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Literary & Performing Arts

On Stage at the Robert Russell Theater in the Sablotsky Cultural Arts Center 

Most Literary and Performing Arts programs at the Alper JCC take place in the Robert Russell Theater. Our annual schedule includes a wide variety of authors, comedians, lecturers, musicians, theatrical productions and movie presentations. Please contact 305-271-9000, x268 or for tickets and additional information.

Click Here for the Russell Theater Seating Chart.

For information about Miami Children's Theater click here for their official website with upcoming shows and information.

Robert Russell Theater  Rentals - The Russell theater is available for rent to outside agencies, theaters, dancers, comedians, musicians, talent shows, educational performances, professional and community productions, recitals, lectures, films and more. This active theater brings information, entertainments, positive energy and vital engagement to our community. For more information on theater rentals, please contact Adrienne Birkett at 305.271.9000 x250 or email


Sunday, January 14 • 4:00pm
Capitol Steps -  Putting the  MoCK in Democracy!
Tickets: $35 JCC Member / $40 Community
Between constant news coverage and political social media wars, sometimes you need to sit back, relax, and have a good laugh at the expense of politics. Enter The Capitol Steps – Washington D.C.’s most famous and funniest musical political parody comedy troupe. Originally started by Congressional staffers with an inside view of the political workings of this country, the troupe uses timely satire and musical parody to monitor events and personalities on Capitol Hill, in the Oval Office, and in other centers of power and prestige around the world. They have also been known to take direct aim at American idiosyncrasies. For a night of clever side-splitting humor, you can’t beat this ensemble.
Click Here to Purchase Tickets


Tuesday, January 9, 2018 • 7:30pm • At the Ahavat Olam held at Killian Pines United Methodist Church, 10755 SW 112 Street
Sana Krasikov, The Patriots
Admission $10 • Author presentation and refreshments
This riveting novel about idealism, betrayal, and family secrets is set in the U.S. and Russia during the Cold War years. When the Great Depression hits, Florence Fein leaves college for what appears to be a plum job in Moscow and the promise of love and independence. But once in Russia, she quickly becomes entangled in a country she can’t escape. Through the history of one family, who moves back and forth between continents over three generations, The Patriots is a poignant tale of the power of love, and the rewards and risks of friendship and secrets.
Click Here to Purchase Tickets


Tuesday, January 30, 2018 • 7:30pm • Miller Center on the UM Campus, 5202 University Drive

Lenny Ben-David, American Interests in the Holy Land
Admission $10 • Author presentation and refreshments
Lenny Ben-David is the author of the book American Interests in the Holy Land Revealed in Early Photographs (Urim Publications, 2017).  Senator Joseph I. Lieberman said of the book, “With this wonderful book, Lenny continues to strengthen the bonds between the United States and Israel.” Ben-David’s book on World War I in the Holy Land Revealed in Early Photographs will be published in 2018.
Mr. Ben-David served as a private consultant in Washington and Jerusalem on public affairs and political strategies, working on behalf of the Georgian and Turkish governments, Conoco, HonestReporting, the Begin Center, Save a Child’s Heart, the Conference of Presidents, the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, and NGO Monitor.  He edited publications such as The Daily Alert, Israel Campus Beat, and Near East Report.
Click Here to Purchase Tickets


Wednesday, March 14, 2018 • 7:30pm • Alper JCC Robert Russell Theater, 11155 SW 112 Avenue 
Dave Barry, Adam Mansbach & Alan Zweibel, For This We Left Egypt?
Admission: Preferred Seating $36 • General Seating $18

Authors’ presentation and Passover refreshments
Three extraordinarily talented comedy writers joined forces to create For This We Left Egypt?, a hilarious parody of the Passover Haggadah. Prepare to be entertained with humorous explanations of the holiday rituals, satirical stories of slavery and the exodus and ridiculous questions for discussion. David Barry is a Pulitzer Prize-winning humor writer and author of numerous New York Times bestselling books. Adam Mansbach is an award-winning novelist, screenwriter, and New York Times bestselling author. Alan Zweibel is an original Saturday Night Live writer, and has won numerous Emmy and Writers Guild Awards for his work in television.
Co-Sponsor: Israel Bonds 
Click Here to Purchase Tickets

Saturday, March 24 • 7:30pm
Jackie Mason the Musical in cooperation with Comic Cure
Tickets: $20 JCC Member / $25 Community
Based on a true story, Jackie Mason's ten year offbeat romance circa Miami Beach 1981 as seen through the eyes of his real-life daughter - comedian Sheba Mason (who’s playing her own mother) and starring David R. Gordon as Jackie Mason. The Jackie Mason Musical begins at a deli in Miami in 1977, where Jackie – a renown 46 year old Comedian, spots twenty-something Ginger (Sheba Mason). Along for the ride is her overbearing mom, Mrs. Olivier, and a hilarious cast of offbeat characters. The original score includes “Ode to the Early Bird Special” and “I Never Met This Yenta” Meet and greet after the show.
Click Here to Purchase Tickets


Monday, April 9 Time TBD 
Chef Shaya in conversation with Lee Schrager discussing his book

Shaya: An Odyssey of Food, My Journey Back to Israel.
A moving, deeply personal journey of survival and discovery that tells of the evolution of a cuisine and of the transformative power and magic of food and cooking. From the two-time James Beard Award-winning chef whose celebrated New Orleans restaurants have been hailed as the country's most innovative and best by Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, Saveur, GQ, and Esquire.


Sunday, April 15 • 4:00pm
South Florida Jazz Featuring Ira Sullivan
Tickets: $15 JCC Member$20 Community
An active musician since the 1950s, Ira Sullivan is a true jazz legend whose roots go back so far that he was jamming with the cool cats in Chicago for the birth of Bebop. Ira Sullivan is multi-faceted musician and composer who calls Washington, D.C. his birthplace. By the age of 18, he was playing trumpet, sax, flute, and flugelhorn with some of the best in the business. You may also know him from Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers. Around 1963, Sullivan moved to Miami to raise his family. And now over 50 years later, he will be performing at the Alper JCC’s own Russell Theater.
Click Here to Purchase Tickets


Holocaust Impact Theater
March 1 - 3, 2018
The Holocaust Impact Theater is a unique theater project that engages local high school students to write, produce, direct and perform their original script. This year's production will be performed on March 1, 2 & 3 at 7 pm. The show uses The Holocaust as the foundation of social hate, and reflects on current social injustices, bullying, stereotyping and intolerances while encouraging acceptance, tolerance and understanding. For further information and special group rates, contact Ruth Gordon at 305.253.5867.


If you would like to volunteer at the book festival, please contact Marcy Levitt at or 305.271.9000 x269.

2017 Book Festival Steering Committee
Women’s Day Luncheon Chair: Cheryl Rosen

Executive Committee: Nadine Barocas, Barbara Feldman, Renee Greenstein, Elaine Katz, Anne Sheldon, Susan Spatzer, Joe Unger

Director of Literary & Performing Arts: Marcy Levitt

The Alper JCC’s 37th Annual Berrin Family Jewish Book Festival has been made possible through the generous support of:

City of Coral Gables; Coral Gables Country Club; In Memory of Hillelene Lustig; Israel, Rose, Henry and Robert Weiner Charitable Foundation, Inc. in Memory of Hermine Wiener; Israel Bonds; JCC Neshama Society;Jean Soman; The Sue and Leonard Miller Center for Contemporary Judaic Studies at the University of Miami; Steinway & Sons Miami. The Jewish Book Festival and Cultural Arts programs are also made possible with the support of the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs and the Cultural Affairs Council, the Miami-Dade County Mayor and Board of County Commissioners. Sponsored in part by the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Council onArts and Culture.

We would like to thank our Community Partners:

Ahavat Olam; AIPAC; Beth David Congregation; Bet Shira Congregation; Center for the Advancement of Jewish Education (CAJE) Florence Melton Adult Mini-School; Chabad of Kendall & Pinecrest;Jack and Harriet Rosenfeld Foundation Program in Jewish Education at UM; Jewish Community Services of South Florida; MCCJ; Miami-Dade County Public Schools Div.of Social Science; Temple Beth Am; Temple Beth Or; Temple Judea; Young Israel of Kendall.

Many of the author appearances are arranged through the Jewish Book Council’s Jewish Book Network, of which the Alper JCC is a member.

The Dave and Mary Alper JCC thanks the co-sponsoring organizations for their participation in the 37th Alper JCC Berrin Family Jewish Book Festival. Co-sponsorship does not imply the endorsement of opinions expressed by the guest authors. All opinions and ideas expressed by the authors are solely their own and do not express the positions or opinions of the Dave and Mary Alper JCC leadership,Book Festival Committee, staff or the co-sponsoring agencies.

The Dave and Mary Alper Jewish Community Center on The Jay Morton-Levinthal Campus is a beneficiary agency of the Greater Miami Jewish Federation, United Way of Miami-Dade County and a member agency of the JCC Association.





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