New York

'The Way We Were' writer dies at 93

By Jennifer Lipman, May 6, 2011

The writer of the classics West Side Story and The Way We Were has died at the age of 93.

Arthur Laurents, born Arthur Levine to atheist Jewish parents in Brooklyn, died on Thursday in New York.

He began writing military training films for the US army during the Second World War, then went on to enjoy an illustrious career in both theatre and film.

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Rabbi sex conviction in doubt

By Paul Berger, April 21, 2011

The high-profile conviction of a Brooklyn rabbi on sex abuse charges has been thrown into doubt amid allegations of witness tampering and blackmail.

Baruch Lebovits, 60, was jailed for up to 32 years after being convicted by a Brooklyn court last year of sexually abusing a teenage boy.

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Rabbi accused in flight grope case

By Jennifer Lipman, April 15, 2011

A rabbi has been arrested for allegedly groping a woman as they flew to New York.

Rabbi Gavriel Bidany told the female passenger sitting next to him that he was "asleep" during the incident, on a Delta Airlines flight from Tel Aviv last month. He was later charged with misdemeanour assault.

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Do stop boycotting: Journey sue anti-Israel group over Glee copy

By Jennifer Lipman, April 15, 2011

The composers of the Glee hit Don't Stop Believin', have taken legal action against an anti-Israel group for reworking the song into a pro-Palestinian tune without permission.

According to the New York Post, members of the band Journey are seeking a permanent injunction to prevent Adalah from using the song again.

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Mazel Tov: Matisyahu tweets birth of new son

By Jennifer Lipman, April 15, 2011

Chasidic Jewish rapper Matisyahu has announced the birth of his third child.

The musician, famous for hits including Jerusalem and King Without a Crown, revealed the news on Twitter.

He wrote: "Tonight on the birthday of the rebbe, I was blessed with a baby boy."

He was referring to the spiritual leader of the Chasidic movement.

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Barmitzvah boy funds Broadway musical on Liberty

By Jennifer Lipman, April 6, 2011

A barmitzvah boy has found an unusual solution to all the money he was given by guests at his party – he has donated it to the producers of a Broadway musical about immigrants.

New York teenager Jesse Naranjo is to use the more than £1,600 he was given following the ceremony last year to help send "Liberty: The Musical" to a major theatre.

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Severed pig foot sent to Islam debate congressman

By Jennifer Lipman, April 5, 2011

A high-profile Republican politician has been sent a bloodied pig foot with an allegedly antisemitic note attached.

The package was sent to the Capitol Hill office of New York representative Peter King, a polarising figure in the US for his role chairing last month’s congressional hearings on radical Islam. It was discovered on Monday by security before it reached the congressman.

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Cash-launder Syrian rabbi comes clean in court

By Ellen Tumposky, March 31, 2011

An elderly and prominent Syrian rabbi from Brooklyn has pleaded guilty to laundering tens of thousands of dollars through a religious charity.

Saul Kassin, 89, rabbi of Congregation Sharee Zion in Brooklyn, the largest Syrian Sephardic synagogue in the US, confessed his crime to a federal court earlier this week.

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On this day: The Triangle Shirtwaist fire

By Jennifer Lipman, March 25, 2011

It was late on a Saturday afternoon, the end of the working day, when the first flames were spotted at the Triangle Waist Company factory in New York.

The tragedy left 146 people dead and more than 70 with injuries, prompting the introduction of improved regulations on factory safety.

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The Maccabeats do Purim: Raise Your Glass

By Jennifer Lipman, March 15, 2011
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Remember the Maccabeats' Chanucah version of Candlelight. Well, the band from New York are back with a song for Purim, to the of Pink's hit Raise Your Glass.

Full coverage of Purim here

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