Five (more) reasons to check out at this year’s Chutzpah! Festival

MM Contemporary Dance performing Gershwin Suite. Photo: Tiziano Ghidorsi

The Chutzpah! Festival is a celebration of Jewish dance, theatre, comedy, music and more. We’ve already written about the festival’s 19th-year headliner Sandra Bernhard, but here are five more reasons to check out the annual event (Oct. 24-Nov 24).

ProArteDanza presents The 9th. Pictured: dancers Kelly Shaw, Ryan Lee, Connor Mitton. Photo: Aleksandar Antonijevic

ProArtDanza: The 9th (Oct. 26 & 28 at 8 p.m., Norman Rothstein Theatre, 950 W. 41st Ave.)—The festival presents the world premiere of the Canadian company’s The 9th, a contemporary ballet interpretation of Beethoven’s 9th Symphony. Current social and political themes are brought to the fore by the company’s eight dancers.

Gary Lucas performs along to the original Universal film Dracula.

Gary Lucas (Oct. 30 at 7 and 9 p.m., Norman Rothstein Theatre)—The guitarist/composer performs live in front of Frankenstein (7 p.m.) and Spanish Dracula (9 p.m.). What is Spanish Dracula, you ask? According to Wiki, it’s a 1931 American Spanish-language Pre-Code horror film directed by George Melford and “filmed at night on the same sets that were being used during the day for the 1931 English-language film of the same title.”

The Diary of Anne Frank LatinX. Photo: Elvira Barjau

The Diary of Anne Frank LatinX (Nov. 6-8 at 8 p.m., Nov 8 at 1 p.m. and Nov 9 at 2 p.m., Norman Rothstein Theatre)—A contemporary take on the story of Anne Frank transports the setting to present-day Los Angeles, with a Latin family hiding from ICE.

AvevA (Nov 14 at 8 p.m., Rickshaw Theatre, 254 E. Hastings St.)—The West Coast premiere of Ethiopian-Israeli singer/songwriter AvevA, playing songs from her 2019 album In My Thoughts. She sings in both English and Amharic.

MM Contemporary Dance: Gershwin Suites and Schubert Frames (Nov. 1, 2 & 4 at 8 p.m., Norman Rothstein Theatre)—Chutzpah! presents the Canadian premieres of two dances pieces from Italy’s MM Contemporary Dance. Besides the music of George Gershwin, Gershwin Suites is also inspired by the paintings of Edward Hopper.

For tickets to all shows, visit

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