2011 Conference
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Taste of Limmud NY
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Chana Rothman


Tinges of reggae, worldbeat, folk, and hip-hop infuse Chana Rothman's Hebrew-English tunes with rhythm and positive vibes. Chana's music has earned a growing pile of accolades: New York Times called her River-to-River show "worth checking out" and The Jewish Week gave her debut cd, We Can Rise (Oyhoo Records), four stars. Popsyndicate.com calls her music "Bob Marley meets Edie Brickell." Chana works with Storahtelling and independently in camps, synagogues, churches across the country bringing relevant social commentary & empowerment through a musical lense. She recently returned from several community-based tours: in South Africa, combining justice work in townships with live performances, and in Berlin, presenting and performing for progressive European Jews from across the continent. Chana's most recent accomplishment is the birth of her son, Izzy, and her entry into momhood. Her music is on iTunes, Amazon.com, last.fm and more. Stay tuned for her new album, produced by C Lanzbom, "Beautiful Land," a mix of African worldbeat, acoustic folk, and groove.

How A Non-Amharic Anthem Changed My Life

Building Community With 3-Part Songs

Even though the wildly popular participatory song "Kum Kum Lei Lei" is not, as I was told, an anthem that Ethiopian Jewish people sang while being airlifted to Israel, it has still played a tremendous role in creating meaningful memories at camps across the country. After I taught this song at the Union for Reform Judaism's Kutz Camp, it spread like wildfire through summer camps and youth groups because of the catchy yet complex interplay between the parts. Songs with three parts have a magical way of bonding groups of all sizes. In short, 3-part songs rock! We shall intersperse songs with stories, and you will walk away with an arsenal of catchy, group-building tunes. Warning—these songs may get stuck in your head for a long while. And then, you will have to spread them!

Social Justice Songs

Arts & Performance, Interactive, Social Justice

In the words of Woody Guthrie: "A folk song is what's wrong and how to fix it, or it could be who's hungry and where their mouth is, or who's out of work and where the job is, or who's broke and where the money is, or who's carrying a gun and where the peace is." Bring your favorite songs, instruments, and most of all, your voice! Jewish tunes are especially welcome. Song sheets will be provided.

Lights Ignite Change in Concert

Sarah Aroeste, Naomi Less, Chana Rothman

Arts & Performance

Lights Ignite Change, a traveling concert fronted by women - and a total paradigm shift in what music can accomplish - brightens up the night at Limmud NY. Lights Ignite Change works with communities around the country and globe to produce concerts that serve a higher purpose: granting exposure to grassroots community initiatives working towards social justice; igniting people’s interest in service for change by connecting them with engaged activists in their communities; providing meaningful, quality live music; and highlighting a platform for local female musicians. Activate your ears, heart, soul and hands at this truly unique showcase of music for a purpose!

Songwriters' Circle

Naomi Less, Chana Rothman

Arts & Performance, Interactive

Jewish Chick Rocker Naomi Less and Roots-Reggae performer Chana Rothman, host a Songwriting Circle. Participants will share their work to a nurturing circle of chesed (loving kindness). Chana and Naomi encourage songwriters to hear their work out loud, to share it with a caring human soundboard, and to learn from the reflective mirror the listeners provide. Take a risk in a safe environment. Please, bring your song (no matter how far along it is) and your own instrument if you use one. (This session is for any songwriters, whether novice or experienced.)


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