Award-winning film Thou Shalt Not Hate, Wed. October 13, 7:30pm
Pulitzer prize-winner Michael Chabon, Tues. October 19, 7:30pm
Cantor Daniel Benlolo’s tribute to Jewish composers, Sun. Oct. 24, 7:00pm
The Jewish Public Library (JPL) is offering three inspiring evenings before heading into Jewish Book Month’s flurry of activities. The awarded Italian film, Thou Shalt Not Hate by Mauro Mancini screens on Wednesday, October 13; Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist, essayist and screenwriter Michael Chabon is live online in conversation with Gary Barwin on Tuesday, October 19; and on Sunday, October 24 talented Sephardi Cantor Daniel Benlolo performs the concert, A Glimmer of Light –A tribute to Jewish composers. These special, one-time events will be presented on Zoom with a Q&A discussion after each one. Jewish Book Month runs from October 26 to November 30 and features eleven diverse, multilingual events. Highlights include keynote speakers David Grossman, Colum McCann, Steven Pinker and Valérie Zenatti. JPL sponsored the first comprehensive book exhibit in the Montreal Jewish community in 1944.
In Thou Shalt Not Hate (Italian with English subtitles), Simone, a Jewish surgeon and son of a Holocaust survivor, makes a split-second decision at the scene of a hit-and-run accident involving a neo-Nazi. Racked with guilt, the anguished doctor seeks to learn more about the victim’s family, setting in motion a series of events that further complicate his life as he seeks to deal with his own emotional turmoil. Thou Shalt Not Hate is a gripping drama that plays like a thriller, posing challenging and profound questions about the nature of redemption. Roxana Brauns, JPL Director of Cultural Programming Services, wanted to share the powerful experience of this film, “We were taken by the message of Mancini’s work which serves as a reminder that, whether innocent or guilty, everyone has value and needs a chance at redemption,” she said. Award-winning actor Alessandro Gassmann is mesmerizing as Simone in this masterpiece by Mauro Mancini. The lauded film was in the Official Selection category at the Philadelphia Jewish Film Festival, Gassmann won Best Actor at the Venice International Film Festival, and the film garnered the Sorriso Diverso Venezia Award for Best Italian Film. The film will be introduced by Rabbi Leigh Lerner, Rabbi Emeritus, Temple Emanu-El-Beth Sholom. Thou Shalt Not Hate is presented by the Janie Cooper Endowment of the JPL and the Phillip and Gertrude Batist Endowment Fund.
Michael Chabon is the accomplished author of Moonglow and The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, among many others. He will talk about a wide variety of topics including the art and craft of writing and storytelling and the tradition of Jewish fiction. Many of his books have an element of the fantastical. Notable awards for Chabon include the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, National Book Critics Circle, Hugo, Nebula, Los Angeles Times Book Prize, the PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction, and the National Jewish Book Award, among many others in a career spanning more than 30 years. Known for his deep empathy for the human predicament, he is also one of the creators, writers and producers for the TV series Star Trek: Picard. Chabon will be in conversation with Gary Barwin, a writer, composer, musician, and multidisciplinary artist who has published 25 books of fiction, poetry and numerous chapbooks. His national bestselling novel Yiddish for Pirates won the Stephen Leacock Medal for Humour and the Canadian Jewish Literary Award. The evening is presented by the Mary & Sheila Heimlich Cultural Endowment.
To start the Jewish New Year on a musical note, talented Sephardi Cantor Daniel Benlolo invites people to follow him on a journey of rediscovery of some of the Jewish singers and composers who inspired him in this uplifting concert, A Glimmer of Light – A tribute to Jewish composers. “We are delighted to offer this concert,” said Brauns, “audiences are drawn to Benlolo’s beautiful voice and charismatic personality.” Surrounded by musician friends, Benlolo will perform tunes from Leonard Cohen, Neil Diamond, Bob Dylan, Samy Elmaghribi, Billy Joel, Carole King, Enrico Macias, Simon and Garfunkel, Theodore Bikel, and Naomi Shemer. Benlolo has received a number of accolades including the Governor General Caring Canadian Award. The concert is co-organized by the Jewish Public Library and the Spanish & Portuguese Synagogue.
Jewish Public Library presents three stirring Zoom events
Thou Shalt Not Hate, Wed. Oct. 13, 7:30pm
Michael Chabon in conversation with Gary Barwin, Tues, Oct. 19, 7:30 pm
Daniel Benlolo concert, A Glimmer of Light –A tribute to Jewish composers, Sun. Oct. 24, 7:00pm
Q&A discussion after each event
Please check out additional excellent programming