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Save the Date, Dec. 13, for Our Year-End Benefit Comedy Show

On Saturday, December 13th, 2014, the Levantine Cultural Center will hold its year-end comedy benefit show with the New Sultans of Satire at the Carpenter Performing Arts Center, in Long Beach. With a special tribute to Robin Williams, this evening brings together the top young Middle Eastern comedians at work together, including Aron Kader (Comedy Central's "Axis of Evil"), Tehran, Sammy Obeid, Marie-Thérèse Abou-Daoud, Sherwin Arae and Melissa Shoshahi. The Levantine Cultural will donate a portion of the proceeds to Kinder USA (Kids in Need of Development, Education, and Relief) to help deserving children in Gaza with medical needs following the summer war. The Levantine Cultural Center works to bridge political and religious divides that may exist between Americans and the Middle East/North Africa, by presenting arts and education programs in the spirit of exploration, discovery and unity.

Proceeds benefit the Levantine Cultural Center, a 501(c)3 founded 13 years ago as a grassroots nonprofit organization that champions a greater understanding of the Middle East/North Africa and our communities in diaspora.

Deep Soul with Delil Dilanar, Yuval Ron and Jamie Papish

Event Details
Aug 2 2014 8:00pm - 10:30pm
Tickets $20 General Admission
$30 Preferred Reserved seating (limited front rows)
$25 day-of/at the door
Seating limited, RSVPs strongly advised: 323.413.2001
Click here to reserve seats
Levantine Center at the Westwood Hills Church
1989 Westwood Blvd
Los Angeles CA 90025
At La Grange between Olympic & Santa Monica Blvds.
Free lot and street parking
an intimate, soulful concert of Kurdish and Mizrahi music

Deep Soul is an intimate evening of soulful Kurdish and Mizrahi music with Kurdish master musician Delil Dilanar (Voice, Duduk, Tambour) in a rare Los Angeles appearance with Yuval Ron (Oud, Saz and vocals) and Jamie Papish on percussion. This concert in a poetic spirit includes lyrics in Kurdish, Hebrew and Arabic and is dedicated to a more pacific Middle East.

Presented by the Levantine Cultural Center, with media support from KPFK Pacifica radio, 90.7 FM, and Niroj Levantine Cuisine, Deep Soul takes place at the Westwood Hills Congregational Church, 1989 Westwood Blvd., Los Angeles CA 90025. Free lot and street parking. Tickets $20 General Admission, $30 Preferred Reserved seating, $25 day-of/at the door.

Seating is limited, advance purchase advised, call 323.413.2001.

L.A.'s Middle East Cultural Arts Center Fêtes 12th Year!

our new fiscal year starts July 1st, we seek your support

Can you believe it?!

We are just starting our 12th year serving greater Los Angeles. Don Heckman wrote the first LA Times article about us, positively reviewing our first public program, in a Calendar review published June 25, 2001. (We received another thumbs-up review in December 2001 by theatre critic Don Shirley and many more LA Times articles since.) 

Jack G. Shaheen remembers 40 years of deconstrcting Arab sterotypes

Deconstructing stereotypes: Jack G. Shaheen remembers 40 years
of commitment to positive Arab and US
understanding in evening lecture

[Monday December 10, 2012] On Wednesday December 19th, The Levantine Cultural Center presents honored media critic and film scholar Dr. Jack G. Shaheen in an intimate discussion and forum on misleading stereotypes based on Hollywood's negative portrayal of Arabs. Shaheen will be discussing his life-long commitment to illuminate social justice, with insights into the highs and lows of his 40-year quest, including his mission to reveal and terminate these damaging Arab and Muslim stigmas.

"A is For Arab" Displays ABCs of American Media & Pop Culture Stereotypes

For Immediate Release
Please Contact Kameron Myles
DEC. 1-31, 2012, RECEPTION DEC. 19, 7 PM

WHO: Jack G. Shaheen, media activist
WHERE: Levantine Cultural Center, 5998 W. Pico Blvd., LA 90035, street parking.
PRICE: Free to general public
INFO/RSVPs: Levantine Cultural Center, 323.413.2001,

[Los Angeles-Monday November 27, 2012] Beginning Saturday, December 1st, the Levantine Cultural Center presents a fascinating new exhibit based on the work of film and media scholar Dr. Jack G. Shaheen's work: A is for Arab: Stereotypes in U.S. Popular Culture.

A New Novel Captures Life in Los Angeles and Beirut

Reviewed By Jordan Elgrably

[This Angelic Land, a novel by Aris Janigian, West of West Books, 2012]

Do you remember the early ‘90s in Los Angeles? Between the riots, the Northridge earthquake, OJ Simpson and the Malibu mudslides, it became an apocalyptic landscape, at once horrific, beautiful, and unforgettable.

Not unlike Beirut during its civil war, 1975-1990.

This Angelic Land: a novel by Aris JanigianThis Angelic Land: a novel by Aris Janigian

This Angelic Land is a novel set in Los Angeles during the 1992 Rodney King riots—the largest, most destructive civil uprising in American history. Adam Derderian, the central protagonist, is a 27-year-old Lebanese Armenian bar owner. The narrative shifts back and forth from his perspective to that of his brother, a New York-based artist five years his senior. The backdrop is their youth during the Lebanese civil war in Beirut—one of the longest civil wars in modern history.

Levantine Friends & Family Annual BBQ Picnic

Event Details
Jun 24 2012 12:00pm - 6:00pm
Free, parking $6 per car (carpooling recommended)
Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area, Blue Picnic Area
4100 S. La Cienega Blvd.
Los Angeles, Ca. 90056
2 minutes south of the Target at Rodeo and La Cienega
share your culture, music, food and friendship with friends and family

Levantine Cultural Center invites you to join our annual friends and family barbeque picnic on Sunday, June 24, 2012 from noon to 6 pm at the beautiful Kenneth Hahn State Park, located just south of La Cienega Blvd. and Rodeo Road. You may bring food for the barbeque and dishes to share if you wish. The LCC will provide drinks, some food, and all the other functional items (plates, napkins, cups etc) including charcoal for the barbeques.

Tablet and Pen, New Anthology of Middle East Writing

Edited by Reza Aslan, the volume presents new and classic work, some of it in English for the first time

Reviewed by Jawad Ali

My Father's Paradise

Dreaming Fevered Dreams of the Past in Aramaic

Ariel Sabar, My Father's Paradise: A Son's Search for His Jewish Past in Kurdish Iraq (Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, 2008)

Reviewed by David Shasha

My Father's Paradise: your purchase in part benefits Levantine Cultural CenterMy Father's Paradise: your purchase in part benefits Levantine Cultural CenterTowards the end of Ariel Sabar's extraordinarily compelling retelling of his family's history in Iraqi Kurdistan, he makes a brilliant observation that encapsulates his tale and is emblematic of the broken stories of so many Middle Eastern Jews. Recalling his father's feverish memories of his fractured past-a past of rich traditions that were destroyed over the course of successive exiles-he states:

Dreams, I recalled now, had long been a refuge from his life's incongruities. During his first year in the United States, he once told me, he dreamed he was in New York, all alone in Grand Central Station. All at once, the train doors swept open and all of Zakho's Kurds poured out onto the platform. Dreams were a place where fragments could be made whole. (pp. 278-279)

Iraq in Pieces: Seven Years Later

Hadani Ditmars returns to find a broken Baghdad, still reeling from sectarian divisions and facing an uncertain future.
By Hadani Ditmars

I am back in Baghdad after seven years away.

Since 2003, a million people have died in Iraq in the wake of post-invasion violence. (1) Sectarian wars have torn the country apart, foreign troops have established huge military bases, and politicians who have sworn to crack down on militias have their own private armies. This once secular nation has been scarred by extremism, with terrible consequences for women, gay people and religious minorities. As government ministries remain feeding troughs for cronyism and sectarian patronage, national reconciliation remains elusive.