Archive for the ‘This You'll Want To See’ Category

Israeli Culture Explosion Snuffed Out by Real Blasts

July 10, 2014

This piece first appeared on The Arty Semite blog at the Forward.

Maybe Next Year: Contact Point, which in previous years attracted 5,000 attendees, has been postponed. Photo Credit: Barak Aharon

Maybe Next Year: Contact Point, which in previous years attracted 5,000 attendees, has been postponed. Photo Credit: Barak Aharon

JERUSALEM – Usually, there is an explosion of culture in Jerusalem in the summer. But with Hamas striking Israel with hundreds of rockets and missiles daily, popular arts events in the country’s capital have had to be cancelled or postponed.

When the current war with Hamas broke out early Tuesday, Jerusalemites were not particularly fearful of rockets landing in their city. While one or two sirens went off in Jerusalem during Operation Pillar of Defense in late 2012, the capital was largely spared from missile fire. However, when the wailing siren sounded and was followed by three explosions on Tuesday night, residents realized that things may actually be different this time.

Within minutes of the attack on Jerusalem, authorities ordered that the concert by Israeli rocker Berry Sakharof taking place that evening at the outdoor Sultan’s Pool venue just outside the walls of the Old City be stopped and its 6,000 attendees immediately evacuated.

Large outdoor gatherings, which are traditional during cool Jerusalem summer evenings, are problematic security-wise at a time like this. People have at most a minute and a half to reach shelter when a air raid siren goes off, making it difficult — if not impossible — to hold such events safely.

Click here to read more.

© 2014 Renee Ghert-Zand. All rights reserved.

DKNY Wants To Dress You For Ramadan

July 10, 2014

This piece first appeared in The Times of Israel.

Jewish designer Donna Karen's DKNY label has a special line for Ramadan. (DKNY Lookbook screenshot)

Jewish designer Donna Karen’s DKNY label has a special line for Ramadan. (DKNY Lookbook screenshot)

Muslim women may be fasting this month for Ramadan, but that doesn’t mean they can’t look good doing it. DKNY, the fashion label founded by Jewish designer Donna Karan, has a new Ramadan Summer 2014 line aimed mainly at Middle Eastern modest fashionistas.

However, following the European Court of Human Rights upholding of France’s ban on the burqa and niqab last week, observant Muslim women in that country might want to also check out these glam, yet body-covering, looks.

Yalda Golsharifi, the fashion editor at the Kuwaiti Styles Magazine, and Tamara Al Gabbani, a fashion designer in Dubai, styled this collection that “channels [a woman’s] inner silver-screen siren and make[s] a scene with sweeping silhouettes, bold and artful prints and stunning fabrics.”

Click here to read more.

© 2014 Renee Ghert-Zand. All rights reserved.

This Jewish Grandmother Knows a Trick or Two

June 12, 2014

This article was first published in The Times of Israel.

Sheila Vogel-Coupe took up escorting four years ago at age 81. (Courtesy)

Sheila Vogel-Coupe took up escorting four years ago at age 81. (Courtesy)

Most Jewish grandmothers’ tastes run to brisket, gefilte fish and kugel. Not Sheila Vogel-Coupe: Her appetite is for sex. Vogel-Coupe, 85, is believed to be Britain’s oldest working prostitute, or “escort,” as she prefers to be called.

The twice-widowed Vogel-Coupe, who became a sex worker four years ago at the age of 81, is featured in the television documentary, “My Granny the Escort,” which premiered on May 29 on Britian’s Channel 4. She appears in the film along with two other “mature escorts” over the age of 60. However, because of Vogel-Coupe’s extremely advanced age and her unapologetic defense of her chosen profession, she, in particular, has emerged as an object of fascination in the global media.

“I’m not ashamed to say I like sex,” she tells The Times of Israel by phone.

Click here to read more and watch the trailer.

© 2014 Renee Ghert-Zand. All rights reserved.


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