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Sunday, June 17


Who do you think you are? Jewish Australian stories
With ancestors including First Fleet convicts, free settlers, and soldiers in WWI, these panelists are part of Jewish families who have lived Down Under for well over a century (or two!). When, and how, did their ancestors come to Australia? What does it mean to be part of such a long line of Jewish Australians and custodians of their stories? How do we cultivate an awareness of our family histories? Join us for some captivating story-telling and discussion.

avatar for Jacqui Wasilewsky

Jacqui Wasilewsky

Jacqui Wasilewsky is Manager of Community Stories at the Sydney Jewish Museum. Her department has recorded more than 150 interviews and published 76 biographies. Jacqui completed her BA/LLB in 1987 and MA (History) in 1998 at UNSW and Certificate of Interactive Multimedia in 2004... Read More →

avatar for Peter Allen

Peter Allen

As National Coordinator of the Centenary of Anzac Jewish Program, Peter organised the publication of Jewish Anzacs by Mark Dapin, facilitated projects in every State from 2014 to 2018 and attended centenaries of the Battles of Fromelles and Beersheba. One of Peter's ancestors was... Read More →
avatar for Shelley Einfeld

Shelley Einfeld

Shelley Einfeld is a Jewish Australian with a strong family history of communal contribution. Her grandfather Sydney Einfeld was named for the city, being born just 3 weeks after his parents’ 1909 arrival for his father to become chazan at The Great Synagogue. Syd became an icon... Read More →
avatar for Jono Herrman

Jono Herrman

Jono is a devotee of the Sydney and Israeli startup scenes and descendant of Jewish convict Abraham Rheuben and his uncle, Charles Dickens’s Fagin. His early Jewish life was traditional—a Bar Mitzvah, Friday nights, synagogue 3x a year—and communal involvement over the years... Read More →
avatar for Eli Levi

Eli Levi

Eli is a law and politics graduate of the University of Sydney and last year completed a Jewish text-study fellowship in New York. She comes from a long line of Jewish Australians and is passionate about contributing to the Jewish community — working for the ECAJ and volunteering... Read More →

Sunday June 17, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am


Coffee bean and tea leaf: exploring the Jewish world one mug at a time
WORKSHOP | Coffee and tea can make or break our mornings. In this workshop we'll gain insights into origins — of coffees and teas from around the world, and of the Jewish communities in the producing countries. We will also explore the delicate art of differentiating between beans, extractions, espressos and brews.


Daniel Barukh

Daniel is a barista and managing director of Cap Away. Not only will he be supplying you with your morning Limmud coffee but he will also share his skills and expertise — at our first-ever coffee workshop.
avatar for Yaron Finkelstein

Yaron Finkelstein

Yaron Finkelstein is a political and campaigns consultant who regularly swaps the knifings and bloody world of politics for, well, the knifings and bloody world of the kitchen. A former amateur food/restaurant reviewer with a professional appetite for great food, Yaron has amassed... Read More →

Sunday June 17, 2018 10:45am - 11:45am


Forgotten refugees of the Middle East conflict: Jews from Arab lands and Iran
FILM + Q&A | Vibrant Jewish communities once existed in Arab lands and Iran, their Mizrahi heritage predating Islam by 1,000 years. By 1948, nearly one million Jews lived in Arab countries — today, only 4,500 remain. The Arab world’s removal of 98.8% of its Jews is a textbook example of ethnic cleansing, yet the story isn’t told in textbooks. In this session we will screen The Forgotten Refugees, a film exploring the history, culture and forced exodus of these communities. Local Mizrahi Jews will also share their stories and answer questions.

avatar for Lynda Ben-Menashe

Lynda Ben-Menashe

Lynda is the Community Relations and Policy Manager of the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies, managing strategic relationships in NSW’s NGO sector, with the aims of combating racism, including antisemitism, and building social cohesion generally. Lynda spearheaded the local Jewish community's... Read More →

avatar for Racheline Barda

Racheline Barda

Racheline grew up in Alexandria, Egypt, but like most of the Jewish community was forced to leave in the wake of the 1956 Suez Crisis. She and her husband came to Australia as refugees. After raising three children, Racheline obtained a BA (Hons) and MPhil in French literature, and... Read More →
avatar for Helene Cadry

Helene Cadry

Helene was born in Tehran, where her paternal family had lived for generations. The Shah’s reign has been referred to as ‘The Golden Age’ for the Iranian Jewish community: they enjoyed business, professional and cultural freedoms. Despite this, Helene’s father could foresee... Read More →

Alfred Gubbay

Alfred was born in Baghdad in 1934. He completed his education at the Alliance School and in 1951, at the age of 17, left for Israel with his family as part of the mass migration that year. Alfred served in the Israeli Defence Forces and in 1957 moved to Sydney. He is currently the... Read More →

Sunday June 17, 2018 12:00pm - 1:30pm


Vitch: surviving under the spotlight
FILM + Q&A | Eddie Vitch was a Polish Jewish artist in 1930s Hollywood, who went on to make some controversial choices during the Holocaust. Who was this talented but enigmatic comedian and just how did he survive the Holocaust? Nothing is black and white in this gritty story about family, war, refugees and the art of survival. Lisa Cortez, Vitch’s daughter, presents a screening of the documentary Vitch and will lead a Q&A afterwards. Rated PG, all welcome.

avatar for Lisa Cortez

Lisa Cortez

Lisa is an IT specialist and still lives in Adelaide where her father, Eddie Vitch, spent his last years. She grew up hearing her father’s stories about Paris in the 1920s, the Hollywood years and what happened to him during the Holocaust. She is proud to have been the narrator... Read More →

Sunday June 17, 2018 1:15pm - 3:00pm


Completing the picture: oral history and the story of the Jews of Magdeburg under Nazism
This session charts the role of oral history in writing the history of the Jewish community of Magdeburg, Germany, during the Nazi period. The combination of oral history and archival material provides a personal and very dramatic presentation of everyday life. We will explore the power of oral history, and how, for the city of Magdeburg, being able to ‘hear’ and ‘connect’ with former Jewish citizens has generated much interest in reconnecting to its Jewish past and the city's dark history.

avatar for Michael Abrahams-Sprod

Michael Abrahams-Sprod

Dr Michael Abrahams-Sprod is Roth Lecturer in Israel, Jewish Civilisation and Holocaust Studies in the Department of Hebrew, Biblical and Jewish Studies, in the University of Sydney. He is also immediate Past President of the Australian Association for Jewish Studies. Michael currently... Read More →

Sunday June 17, 2018 3:00pm - 4:00pm


Jewish pirates of the Caribbean
In 1492 Columbus sailed the ocean blue. On the same day(ish) every Jew was expelled from Spain. Some Jews fled to the New World and became successful pirates, plundering the Spanish Armada. Hear their amazing stories.

avatar for Tommy Sterling

Tommy Sterling

Tommy is a long-time Limmudnik who loves to ask questions and explore the origin of all things Jewish. His Jewish passion spans the traditional to the academic, presented in an engaging manner with his uniquely humorous and irreverent approach. His other passion includes the Beatles... Read More →

Sunday June 17, 2018 4:15pm - 5:15pm


Six Australian synagogues: the architecture of faith
Synagogues have been built in Australia since the 1840s, and every generation reflects the aesthetics, ideology and social forces of its age. This session will trace the story of synagogue architecture in Australia by looking at six iconic shuls: Hobart, The Great Synagogue, Toorak, St Kilda, Mizrachi Melbourne and The Central Synagogue. We will compare them with examples from around the world and see how Australia is part of a wider story with a distinctive identity of its own.

avatar for Benjamin Elton

Benjamin Elton

Benjamin Elton is the Chief Minister of The Great Synagogue. He is from Manchester, studied at Cambridge and London Universities and worked for seven years in the British Civil Service. He received semicha from YCT Rabbinical School in New York and from Rabbi Chaim Rapoport in London... Read More →

Sunday June 17, 2018 5:30pm - 6:30pm