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Did You Know?

Israel engineers are behind the development of the largest communications router in the world, launched by Cisco.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

The Weekly Schmooze: Fight for Your Right to Party

Last week, we had Washington D.C. and New York competing for the world's biggest menorah. Hanukka may be a week behind us, but we have a new contender, this time for highest menorah. Rabbi Avraham Chazanow, a Chabad emissary in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, brought tiki torches to the top of the dormant volcano Mauna Kea, the highest point in the state. When the tiki torches were lined up, they formed a menorah at 4,205 meters above sea level!

What was the most Jewish movie of the year? That depends on how you define "Jewish movie," but the recently-released film Black Swan, which is garnering major Oscar buzz, certainly has Yid cred. Darren Aronofsky's psychological thriller, which tells the story of two ballerinas vying for the lead role in "Swan Lake," features three Jewish actresses as star dancers in the New York City Ballet. Natalie Portman, who plays the role of Nina, was born in Jerusalem and briefly returned to study in the Hebrew University. Nina's rival, Lily, is played by Mila Kunis, whose family left the Ukraine for the US after the fall of the Soviet Union. Winona Ryder, born Winona Horowitz, plays an older ballerina, who is no longer considered for leading roles at the NYCB.

If anyone questions the accuracy of Jewish ballerinas, they should read about Dame Alicia Markova, the founding prima ballerina of the Royal Ballet in London and the American Ballet Theater. Markova and Maya Plisetskaya of the Bolshoi Ballet – both Jewish – are amongst the greatest prima ballerinas of the 20th century.

Ch-check this out: Adam "MCA" Yauch of the Beastie Boys is writing and directing a short film about the making of the Jewish hip hop trio's 1987 hit "Fight For Your Right (To Party!)" Fight for Your Right Revisited will star Elijah Wood, Danny McBride and Seth Rogen as the innovative rappers, and John C. Reilly and Jack Black will also play parts. The film is slated to premiere at Sundance's Short Film Festival in January 2011.

Just for fun, we have the "Fight For Your Right" music video: