Tag Archive for Montreal

David Rome, an appreciation, by Ben Kayfetz

From the Canadian Jewish News, 1996 David Rome was born and spent his first ten years in Vilna, the “Jerusalem of Lithuania.” This tells us much about his love of books and writing, his search for deep roots in Canadian Jewish life and his overall ahavat Yisrael. When they came to America, his family settled,…

OBIT: Joseph Wolfe Gordon (1937)

An Actor Struts and Frets Across the Yiddish Stage No More By S. H. Abramson From the Canadian Jewish Standard, January 1937 The recent passing of my old friend Joe Gordon at the Mount Sinai Sanitarium, after an illness of six years, brings to mind a host of memories. During my last visit to Joe…

Canadian Jews fought in American Civil War

Hard to believe, but there were Jews in Toronto and probably Montreal as well who were drawing monthly pensions from the U.S. government as late as 1925 for their participation as soldiers in the American Civil War. An index of Civil War pension recipients indicates that some 4,966 veterans of America’s most sanguinary conflict filed…

Medical condition leads to genealogy breakthrough

Stanley Diamond, a semi-retired Montreal businessman who ran a company that manufactured decorated ceilings, has become a medical-genealogical detective in a bid to defuse what he calls a “ticking time bomb” and prevent potential suffering and death caused by thalassemia, a genetic disease. Common among Sephardic Jews, Greeks, Italians and other Mediterranean peoples, the gene…

Many highlights for repeat visitors to Montreal

In Place d’Armes, an historic square in Montreal’s Old City, two opposing shrines — a loftily-domed church and a classically-pillared bank — face off against each other, potent symbols of the durable dialectic between religion and commerce that has helped shape this dynamic French-and-English-speaking city founded on an island in the St. Lawrence more than 350…

Montreal Jewish community has rich history

A special summer of activities highlighting Montreal’s historic Jewish community kicks off June 15 (2000) when a musical version of Mordecai Richler’s The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz premieres at the Saidye Bronfman Centre in this famously bilingual city. As it happens, the musical is also bilingual: it’s in Yiddish, with simultaneous English translation available for…

Please don’t eat the insects at Montreal’s Insectarium

Insect chop suey, sauteed crickets, and pizzas slices loaded with mealworms were among the hors d’oeuvres served recently at a cocktail party at the Insectarium, a Montreal museum devoted to insects. As a master chef fried locusts in a wok, guests sampled cricket-stuffed mushrooms and acras, a Caribbean pasta dish liberally sprinkled with mealworms. For…

Two books on the Jews of Montreal

From the Ghetto to the Main: The Story of the Jews of Montreal, by Joe King, is a masterly treatment of more than two and half centuries of Jewish history in what was once the largest Jewish community in the Dominion of Canada. King sets the stage for his subject in five chapters that sketch…

Obit: Mordecai Richler (1931-2001); and IFOA Tribute (2000)

Mordecai Richler, the acclaimed Canadian novelist who died July 3, 2001 at the age of 70, will be remembered for his various novels that brought the Jewish life of Montreal to vibrant and often hilarious life on the page. An irreverent satirist who honed his wit on diverse targets from the Jews to Quebec’s protective…

An encounter with David Cronenberg

Twenty years ago this summer (i.e., the summer of 1974) this reporter was a 20-year-old film student at York University, who had been lucky enough to find some meager employment as a pre-production assistant for a $180,000-budget feature film being shot in Montreal. The working title was Orgy of the Blood Parasites, the director was…