Festival of Books & Arts

Oct 23-Nov 13, 2017

The JCC’s 19th annual Ann Katz Festival of Books & Arts is a three-week festival featuring local, national and international authors, films and filmmakers, performing artists and fine artists. This year’s Festival of Books and Arts is October 23 through November 13, 2017. The highlight of this year’s festival is an appearance by Chuck Todd, NBC News political director, moderator and managing editor of Meet the Press, the flagship Sunday morning public affairs program and the longest-running broadcast in television history.  

Presenting: A Conversation with Chuck Todd

Wed, Oct 25 | 7 pm | $25

Chuck Todd is NBC News political director, moderator and managing editor of Meet the Press, the flagship Sunday morning public affairs program and the longest-running broadcast in television history. Todd was chief White House correspondent for NBC, becoming political director in March 2007. A self-described political junkie, he has earned a reputation as one of the most passionate journalists and sharpest analysts in America, named the “Most Powerful Journalist in Washington” (GQ, 2012).

2017 Events

Event | A Conversation with Chuck Todd

Wed, Oct 25 | 7 pm | $25

Wed, Oct 25 | 7 pm | $25

Chuck Todd is NBC News political director, moderator and managing editor of Meet the Press, the flagship Sunday morning public affairs program and the longest-running broadcast in television history. Todd was chief White House correspondent for NBC, becoming political director in March 2007. A self-described political junkie, he has earned a reputation as one of the most passionate journalists and sharpest analysts in America, named the “Most Powerful Journalist in Washington” (GQ, 2012).

Tickets

Sponsored by National Bank of Indianapolis.

Author | Stephen Tobolowsky, author of My Adventures with God

Mon, Oct 23 | 7 pm | $10

Mon, Oct 23 | 7 pm | $10

Quintessential character actor, Stephen Tobolowsky has appeared in more than 100 movies and 200 television shows including unforgettable roles in Silicon Valley, Mississippi Burning, Glee and Groundhog Day (Ned Ryerson). He is also a consummate storyteller – warm, funny and profound.

Tickets

Sponsored by Indianapolis Hebrew Congregation.

Event | Mickey’s Corner with Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett

Thu, Oct 26 | 7 pm | $10

Thu, Oct 26 | 7 pm | $10

The Indianapolis Business Journal’s Mickey Maurer reprises the Emmy Award-winning Mickey’s Corner with special guest, Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett. Sponsored by National Bank of Indianapolis, Israel Bonds, Congregation Beth-El Zedeck and Congregation Beth Shalom.

Tickets

Films/Visual Arts | FILM: Presenting Princess Shaw

Sat, Oct 28 | 8 pm | $10

Sat, Oct 28 | 8 pm | $10

The true story of Samantha Montgomery who cares for the elderly in one of New Orleans’ toughest neighborhoods by day and writes and sings songs as Princess Shaw on YouTube by night. She is discovered on the other side of the world by Ophir Kutiel, a composer, musician and pioneering video artist known as Kutiman who creates video mash ups of amateur YouTube performers. Two strangers, almost 7,000 miles apart, begin to build a song that becomes a viral sensation of generosity, compassion and the fight of a talented singer never to give up on her dreams. Includes adult content and graphic language. A Unity Project event. The mission of The Unity Project is to build respect and understanding between various communities, especially the black and Jewish communities, through dialogue and the arts. Partners include the JCC, The Indianapolis Urban League, the Efroymson Family Fund, the Jewish Community Relations Council and Starfish Initiative.

Check out the trailer here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nMXGIch82ZU

Tickets

Sponsored by Dialogue Today.

Event | Super Hero Palooza

Sun, Oct 29 | 2-4 pm | FREE

Sun, Oct 29 | 2-4 pm | FREE

A family celebration for adults and kids of all ages. Create your own super-powers, come in costume, enjoy our superhero photo booth, read super hero books and so much more. This event is in partnership with Barnes & Noble.

Tickets

Author | Jonathan Eig, author of Ali: A Life

Wed, Nov 1 | 7 pm | $10

Wed, Nov 1 | 7 pm | $10

The definitive biography of an American icon, from a New York Times best-selling author with unique access to Ali’s inner circle. Described by Ken Burns as a “one of America’s master storyteller,” Eig presents a story about race, about a brutal sport, and about a fascinating man who went from one of the most despised men in America to one of the most beloved.

Tickets

Sponsored by Mary L. Benedict Critical Issues Seminar, IUPUI.

Films/Visual Arts | Art Gallery Opening Reception featuring work by Cindy Wingo

Thu, Nov 2 | 5:30-7 pm | FREE

Thu, Nov 2 | 5:30-7 pm | FREE

Join us in the JCC Art Gallery to meet Cindy Wingo and enjoy light refreshments. Wingo trained as a Graphic Designer and Artist. As her career evolved, she began expressing herself through abstraction and never looked back. She found it to be a sanctuary in which she could communicate so many things without exposing herself completely. Each painting tells a story, so she refers to each as an Abstract Narrative.

Painting has allowed her to work through some of the weighted questions in life, both politically and personally. She doesn’t believe that artists choose art; it is art that chooses them.  Both a blessing and a curse, she would be lost without it. It’s her life force, her footprint: her soul’s private podium.  She hopes to inspire and communicate to others thru her work. The work created for Imagine was inspired by the content from this year’s Ann Katz Festival of Books & Arts.

Tickets

Performing Arts | The Juniper Tree

Sat, Nov 4 | 8 pm | $15

Sat, Nov 4 | 8 pm | $15

This one-woman play performed by Susan Bennett and written by Timothy Taylor is a moving and compelling story delving into the secret pain that is often just under the surface of family relationships. The story is set in Indianapolis, 1968. Three generations of women in a Jewish-American family look back on the first decades of the twentieth century, and struggle with the signs and ghosts of the past. Racism, prejudice, anger and fear have threatened to destroy them, but bonds can never be broken. The Juniper Tree premiered at IndyFringe Festival 2016. Following the play, the audience is invited to join in a discussion with Bennett and Taylor.

Tickets

Sponsored by Ellen and Richard Shevitz.

Performing Arts | Spirit and Place-What If? The Power of Imagination

Sun, Nov 5 | 2 pm | FREE

Sun, Nov 5 | 2 pm | FREE

A Spirit and Place event in partnership with the JCC, Dance Kaleidoscope, Indiana Writers Center, Indiana Historical Society and Jewish Family Services. An afternoon of dance, drama, writing and creativity based on the huge question:  “What IF?” Sponsored by the Penrod Society.

Tickets

Sponsored by The Penrod Society and Dr. Mary Beckwith.

Author | Anna Solomon, author of Leaving Lucy Pear

Mon, Nov 6 | 7 pm | $18 book and program, $10 program only

Mon, Nov 6 | 7 pm | $18 book and program, $10 program only

A Community Reads event

Heading the list of “six new paperbacks to read,” Leaving Lucy Pear is a moving novel about 18-year-old, unmarried, Radcliffe-bound Beatrice who leaves her newborn daughter in her uncle’s pear grove, hoping that the thieves who often steal fruit will take the child, too. Years later, in Massachusetts in the throes of Prohibition, Beatrice is restless, stalled and grieving, when the woman who adopted the baby begins working for Beatrice’s uncle, and the families’ fates are entwined yet again. Community Reads offers special pricing for book clubs to encourage them to read the book prior to the author’s appearance for a deeper discussion of the book and its themes.

Tickets

Sponsored by Congregation Shaarey Tefilla and Hadassah.

Author | Belly Laughs A Cooking Demonstration/Tasting and Comedy Event

Tue, Nov 7 | 7:30 pm | $15

Tue, Nov 7 | 7:30 pm | $15

Einat Admony, a Tel Aviv native, James Beard finalist and the owner of several highly regarded restaurants in New York City will be cooking items on stage, joined by her sister’s husband, comedian Joel Chasnoff. Their comic/chef collaboration began with Balaboosta, a cookbook featuring 140 of Admony’s recipes infused with Chasnoff’s comedic touches. Comedian and Chicago native Joel Chasnoff has performed on stage and screen in nine countries, including two off-Broadway shows. Chef Einat is a two-time winner of popular cooking competition show Chopped, and beat celebrity chef Bobby Flay on his own show, Throwdown with Bobby Flay. Presented by The Annual Campaign of the Jewish Federation.

Tickets

Sponsored by National Bank of Indianapolis.

Films/Visual Arts | FILM: They Played for Their Lives

Thu, Nov 9 | 7 pm | $10

Thu, Nov 9 | 7 pm | $10

A film on the anniversary of Kristallnacht

An inspiring film about the life-affirming power of music in the worst of conditions – the concentration camps and ghettos under Nazi Germany. Local Indianapolis resident, Frank Grunwald, is one of the subjects of the film and will entertain the audience with his accordion music after the film. He will be joined by the director and project producer (Dr. Nurit Jugend). Kristallnacht is translated as the Night of Broken Glass and commemorates the violence against the Jews in Nazi Germany when Nazis torched synagogues, vandalized Jewish homes, schools and businesses, killed close to 100 Jews and arrested and sent tens of thousands to concentration camps.

Tickets

Sponsored by Talk to Tucker broker, Gadi Boukai and Etz Chaim Sephardic Congregation.

Films/Visual Arts | Heartland Film Award Winning Shorts

Sat, Nov 11 | 8 pm | $10

Sat, Nov 11 | 8 pm | $10

A selection of award winning shorts from the 2017 Heartland Film Festival.

Tickets

Authors | Peter Hayes, author of Why: Explaining the Holocaust

Mon, Nov 13 | 7 pm | $10

Mon, Nov 13 | 7 pm | $10

How does one grasp the enormity of the Holocaust? This is the challenge that Peter Hayes (Ph.D., Yale, 1982) has made his career. Professor Hayes is a world-renowned expert on the Holocaust about which he has written numerous books and articles. He was, for 30 years, one of the most popular and acclaimed professors at Northwestern University. He received the Biennial Book Prize from the Conference Group for Central European History of the American Historical Association. He currently serves as the chair of the Academic Committee of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.  Prof. Hayes will discuss his latest book, Why:  Explaining the Holocaust and examine what lessons can be learned that are relevant to our current political situation.

Tickets

Sponsored by Indiana Humanities Council; the Jewish Community Relations Council; Talk to Tucker broker, Gadi Boukai; and Indianapolis Bureau of Jewish Education

Sponsors
The Ann Katz Festival of Books and Arts is made possible with funding from the Irwin and Ann Katz Cultural Arts and Education Endowment Fund.

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