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Have you heard the one about the son of an ex-nun who converts to Judaism, moves to Israel, starts dressing like a Hasid - and becomes one of Israel’s premiere comedians?

Circumcise Me” Presents a Playful Face of Orthodoxy

Long beards. Solemn, studious faces. Stern, serious men and modest women. That’s the image many people have of Orthodoxy.

This prim and proper image undergoes an adjustment on Sunday, June 5 at the Boulder Jewish Community Center with an art show and film presenting a more playful face of Orthodoxy.

The evening begins at 6:00 pm with the opening of an art show, “I’ve Never Seen so Many Flying Tzitzis,” featuring photography by Barry Meriash. Meriasch presents the spirit of Chasidic life with the intention of seeing beyond the strange appearance and behavior to the rich world of joy that has been refined in the fire of painful and dark times.

There will be a free kosher wine and cheese reception and an opportunity to meet the artist.

The evening continues at 7:00 pm with a comedy-night-style presentation of “Circumcise Me: The Comedy of Yisrael Campbell.” An intimate look at the “Matisyahu of comedy,” this one-hour documentary combines Campbell’s hilarious stand-up routine with the wild life story that inspires his jokes.

He’s just your average Irish, Italian Catholic kid from Philly, Comic Actor, Sober Alcoholic, Recovering Drug Addict, Husband, Father, Reform, Conservative, Unorthodox, Orthodox Jew.

His name is Yisrael Campbell, (the artist formerly known as Christopher), and this is his story – a spiritual journey stretching across four decades, two continents, and three circumcisions. Poignant, provocative, and powerfully witty, “Circumcise Me” is the true – and truly unforgettable – story of a man who was born to be funny. The Jewish part came later.

More than just a barrel of laughs, “Circumcise Me” is one man’s journey of self-discovery.

Tickets are $10 at the door and include kosher refreshments. Following the film, Rabbi Gavriel Goldfeder will lead a discussion. The event is co-sponsored by Aish Kodesh.

About Kathryn Bernheimer

Kathryn Bernheimer
Director of Menorah: Arts, Culture and Education at the Boulder JCC. The former film and theater critic for the Boulder Daily Camera, Kathryn is the author of "The Fifty Greatest Jewish Movies" and "The Fifty Funniest Films of All Time."

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