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Past and Present of Jewish Romania


Natalia Gross & Cristian Ezri

The Romanian Jewish Community was one of the largest before WWII, with a very interesting mix of cultures, traditions and languages, based on the three areas of Romania: Transylvania, Moldavia & Wallachia.

In a country of spectacle, with sea and mountains, with Dracula & kings, with minorities living together in peace and not so peacefully, we had Hungarian-speaking Jews alongside Yiddish and Romanian speakers. They were Neologue, orthodox, ultra-orthodox, and reform.

Find out some of the historical facts and legends of the community, and the eclecticism of the scenery where Judaism could have been long gone. Even though neither of us lived a Jewish life growing up in Transylvania, we are now Shabbath and kashrut observants in the capital Bucharest. Discover our life story, and our goal to keep Judaism alive, while being fully involved in the secular society.

$18 Admission
Natalia Gross & Cristian Ezri
Natalia Gross is a PR and Law graduate, Masa & Taglit alumna, currently heading the marketing & communications operations for Knight Frank Romania, Hungary, Bulgaria, Greece and Serbia. Being involved with the Jewish community for many years now, she started as a guide in the first ever Holocaust Museum in Romania (Simleu Silvaniei) and then coordinating JCC activities in Cluj Napoca, the biggest city in Transylvania, while completing her university studies. She has participated in numerous camps as a madricha, both in Romania and in Szarvas (Hungary), and has been an on-going volunteer for most of the Jewish events happening in Romania in the past 15 years. Cristian Ezri, regarded by some as a citizen of the world, has lived for long periods in Austria, the US and Israel and has worked on short term projects in over 10 Central Eastern European countries. His educational background includes a BA in computer science and an MA in Intercultural Management & Leadership. Currently he works as a banker, and has a long history of involvement with the Jewish community in his capacity as the former president of local Jewish youth movement and founding member & director of the first Jewish Community Center of Romania.

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