Sun Dec 15 2019


7:30 pm - 9:00 pm



Other Locations

East Bay

Other Locations

East Bay

Joel Ben Izzy shares stories of Chelm, with Saul Goodman’s Klezmer Band

Ashkenaz Music & Dance Community Center

Join storyteller Joel ben Izzy Saul Goodman’s Band for a mashup of music and stories, including Chanukkah tales from Chelm, the mythical Jewish village of fools, located somewhere on the road from Warsaw to Chotzenplotz. Coming just a week before the choliday, it’s a great way to ignite the spirit of lights and laughter with tales and tunes. Great for families, kids age five and up.

About Joel ben Izzy: It was over thirty-five years ago that Joel ben Izzy set off to travel the globe, gathering and telling stories everywhere from Tel Aviv to Tokyo, Rome to Rwanda, and Paris to Petaluma – though he has made a point never to tell stories in Chotzenplotz, and recommends you do the same.

Over the years he’s produced six award winning recordings of his stories and his written two books. His memoir, The Beggar King and the Secret of Happiness (Algonquin, 2003) recounts an amazing journey, woven together with stories from his travel. Now in its fifth printing and 18 languages, it is currently in development as a musical. Dreidels on the Brain (Dial Books, 2016) is, as you might have guessed, a Kchannukkah title. In fact, it’s a fictionalized-coming-of-age Hanukkah memoir which received Sydney Taylor honors, was chosen as a finalist for the National Jewish Book award, and holds the world record for the most ways to spell Khaanukkaah. Both Joel’s books and CDs will be available at Ashkenaz. In addition to his storytelling, books and CDs, Joel is one of the nation’s leading story consultants.

While the stories Joel tells come from all over the world, his favorite to tell are the Jewish folktales he’ll be sharing with us at Ashkenaz, here in his home town of Berkeley. For more info on Joel, see

Saul Goodman’s Klezmer Band comes from a musical tradition tracing back to the old world shtetl of Szrensk. Incorporating post-immigrant sounds rooted in klezmer, Saul Goodman’s music moves the spirit and the dance.

Since 2012 the band has performed klezmer music for weddings, bar and bat mitzvah parties, and all manner of celebrations around the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond. The band’s sound draws from modern cosmopolitan surroundings while being firmly rooted in traditional Jewish folk music tracing centuries back from Eastern Europe. Saul Goodman’s Klezmer Band brings people together and lifts their spirits and energies.

For this show, we’ll feature:

Mike Perlmutter – clarinet, bass clarinet

Dave Rosenfeld – mandolin, violin

Ilana Sherer – violin

Dan Cantrell – accordion

Jonathan Simon – xylophone, percussion, and foley

Aaron Kierbal – drums

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