NETTA BARZILAI’S 2018 Eurovision victory is an Israeli cultural landmark.  (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
NETTA BARZILAI’S 2018 Eurovision victory is an Israeli cultural landmark. (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
Jerusalem highlights May 5-11


Tired of the nonstop over-dramatic political theater that has beset Israel as the Knesset reconvened for its summer session? Take a break for a theater of a different kind.

The Mikro Theater (20 David Marcus St.) is presenting a new play, Judith’s Angels, based on the apocryphal Book of Judith. Directed by Irina Gorelik and Miriam Engel, the play is a fantasy story of a woman in a world of men, with angels debating whether the mythical Judith will end up in the Christian or Jewish afterlife – but what does Judith herself think? It is a look at giving voice to a larger-than-life woman who had simultaneously been deprived of a voice by male writers. Time: Noon. Tickets are available at


Come to the Willy Brandt Center for the Women’s Spring Fair. The fair, at 22 Ein Rogel in Abu Tor, is a great opportunity to get to know local women in the community and help support small businesses in the neighborhood. Enjoy food, buy some handmade goods, and participate in workshops. From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. For more information, visit


From spring fest to writer’s fest, it’s time for Israel’s largest and most important annual literary event – The Jerusalem Writers’ Festival. This year, the festival is featuring a talk today by Canadian author Margaret Atwood, who wrote the dystopian novel The Handmaid’s Tale, which was made into an award-winning TV series. 

Held in Mishkenot Sha’ananim, the multi-day event kicks off today with a number of events, panels and talks. The Handmaid’s Tale has become especially relevant to Israel in the past few months, with women dressed in handmaid’s costume appearing at nearly every major judicial reform protest.

 AMASSING DEMURELY in absolute silence, at a protest of families in Herzliya. (credit: Ze’ev Yanai) AMASSING DEMURELY in absolute silence, at a protest of families in Herzliya. (credit: Ze’ev Yanai)

Atwood’s talk will be broadcast free on Facebook from 7 p.m. to 8 pm. For more information, visit:


Israelis are clearly very patriotic – just look at the abundance of Israeli flags in the streets these past few months. And there’s nothing more patriotic for Israel than Eurovision. But before pop singer Noa Kirel takes the stage for the 2023 contest in Liverpool, relive Israel’s last victory on film at the Jerusalem Cinematheque at 8:30 p.m.

The 2018 Eurovision Song Contest in Portugal saw the relatively unknown Netta Barzilai take the stage by storm and win over the hearts, minds and eardrums of Europe with “Toy,” bringing the contest back to Israel and netting the Jewish state its fourth win.

But if you’re interested in something more akin to the writer’s fest, check out the film Judy Blume Forever at 6 p.m. This documentary takes a look at a Jewish-American author whose books have touched the lives of countless children and young adults the world over. For information about both, and to buy tickets, visit:


Today marks Lag Ba’Omer, when the traditional period of mourning ends and festivities begin. Though the main event is on Mount Meron the night before, there is fun to be had at a celebration beginning at 4 p.m. at Jerusalem’s Gravity Park (4 Naomi St.) for adults and children, courtesy of Chabad. Entrance is free.

Alternatively, come to Biratenu (6 Hillel St.) at 7:30 p.m. for Trivia Night, where teams of six compete on a variety of subjects in a classic pub quiz battle – with the bonus of being accompanied by a great selection of craft beer.

Yet another fun alcohol-themed extravaganza awaits at The Rabbit Hole (3 Yanai St.) at 7 p.m. Ever want to know what schnapps actually is? What about liqueur? Participate in a Hollander distillery workshop and find out – and there will be snacks. NIS 90 per person, NIS 150 for a couple. Register in advance by calling 052-326-5764.


Life in Jerusalem can be hard. Maybe you have culture shock from moving here, or maybe you’ve been here for years – but chances are you’ll make mistakes and get confused about something. Why not celebrate these failures? 

That’s what the Evening of Jerusalem Failures is about. Held at BeerBazar (161 Jaffa St.) at 8:30 p.m., you’ll hear stories about embarrassing failures as a form of hilarious shock therapy that only Jerusalemites will understand.

Stand-up comedian Ben Levkowitz will be hosting. Tickets, including beer, cost NIS 30. Don’t worry too much – this whole evening will be embarrassing! For more information and tickets, visit


Finish the week with the music of Yoni Rechter. With a career spanning more than four decades, this Israeli composer, pianist, singer and producer is famed for his sophisticated but never pretentious work, featuring complex harmonies but simple and memorable melodies. 

Whether as a member of the hit band Kaveret, a producer, or soloist, Rechter is one of the most legendary names in Israeli music. At this concert, Rechter will showcase some of his iconic work from his vast repertoire. Head to the Zappa Club (28 Hebron Rd.) at 9:30 p.m. and check it out. For tickets, go to

Throwing a special party? Opening an art exhibition or a new bar? Bringing in a guest speaker to introduce a fascinating topic? Drop a line at and let In Jerusalem know about it. Send emails with “Jerusalem Highlights” in the subject line. Although all information is welcome, we cannot guarantee it will be featured in the column.

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