Media Release: Aleph Melbourne documentary to screen at 2017 St Kilda Film Festival

APRIL 26 2017

Aleph Melbourne is thrilled to announce our documentary “Aleph Melbourne – Celebrating 20 Years” will be screened in the prestigious 2017 St Kilda Film Festival.

A collaboration between Aleph Melbourne and YouthWorx Productions, the documentary is a culmination of over a year’s work and brings together 20 years of memorabilia, interviews and amazing outcomes.

The documentary will screen as part of the “Top 100 – 9” session on Sunday May 21 at 5:45pm.  All film, session and booking information here:

Our documentary has already screened at the North Brisbane Film Festival (Jan 2017), the Respect Belfast Human Rights Film Festival (Mar 2017), the Santa Barbara Jewish Film Festival (Mar 2017) and will screen at the My True Colors Festival in Brooklyn, NY (Jun 2017).

For more information contact:
Michael Barnett

Posted in Culture/Tradition, GLBTIQ, Jewish | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Multilingual Rainbow Community Service Announcement (CSA) Project

JOY 94.9 has produced a series of multilingual community service announcements for broadcast on their station and across Australia.

Aleph Melbourne is featured in a Hebrew-language announcement as part of this project.

All announcements are available here.

Posted in Health/Welfare | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

There’s a lot of Israeli at the 2017 MQFF

Desire Will Set You Free | Fri 17 Mar 10:15 PM | 92 mins | Germany | 2016 | Yony Leyser
Ezra (director Yony Leyser), an Israeli-Palestinian writer sunk deep into Berlin’s artistic underground, has a passing fascination with Russian hustler, Sasha (Tim Fabian Hoffman), while his acerbic friend Catherine (Chloe Griffin) attempts to sex her way free of her straight-edged girlfriend (Amber Benson, Buffy the Vampire Slayer). Like the city that provides its intoxicating setting, Desire Will Set You Free is packed with influences (from Isherwood to Bowie) and is under the influence. Tick off your Berlin scenester cameos: look out for performances from Nina Hagen, Peaches, Sookee, Blixa Bargeld and beefcake-electro oddities Rummelsnuff. English and German/Arabic/Hebrew with English subtitles.

Haircut | Sun 19 Mar 6:00 PM | 2 mins | Israel | 2015 | Amir Stolar
On the morning of his 29th’ birthday, Omer thinks back on his ex boyfriend Ori. This starts a journey of regrets and mixed emotions.

Barash | Mon 20 Mar 8:00 PM | 5 mins | Israel | 2015 | Michal Vinik
‘Israeli-Palestinian tensions deepen and complicate more familiar coming-out subject matter in Michawl Vinik’s vibrant debut’ – Variety

Seventeen year old Naama Barash enjoys alcohol, drugs and hanging out with her likeminded friends. When the suburban teen meets the cool, more experienced Dana they explore Tel Aviv’s nightlife and a hesitant relationship develops between them. Meanwhile Naama’s sister has gone missing from her post at a nearby military base, diverting her family’s attention away from the new developments in Naama’s life. Drawing favourable comparisons to Blue is the Warmest Colour, Barash is about the dizzy rush of first love, and an original, energetic drama that defies the stereotypes of life in Israel. Hebrew with English subtitles.

Who’s Gonna Love Me Now | Wed 22 Mar 6:15 PM | 85 mins | Israel | UK | 2016 | Tomer Heymann, Barak Heymann, Alexander Bodin Saphir
“Who’s gonna love me now?” These words, spoken by an ex lover, resonate with Saar, who is HIV positive. After being barred from his Israeli kibbutz years earlier, and with his Orthodox family still unable to accept his sexuality, Saar established a new life in London, where the London Gay Men’s Chorus have become an extended family. Featuring some stirring performances from the chorus, Who’s Gonna Love Me Now? is a deeply affecting, intimate portrait of a man trying to balance his yearning for home with his desire to live life on his own terms. English and Hebrew with English subtitles

Cut | Fri 24 Mar 10:00 PM | 3 mins | Israel | 2015 | Dar Laor
A quirky animation on the myths that surround what is normal and natural in the realms of gender and identity.

Fake It | Sun 26 Mar 3:30 PM | 23 mins | Israel | 2015 | Tzurit Hartzion
Zohar needs more photographs for her exhibition and asks her ex, Ella, to recreate things that happened before the breakup so that she can photograph them. Is it real or are they, faking it. Hebrew with English subtitles.

Posted in Culture/Tradition, Middle East | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Aleph celebrates 20 years in new documentary | AJN

Aleph celebrates 20 years in new documentary - AJN - Feb 3 2017

Posted in Culture/Tradition, GLBTIQ, Jewish | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

North Brisbane Film Festival screens Aleph documentary

North Brisbane Film Festival – January 20 2017

Northside Chronicle - Jan 18 2017 - page 7 - Film talent set to shine

Posted in Culture/Tradition, GLBTIQ | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Aleph documentary in official selection at 2017 Respect Belfast Human Rights Film Festival

Respect Belfast Human Rights Film Festival 2017Aleph Melbourne is very proud that our documentary “Aleph Melbourne – Celebrating 20 Years” is amongst the official selection at the 2017 Respect Belfast Human Rights Film Festival.

Posted in GLBTIQ, Human Rights, Jewish | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Jewish submissions to the Select Committee on the Exposure Draft of the Marriage Amendment (Same-Sex Marriage) Bill

Select Committee on the Exposure Draft of the Marriage Amendment (Same-Sex Marriage) Bill

All submissions

6 Council of Progressive Rabbis and the Union for Progressive Judaism (PDF 2422 KB) [backup copy]
6.1 Supplementary to submission 6 (PDF 3073 KB)  [backup copy]
128 Rabbinic Council of Australia and New Zealand (PDF 68 KB) [backup copy]
131 Rabbinical Council of NSW (PDF 131 KB) [backup copy]
133 Rabbinical Council of Australia and New Zealand (RCANZ) & Rabbinical Council of Victoria (RCV) (PDF 33 KB) [backup copy]
Posted in Human Rights, Jewish, Politics | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Aleph Melbourne withdraws from tainted 2017 Midsumma Pride March

Regretfully Aleph Melbourne will not be participating in the 2017 Pride March due to Midsumma keeping News Corp Australia as a sponsor.  This breaks an annual tradition going back to 1997.

While News Corp journalists like Andrew Bolt, Mirada Devine and Rita Panahi are on a crusade to destroy transgender kids, the Safe Schools program and marriage equality, it is completely unacceptable for any LGBTIQ community organisation to accept money or in-kind support from them.

Thirteen-year old Tyrone Unsworth might not have had cause to take his own life if News Corp had not fuelled the fires of bigotry and intolerance.  If Midsumma want to partner with News Corp then it must accept responsibility for Tyrone’s tragic death.

“This is the second year that News Corp have been a supporter of Midsumma (Herald Sun logo was used last year).”
— Midsumma (25/11/2016)

Sadly this is the second year that Midsumma have had News Corp as a sponsor.  Aleph Melbourne would not have participated in 2016 if this had become apparent at the time.

Aleph Melbourne calls on Midsumma to hold News Corp to account for their words and actions, along with returning any cash sponsorship or in-kind support.

JOY 94.9FM – 6PM News – Nov 25 2016


Community Upset At Midsumma’s News Corp Sponsorship (SameSame; 25/11/2016)
Gay activist must apologise for this lie (Herald-Sun; 26/11/2016)
OPINION: Enough, Everyone, Andrew Bolt Is No Transphobe (SameSame; 27/11/2016)

Posted in Activism, GLBTIQ | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

ADC presents “Making a Difference” award to Georgie Stone

Transgender teen becomes youngest, and first ever LGBTI person to receive prestigious ADC Making a Difference Award

November 15, 2016

16-year-old transgender teen Georgie Stone, who has campaigned for transgender rights and for greater tolerance, has become the youngest, and first, LGBTI person to win the prestigious Anti-Defamation Commission’s (ADC) Making a Difference Award given to individuals who through their actions champion social change, confront hatred, and empower others to create a more inclusive, respectful society.

Dr. Dvir Abramovich, Chairman of the ADC issued the following statement:

“Georgie is a remarkable young woman. Her courageous advocacy for the LGBTI community, and her unwavering, uplifting dedication to create a kinder and more tolerant Australia perfectly mirror our core mission of combatting discrimination and bigotry.  She is a one-of-a-kind inspirational advocate for social change and a positive role model foryoung people to stand up to hatred and bullying. Her passionate voice reminds us that we all have a duty to bring greater awareness to the impact of bias, to advance equality and opportunity for all people and to build bridges of understanding.”

In accepting the award Georgie Stone said:

“It was an honour to receive the Making a Difference Award from the Anti-Defamation Commission. We have made so much progress in the fight for transgender rights, but there is still a long way to go. Our combined efforts will hopefully bring about the change in laws and acceptance that we need to progress as a society.”

The Anti-Defamation Commission, founded in 1979, is Australia’s leading civil rights organization fighting racism through educational programs that combat bigotry, prejudice and all forms of hatred.

For further information please contact Dr Dvir Abramovich on (03) 9272 5677.

Georgie Stone and Dvir Abramovich

Posted in GLBTIQ, Human Rights, Youth | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Responses in the AJN to Bill Leak’s “Waffen-SSM” cartoon

A selection of responses to Bill Leak’s Waffen-SSM cartoon that were published in the Australian Jewish News.  Click on each to enlarge.

Leak's SS and SSM comparison repulsive

“Leak’s SS and SSM comparison ‘repulsive'” by Yael Brender (Sep 30, 2016)

Geoff Bloch letter

Letter by Geoff Bloch (Oct 14, 2016)

Paul Winter letter

Letter by Paul Winter (Oct 21, 2016)

Gregory Storer letter (part 1)

Letter by Gregory Storer (part 1) (Oct 28, 2016)

Gregory Storer letter (part 2)

Letter by Gregory Storer (part 2) (Oct 28, 2016)

Protecting minorities

IT’S a bit rich for Paul Winter (AJN 21/10) to talk about society only protecting noisy, aggressive minorities subverting democracy.

Part of our democratic society is to protest about things we see as wrong. Signalling disapproval to a supplier, such as a hotel, is a legitimate way to make it known that you disapprove of their business practices.  Threatening people is never acceptable and every protest has those on the fringe.  It’s unfair to suggest that all protesters hold the same opinions or use the same actions.  Similarly, overlooking that a vast majority of Australians support marriage equality and that it’s a small minority of religious people who object is to ignore reality.

As a society we must look after our minorities and listen to their needs so that people aren’t simply ignored or regarded as insignificant.  The gay population is about two per cent, while the Jewish population is around 0.5 per cent.

Minorities always struggle to have their plight seen as important by the larger population and struggle to gain recognition and relevance in a world that mostly considers minorities unimportant.

In his letter, Geoff Bloch (AJN 14/10) downplays the obvious Nazi connections with the Leak cartoon.  He said that the cartoon did not depict marriage equality advocates as Nazis, seeming to avoid the only words written on the cartoon “Waffen-SSM”.

Speaking as a man who is gay, I found Leak’s cartoon to be in extremely bad taste and Bloch’s letter equally objectionable.

Carnegie, Vic

Posted in GLBTIQ, Human Rights, Politics | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment