Segregation and Celebration…and Cornerstones

Segregation and Celebration.

If you haven’t seen the news lately, just google Beit Shemesh or click here, or here or here.

In the midst of the CELEBRATION at the URJ Biennial, I added a special song to my set list, one I wrote with Fran Immerman, originally about the Conversion Bill, but more generally about how ALL voices are represented in Israel – particularly those of women.  Particular sects of Charedi (ultra religious) men are creating volatile and generally uncomfortable situations by segregating women, protesting girls getting an education in school and making women walk across the street from men or sit in the back of the bus.

The song’s working title is called “Shma Yisrael” – and joining me onstage with voices rising in solidarity were Julie Silver, Peri Smilow, Chana Rothman and Shira Kline.  

We are currently in the studio recording it with producer Glenn Grossman hopefully launching a video project to show both outrage to the government of Israel and to this Haredi sect as well as solidarity for the people of Israel who are as outraged as we are.

And now…as the calendar moves, so do we all.

I’m off to play with other experiential educators planning the 2012 CORNERSTONE FELLOWSHIP of the Foundation for Jewish Camp ,  A program I created many years ago and have returned to serve as an advisor!  It’s one of the most rewarding and downright fun times of my year!

Just a short week later, I’ll be off to Alaska to serve the Alaskan-Anchorage-based Jewish community as their Artist/Educator in residence at their annual community retreat.

In the midst of all of this, we’re BOOKING THE SUMMER LIKE CRAZY and well into the Fall of 2012 – so if you know a community interested in awesome Jewish Rock, alternative/musical/spiritual worship experiences, Jewish rock programming, girls-self-esteem development and anti-bullying programming, please do connect us to them.

In the meantime, have a great January, happy 2012 and educate yourself about the gender-segregation issues in Israel.  Your voice counts!