Jewish Music Festival concerts set in Berkeley, S.F.

The performance will take place at First Congregation Church of Berkeley, 2345 Channing Way. Tickets are $16 to $18.

Brave Old World also will present highlights from "The Heart and Art of Grandparenting" at 5 p.m. Sunday, March 12 at Marin Jewish Community Center, 200 N. San Pedro Road, San Rafael.

The festival will begin at 8 p.m. Saturday, March 4 with a performance of "La Juive" (The Jewess) at U.C. Berkeley's Hertz Hall.

Performers will be Stephen Guggenheim, Gregory Stapp, Lise Lindstrom and Rachel Brott.

Jacques Fromental Halévy's 19th-century Jewish-themed opera is laced with irony, anti-Semitism, betrayal and unrequited loved. It was presented 562 times when introduced at the Paris Opera and was performed in April in New York.

A second festival performance of the opera will take place at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, March 5 at San Francisco Conservatory of Music, 1201 Ortega St., S.F. Tickets for either show are $25 to $28.

A free lecture on the opera by Michael Barclay of the Opera Education International takes place at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 29 at the San Francisco Main Library in Civic Center.

Also, a free symposium on the opera with Halévy scholar Diana Hallman and U.C. Berkeley faculty will take place at 3 p.m. Friday, March 3 in the Elkus Room of U.C. Berkeley's Morrison Hall.

"Jewish Music on the Edge: Ben Goldberg's Twelve Minor" will commence at 7:30 p.m. Monday, March 6 at Freight and Salvage Coffeehouse, 1111 Addison St., Berkeley.

Goldberg puts a jazz spin on his klezmer roots with his sextet, Twelve Minor. The group includes Miya Masaoka on koto, Carla Kihlstedt on violin, Rob Sudduth on saxophone, John Schifflet on bass, Smith Dobson Jr., on drums. Tickets are $12 to $14.

Tuesday, March 7 will feature Frank London and Lorin Sklamberg of the Klezmatics. The pair will present niggunim, mystical Jewish melodies featuring interpretations of traditional Chassidic works and original music. Joining them will be New York jazz pianist Uri Caine. The show will take place at 7:30 p.m. at the BRJCC, 1414 Walnut St., Berkeley. Tickets are $14 to $16.

"Sounds Like Peace: Jews and Arabs Mix Music in Israel" is a lecture by Ben Brinner slated for 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 8.

The U.C. Berkeley ethnomusicologist will share his research on the social and cultural implications of a collaboration between Jewish and Arab musicians in Israel today. He will speak at the BRJCC. Tickets are $8 to $10.

"Jewish Cultural Revival in Ukraine" is the topic of a Thursday, March 9 event. Singer Arkady Gendler will present songs and stories from Zaporozhye, Ukraine, during his U.S. premiere. Joining him will be ethnomusicologist Mark Slobin of Wesleyan University and singer-accordionist Jeanette Lewicki of the S.F. Klezmer Experience.

The event will take place at 2 and 7:30 p.m. at the BRJCC. Tickets are $10 to $14.

Gendler also will speak at noon Friday, March 3 with Eli Katz at MJCC, and at 2 p.m. Sunday, March 5 at the Albert L. Schultz Jewish Community Center, 655 Arastradero, Palo Alto.

Shir HaShirim, Song of Songs Minyan, will lead Shabbat services at 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 10 at the BRJCC. The egalitarian service, which meets monthly, unites Sephardi, Mizrahi and Ashkenazi liturgy. No tickets will be required.

For festival information, call the BRJCC at (510) 848-0237, ext. 227.