Let’s Put on a Show
Daily Show writer Rob Kutner started putting on an annual Purimspiel five years ago. He discusses his rowdy and popular parody with Sara Ivry.
Ed Helms, Jeremy Lawrence, and Seth Herzog in “Helms Family Hoedown.”
When Daily Show writer Rob Kutner moved to New York City five years ago, he corralled a group of performers and comedians to join him in a “Purimspiel”—a live (and generally raucous) parody of the biblical tale of Queen Esther, who saved the Jews of Persia from Haman’s murderous plot. A year later, word had spread that this was not your ordinary song and dance act. Kutner was turning away people at the door.
In their fifth annual presentation, called the Shushan Channel, which took place this past weekend, on Purim, Stephen Colbert wielded a grogger and Queen Esther snagged the top prize on America’s Next Top Model.
Rob and two of his actors—Seth Herzog and Raquel Hecker—speak with Nextbook about the origins of their spiel and perform a sketch from it.
Thirty years ago, Leslie Epstein raised hackles with his fictional take on the Lodz ghetto
Daily rate: $2
Monthly rate: $18
Yearly rate: $180
WAIT, WHY DO I HAVE TO PAY TO COMMENT?
Tablet is committed to bringing you the best, smartest, most enlightening and entertaining reporting and writing on Jewish life, all free of charge. We take pride in our community of readers, and are thrilled that you choose to engage with us in a way that is both thoughtful and thought-provoking. But the Internet, for all of its wonders, poses challenges to civilized and constructive discussion, allowing vocal—and, often, anonymous—minorities to drag it down with invective (and worse). Starting today, then, we are asking people who'd like to post comments on the site to pay a nominal fee—less a paywall than a gesture of your own commitment to the cause of great conversation. All proceeds go to helping us bring you the ambitious journalism that brought you here in the first place.
I NEED TO BE HEARD! BUT I DONT WANT TO PAY.
Readers can still interact with us free of charge via Facebook, Twitter, and our other social media channels, or write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Each week, we’ll select the best letters and publish them in a new letters to the editor feature on the Scroll.
We hope this new largely symbolic measure will help us create a more pleasant and cultivated environment for all of our readers, and, as always, we thank you deeply for your support.