'Oliver!' Musical At Deaf West
Deaf West Theater (DWT) in Los
Ange les, CA recently completed its 25th theatrical production which raised positive reviews in local news papers. Their production
of 'Oliver!', a musical production based on Charles Dickens' 19th century "Oliver Twist", had four Jewish actors: Joshua Ari Soudakoff
in the lead role of 'Oliver', Koli Cutler interpreting for narrator and Fagin roles, the
Josh & Jessica Breslow duet among the children's ensemble - Josh also voiced for Oliver,
Carol Kline as Widow Corney, and Robert Steinberg who de signed the set. All performances
were sold out until end of its run on June 25th. In picture, 'Oliver' (Soudakoff) appears
with Bertha Kurz who saw the play on the last day. Kurz will turn 103 years old on August
Deaf Artists Tour Continues
Brenda Schertz of Boston, MA, guest curator for
"Elements of A Culture: Visions by Deaf Artists" exhibit was on hand when the touring exhibit
opened at the World Peace Bell Exhibit Center in late May in Covington, Kentucky. Held in
conjunction with Kentucky's DeafFestival 2000, the exhibit is a collection of 16 Deaf
artists done in varied styles and media completed between 1972 and 1999. Ms. Schertz is
involved in the study of Deaf art and set up the first full Deaf art exhibit in 1995. The
touring exhibit was in Seattle where more than 3,000 people viewed it in four weeks and for
two weeks, more than 1,000 people viewed it in Boston.
Deaf Temple Celebrates 40th
On Sunday, June 11th, 103 people - ranging from 4 years old to 102 years old - attended
Temple Beth Solomon's (TBS) 40th Anniversary event at a luncheon held at Warner Center
Marriott in Woodland Hills, CA. Gerald "Bummy" Burstein emceed the event with Jewish jokes.
TBS President Joe Slotnick presented awards to recipients as well as a honorary TBS life
membership which was presented to TBS' former Rabbi, Alan Henkin. Rabbi Henkin
was recently named as the Regional Director of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations -
Pacific Southwest Region. He had been TBS' Rabbi from 1980 to 1990. Hersh Man of the Year
Award went to Sam Kadin, Hersh Woman of the Year to Elaine Aikins, President's Award to
Marion Intrator, Mordechai Award to Ezra Levy, and Lifetime Honorary Membership was given
to Jean Greenberg.
Miami Temple To Provide ASL Classes
Temple Israel of Greater Miami, FL
is sponsoring a class in basic American Sign Language for 13 weeks starting on June 13th.
Participants will learn about the Deaf culture and sign language. More than 200 signs will
be taught. Students will also attend an event for deaf people and learn to interpret songs
and prayers in sign language. Temple Israel is located at 137 NE 19th St., Miami. Their
telephone number is 305-573-5900.
Marlee Matlin Appears Again In A Different Legal Setting
Marlee Matlin appeared as a guest on the ABC-TV's "The Practice" television scene on Sunday
night May 21 st. This episode featured Marlee as an accused killer. Former New York City
area interpreter student Camryn Manheim, who is Jewish, is a regular on this show as
Ellenor, one of the lawyers on the program.
Open House For Jewish Deaf Children In New Rochelle, N.Y.
Beth El Synagogue in New Rochelle, NY is starting a program to serve Jewish
Deaf children and youth, from ages 8 -18. The program components may include education,
recreation, Bar/Bat Mitzvah preparation, and more. For more information, call Jonathan
Meyer 914-664-5581 VOICE, 914-699-6954 FAX, or email to email@example.com.
Workshop for Deaf, Deaf-Blind And ASL Interpreters
The Jewish Deaf Resource Center, Inc.
(JDRC) sponsored a workshop to study and learn together Friday evening Shabbat psalms in ASL This was co-facilitated by Marla Berkowitz and Molly Wilson, CI on Sunday, June 11th at Columbia
University in New York City.
This was co-sponsored by the Shefa Fund, CUNY Con sortium
Interpreter Education Project funded by the U.S. Department of Education, and Columbia
University Teacher's College.
Honors For Mike Weinstock
Deaf Digest reports that Mike
Weinstock, boys' basket ball coach at Model Secondary School for the Deaf in Washington,
D.C. (Silent News Boys' Basketball Team of the Year) was chosen as ESPN Coach of the Month. Considering there are thousands of high schools
across the nation, it was a tremendous accomplishment.
Columbus Judaic Interpreting Conference
The first National Conference on Deaf Participation and Interpreting in Judaic
Settings, will be held in Columbus, Ohio on July 26-28. For further information, E-mail
Alisa Warmund-Shkolnik at firstname.lastname@example.org or write to: Midwest Center on Jewish Deaf
Resources, 445 Eastmoor Blvd, Columbus, Ohio 43209.
Recognition For Dawn Skwersky
Vault.com's Women & Business May 16th on-line site featured Dawn
Skwersky, a software application engineer. Dawn was interviewed about her job and how she succeeded in her
career pursuits despite her deafness. Dawn who is also a film maker, has a bachelor's
degree in anthropology and hopes to make a film on deaf anthropology.
Jackie Roth To Appear In "Twelfth Night"
Sign Language performances are planned from September 21st to
October 1st Amaryllis Theater in Philadelphia, PA. Deaf and hearing actors (Jackie Roth,
Peter Cook, Monique Holt, Cappy Rush, and Adrian Blue) will per form in "Twelfth Night"
directed by Peter Novak. The performances will be held at Prince Music Theater, Chest nut
Street at Broad (between Broad and 15th on Chest nut), Philadelphia, PA. For information,
contact Creative Access at 215/627-9271 TTY 215/627-9571 FAX or email@example.com or look
in their website at http://www.yale.edu/asl12night/
Deaf Superintendent At New Mexico School
Ronald J. Stern, a 1973 graduate from Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C., has
been named Superintendent of the New Mexico School for the Deaf in Santa Fe, NM. He has
been involved with the education of deaf students for 25 years, most recently as director
of Instruction for ten years at the California School for the Deaf in Fremont, CA. He was
born in Philadelphia and raised in New York City. He holds a master's degree in special
education and education of the deaf and hard of hearing from California State University,
Northridge, and is pursuing a Ph.D. in educational leadership from the Union
Institute in Cincinnati. The Sacramento Bee quotes, "Among Stern's challenges will be
confronting whether the school should be remodeled, rebuilt or moved to Albuquerque".
Kesher Program Director Susan Gottesman seeks ASL interpreters for
Camp Ramah which is located in north east PA. She states that they are the only camping
experience for the Jewish Deaf community and are seeking interpreters. "We have a
wonderful staff of hearing and deaf young and older adults. In addition, because we function within a hearing camp, we need ASL interpreters to work with us as well. For both
programs, interpreting includes working with program participants and staff, as well as
hearing Ramah staff people. Settings range from pool-side and gymnasium to staff meetings
and every thing in between at camp. Everyone is very friendly and team work is a MUST. It's
a fun place to be for a week or two - nice facilities and beautiful surroundings." There
are two sessions: Kesher Family Camp - for Jewish fami lies with Deaf members, June 22 -
July 2, and Kesher Camper Program for Deaf campers ages 10 -14, July 7 19th. Susan can be
contacted at RamahKesher@aol.com
Deaf Judaism Program Participant Dies
Jewish Telegraphic Agency writer Brian Seidman reported reported on June 27th that Joseph Ferraro, on a ten-day trip to Israel to explore his Jewish heritage, died within two hours after arriving at
Newark International Airport on his return from Israel. Ferraro, a film student at the
Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) was 20 years old and had been on the 'Birthright
Israel program' to explore his Jewish heritage. There were several Deaf students on the
trip and Ferraro, who knew sign language, "helped with bridging the two groups. I couldn't
believe at the end of the trip how well they were mixing. Joe was part of the reason this
happened", says trip adviser and Rochester Institute professor Ellie
Rosenfield. It was discovered that the flu-like symptoms Ferraro had was bacterial meningitis. The Rochester
News reports that New Jersey health officials advised 13 other passengers on Ferraro's
flight to take antibiotic injections as a safety precaution. During Ferraro's stay in
Israel, he wore tallit and tefillin in a personal Bar Mitzvah ceremony at the Western Wall.
He told his Birthright group that he was moved by thoughts of his grandmother as he stood
there. It was the second trip organized by the Birthright program which is funded by Jewish
philanthropists Charles Bronfman and Michael Steinhardt. Contributions may be made to the
Joseph T. Ferraro Memorial Fund, c/o 268 Scholfield Road, Rochester, NY 14617.
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