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A Lyrical Tribute at Songwriters Awards

By Masha Leon

“Let the world know who writes the songs!” proclaimed Hal David, chairman and CEO of the Songwriters Hall of Fame, at the June 12 Induction Ceremony & Awards Presentation of the National Academy of Popular Music.“Often the songwriters’ genius goes unrecognized by the public,” said Martin Bandier, chairman and CEO of EMI Music and…Read More


Cultural Awards Serve Up Feast for the Soul

By Masha Leon

The National Foundation for Jewish Culture’s June 2 Jewish Cultural Achievement awards dinner at the Plaza — co-chaired by Morris Offit and hosted by actor Ron Leibman — was a feast for the soul.Among the roster of participants delighting the 350 guests who helped raise $500,000 for the foundation was National Public Radio host Scott…Read More


Arguing the World: A ‘Conversation’

By Masha Leon

Sparks flew at the civil and witty “Conversation” between Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz and Natan Sharansky at the June 2 Aleph Society dinner at the Essex House. When moderator Charles Krauthammer expressed astonishment at the return of antisemitism 50 years after the Holocaust, Steinsaltz — author of 60 books on the Talmud,Read More


Comics Yuk It Up for 92nd Street Y, Raising $1.1 Million

By Masha Leon

The roster of standup comics who headlined the 92nd Street Y’s “Comedy Tonight! A Funny Monday in New York” May 19 benefit elicited roars, chuckles and stunned silences from the 920 guests who raised $1.1 million for the Y.ABC’s “The View” regular Joy Behar expressed alarm that “Buchanan wants everyone in the country to…Read More


Soros Gets Boos for Using YIVO Stage as Political Platform

By Masha Leon

It was “Budapest at the Pierre [Hotel]” for the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research’s May 13 benefit dinner honoring architect Moshe Safdie and Imre Kertész, who won the 2002 Nobel Prize for literature. As Hungarian musicians and dancers entertained, diplomats from Hungary, Austria and Lithuania and 470 YIVO guests (who raised $1 million…Read More


Broader Horizons Triumph in ‘Best of Times for Women’

By Masha Leon

Journalist Ruth Gruber and sex guru Ruth Westheimer — with doctorates, the “two Drs. Ruth” — took center stage at the May 12 women’s luncheon hosted by the Museum of Jewish Heritage–A Living Memorial to the Holocaust. Following greetings by co-chairs Patti Kenner and Ann Oster, museum chairman Robert Morgenthau and director David..Read More


An Evening of Two Elies: Wiesel, Tahari

By Masha Leon

The American Jewish Committee New York Chapter’s April 30 Stanley M. Isaacs Human Relations Award dinner at the New York Hilton — at which Elie Wiesel presented an award to fashion designer Elie Tahari — will be remembered as “The Evening of the Two Elies.” Delighting the 350 guests who helped raise $400,000, the biblically nimble Wiesel…Read More


A Stately Tribute to the Shoah From Powell

By Masha Leon

The highlight of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum’s week-long 10th anniversary celebration was the April 30 National Days of Remembrance commemoration address by Secretary of State Colin Powell.Read More


Lunch in the Limelight for the Producers

By Masha Leon

“I’ll do anything for Isabelle Stevenson [American Theatre Wing’s chairman of the board]… even wear men’s clothes,” declared master of ceremonies Harvey Fierstein at the Wing’s April 14 luncheon, which honored 12 Broadway producers — all women: Dasha Epstein…Read More


Workmen’s Circle Seder Hits High Note

By Masha Leon

More than 300 guests joined in celebrating the Workmen’s Circle/Arbeter Ring star-studded April 13 gala Seder at the Grand Hyatt. Narrated by Eleanor Reissa and Adrienne Cooper, the streamlined program, under the baton of artistic and musical director Zalmen Mlotek, showcased the Workmen’s Circle Chorus, New Yiddish Chorale and a roster of…Read More





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