Generation Я is an initiative of the Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan created by Russian Jews for Russian Jews. Sharing similar childhood and immigration experiences, Russian-speaking Jews (RSJs) in their 20s, 30s, and 40s create and experience programs that explore the dual nature of their identities as American Jews from Russian-speaking families.
Gen Я reflects the JCC's commitment to building an inclusive and diverse community and to exploring and sustaining the richness of Jewish multiculturalism. Our programs offer Russian-speaking Jewish families opportunities to explore and strengthen their connections to Jewish life and values; sustain and enhance their relationships to Russian culture and language; develop relationships with others in the Russian-speaking Jewish community; and enjoy Russian-nuanced Jewish experiences.
To find Russian-language programs for children, please click one of the following links:
Our signature events include Shashlik in the Sukkah, summer rooftop concerts, literary nights, original theatrical productions, art exhibits, film screenings, and Friday night Shabbat dinners. Additionally, throughout the year Generation Я features artists, performers, and innovators who are recipients of the COJECO Blueprint Fellowship to showcase works that explore both personal and collective Russian-Jewish identity.
Coming Up @ Generation Я:
Fri, Dec 13
Shabbat Shabbang Jr.: A Very Gen Я Chanukah Celebration
Come together with fellow Russian-speaking families for candle-lighting and other Shabbat rituals, just in time for Chanukah, the festival of lights. Parents and children alike will enjoy a gourmet three-course meal, and early childhood educators will work with children to learn about the holiday and do hands-on projects in anticipation of it. The evening ends with a festive gathering in the lobby with families from the entire JCC community who have come together from other Shabbat dinners throughout the building for dessert and mingling to end the evening with a shabbang!
Save the Dates:
Sun, Jan 12
Simultaneous Chess Exhibition with Chess Grandmaster Gennady Sagalchik
After a sold-out simultaneous exhibition last year, Gennady Sagalchik returns to the JCC to give new aspirants a chance to play a game against a Grandmaster chess champion. (Players from last year’s event are also welcome to try their hand again.) An award-winning high school chess coach who has brought many teams to state championships, Grandmaster Sagalchik will begin the event with a presentation about the history of the game and lead an interactive discussion about the current state of affairs of chess in America and the international arena. Come play or just enjoy watching! Space is limited. Registration is on a first come first serve basis.
Thu, Mar 12
Generation Я Literary Night with Maxim D. Shrayer
Bilingual author, scholar, professor, and National Jewish Book Award winner Maxim D. Shrayer will enchant with excerpts from his first book of fiction, A Russian Immigrant: Three Novellas. In the words of fellow award-winning author Pavel Lembersky, “A Russian Immigrant is a loving farewell to things past and disintegrated… Shrayer’s protagonist is bound to take pride and place among other renowned characters of coming-of-age-fiction and beyond.” This beautiful troika of interwoven stories. by turn tender and tense, will leave you with a newfound appreciation for the deeply compelling truth about what it’s like to be a Russian immigrant in America. Wine reception and book signing to follow reading.
Sun, Apr 26
Yom Ha’atzmaut Challah-Making Event
It’s Israel’s 72nd birthday and our Generation Я families are invited to roll up their sleeves in the JCC’s state-of-the-art Patti Gelman Culinary Center to celebrate. Always wanted to learn how to make homemade challah? Come with the family to learn the simple act of challah-baking, which has been passed down from biblical times and become a central facet of the modern-day Shabbat table. Learn the various ways of braiding challah and the significance of round challot versus the customary braided ones. Celebrate Yom Ha’atzmaut, the anniversary of the birth of modern-day Israel, with other Russian-speaking families and learn about the traditions associated with the festive holiday. Space is limited. Registration is on a first come first serve basis; walk-ins may not be able to be accommodated.
Fri, Jun 12
5th Annual Shabbat Na Kryshe for Russian-Speaking Families
Join us for this annually sold-out rooftop Shabbat dinner, uniquely themed, and on the JCC's magnificent rooftop. Families bring a kosher meal, while we provide everything else--from entertainment to drinks to gorgeous views of the Manhattan skyline. Come with friends or meet new ones as you kick off the summer at Shabbat Na Kryshe. Tickets are limited. Seats can only be guaranteed with advance purchase.