient practices. Yet, in his recent book Black Jews in Africa and the Americas, Parfitt shows how Africans were often labelled as Israelites by colonialists, travelers, and missionaries in an attempt to explain and understand the strange people they encountered on the colonial frontier. This identity was then adopted by Africans who offered up common traditional practices as proof of a racial relationship to the Jews.