Sunday, February 24, 2013

Purim Shpiels: One of the Best - A Les Miserables Parody


Today is Purim, the funniest day of the Jewish year. On this day even the most serious of our brethren and sistren let their hair down and open all the bottles of single malt scotch as they celebrate the victory of the Jews in Persia over their enemy Haman.

For weeks leading up to Purim, members of synagogues around the world have been creating parodies, spoofs, satires, some musical, some readings, to perform for their friends and fellow congregants at the traditional Purim seudah (festive meal) in the late afternoon and into the evening.

Some of these Purim shpiels appeal only to the members of the individual congregations as they are full of inside jokes and local references. We've been watching the few that have more universal appeal, and more are coming in every day. It's our intent to share with you some of the best ones, even if it's a few days after Purim.

Today we're sharing a Purim shpiel by members of the Mount Sinai Jewish Center in Washington Heights, New York, one of the entries in a Purim parody contest. We haven't seen all of the entries and we don't know which won first prize, but this one seems a winner to us, so we're posting it on the day of Purim. Some of our readers may remember last year's prize winner, The Frumest iPhone Ever.


Today's post is a takeoff on Les Miserables, including most of the songs from the show/movie, with lyrics expressing the trials and tribulations and joys and sorrows of life in a Modern Orthodox shul. If you're not familiar with some of the references, there's a lot of interplay on the practice of the Orthodox and some of the more right-leaning Modern Orthodox of avoiding any contact with members of the opposite sex and listening to womens' voices. These are known as shomer negiah (literally, observance of touching) or "being shomer" and kol isha.

Enjoy, and have a Happy Purim!

(A SPECIAL NOTE FOR NEW EMAIL SUBSCRIBERS:  THE VIDEO IS NOT VIEWABLE DIRECTLY FROM THE EMAIL THAT YOU GET EACH DAY.  YOU MUST CLICK ON THE TITLE AT THE TOP OF THE EMAIL TO REACH THE JEWISH HUMOR CENTRAL WEBSITE, FROM WHICH YOU CLICK ON THE PLAY BUTTON IN THE VIDEO IMAGE TO START THE VIDEO.)