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About Town: Week of September 27


Friday, Sept. 28



Papineau MP Justin Trudeau is “in conversation” at the Cummings Jewish Centre for Seniors at 10 a.m. Joyce, 342-1234, ext. 7318.


Saturday, Sept. 29



Alyson Richman, the American author of The Lost Wife, is Leslie Lutsky’s guest on the Jewish Digest on Radio Centre-Ville 102.3FM at 8:30 a.m.


Sunday, Sept. 30



The Segal Centre for Performing Arts opens its season with the classic Broadway musical Guys and Dolls, which continues until Oct. 28. The lavish in-house production is directed by Stratford Festival veteran Diana Leblanc and features a 24-member cast starring Tony-nominated Scott Wentworth as Sky Masterson, the playboy gambler, a role he played at Stratford in 2004, and the versatile Susan Henley as the hapless gangster Nathan Detroit and the frustrated showgirl Adelaide. Stratford veteran Jim White is choreographer, and Nick Burgess is musical director, while Luc Prairie designs  sets recreating the streets of 1940s New York and a glittering Havana. There’ll be a live band on stage.

On Sept. 30, Patrick Hansen,director of opera studies at McGill University and a seasoned stage director, provides background on the play, which is based on Damon  Runyon’s stories, at the Sunday-@-the-Segal lecture at 11 a.m. For the first time, there will be French supertitles on select performances of Guys and Dolls. Tickets, 739-7944.

Wednesday,Oct. 3



Zoe and The Lost Boys, a new “alt-folk” Montreal band. launches the new indie music series at the Segal Centre for Performing Arts at 8 p.m. in the Studio. The series features emerging Canadian artists who defy the usual categorizations. Tickets, 739-7944.


Thursday, Oct. 4



First, the Forests, an exhibition curated by Dan Handel opens at the Canadian Centre for Architecture (CCA) and runs until Jan. 6. Handel, an architect and PhD candidate at  the Technion in Israel, is the recipient of the CCA’s inaugural opportunities for young curators program. He is also the curator of the Israeli pavilion at the current Venice Biennale. First, the Forests explores the connections between natural resources, their processing and design, and traces forestry’s history and differing approaches today. 939-7000.


...Et Cetera...



The Mile End Chavurah, which was formed a couple of years ago by “a handful of scrappy, unaffiliated Jews” and is today “a progressive community committed to creating spaces for Jewish study, culture, prayer and celebration” in that neighbourhood, is on a membership drive. The Chavurah, now a registered charity, is planning “some of the best unorthodox and grassroots programming in Montreal,” says president Layla Dabby, who is completing studies in psychiatry. The Chavurah just held Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur services at the Ukrainian Federation, led by Ari Lev, a rabbinical student at Hebrew College in Boston, and is looking ahead to forming the People’s Yeshiva of Mile End. It’s also planning “X-Mas for Jews” at the Luck Hop Foo restaurant the evening of Dec. 24. info@mileendchavurah.org.



Veteran American filmmaker and photographer William Klein will be honoured at the 41st Festival du nouveau cinéma Oct. 11-28. There’ll be a retrospective of his films and he will give a master class at the Cinématheque québécoise, which also hosts William Klein: l’oeil dissident, an exhibition of his photos, at the Cinémathèque québécoise (on until Nov. 4). Whether it’s a documentary or a feature, about politics or fashion, Klein’s work is known for its ironic tone and innovative technique. One of his best-known films is Muhammad Ali: The Greatest. Born in New York in 1928, Klein has lived for many years in France.



The Ghetto Shul, a now entirely student-run community downtown. The group held “Gefilte Frosh” during McGill University’s Frosh Week to introduce itself to new students, and Shabbat services were held at the historic Bagg Street Shul. Under its new model (the shul previously had its own place on Parc Avenue), members are encouraged to devote at least 18 hours per semester to the group, doing such tasks as cooking or cleaning for Shabbat, administrative work or creating weekly Jewish-themed programming, such as study or musical jam sessions. “The new model gives students a sense of responsibility for their community, and encourages them to develop the skills required to put their own Jewish future into action,” said spokesperson Aryeh Canter. www.ghettoshul.com or email ghettoshul@gmail.com.



Benjamin Sternthal  and Julie Schneiderman, the couple who founded the humanitarian project Kulam (Hebrew for everyone), announced the completion of Kulam’s first project in Cambodia: a sustainable solar electricity system at a school for more than 120 disadvantaged children. Kulam’s Larry Markowitz was an on-site volunteer. Until now, Kulam has focused on Africa, building a small school and building wells in Ethiopia, working in partnership with the Toronto-based Jewish humanitarian organization Ve’ahavta… The Mada Community Centre is looking for volunteers to deliver Sukkot and Simchat Torah meals to the needy in Montreal. Miriam, 342-4969, ext. 227.

Nancy Richler’s novel The Imposter Bride is among the 13 books by Canadian authors on the long list for the 2012 Scotiabank Giller Prize. The jury will release the short list Oct. 1 and the winner of the $50,000 first prize will be announced Oct. 30 at a gala televised on CBC. The Imposter Bride is the about a young Jewish woman who arrives in Montreal after World War II to marry under an assumed name. She suddenly disappears, leaving a baby daughter. After years in Vancouver, Richler is living in her native Montreal…

Adam Stotland, a popular performer on the contemporary Jewish music scene, becomes the new cantor of Shaare Zion Congregation Oct. 1. A member of the klezmer band Shtreiml, Stotland is also known for his own style he calls “Jew grass” (Jewish bluegrass)…

Tal Cantor, a McGill University environmental sciences students, has returned from three months volunteering in Gondar, Ethiopia. She was among 15 young Diaspora and Israeli Jewish adults chosen for the new Project Tikkun Empowerment, sponsored by the Jewish Agency. She worked at the Mother Theresa Health Clinic, where impoverished, gravely ill people receive care.

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