Mishkan Chicago Collaborates with Performance and Film Artists to Produce Unique High Holiday Experience During Pandemic

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Join Rabbi Lizzie Heydemann of Mishkan Chicago as they merge ancient ritual with film, theater and music production to create unique programming for the 2020 Jewish New Year amid the Covid-19 pandemic. Mishkan will offer live streaming services on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, along with in-person events including a sing-a-long drive-in and shofar pop-ups across Chicagoland.

Mishkan’s 2020 High Holiday services were originally planned for the Auditorium Theatre in Chicago after selling out The Vic Theatre for the past two years. But the organization has quickly pivoted to create Covid-friendly programming for its 2500+ High Holiday worshippers.

Abby Cortrin, Rabbi Deena Cowans and Mishkan Chicag0 members film the traditional Torah parade through the streets of Chicago as an alternative to in person services. Photo courtesy of See3 Digital Events.

High Holiday Services

The services will feature socially-distant live music, asynchronously recorded prayers and songs from over 200 community members, sermons, guest speakers, family services, interactive chat features, and more. Registration, available to both past members and the general public is going on now. www.mishkanchicago.org/shabbat-holidays/high-holidays. Tickets cost $60 per individual ($36 for members) or $120 per household ($72 for members) for all services. Following registration, participants will receive a link to stream the services via Mishkan Chicago’s website.

Service Schedule

Erev Rosh Hashanah – Friday, September 18 at 7 pm
Rosh Hashanah (Day 1) – Saturday, September 19 at 9:30 am
Rosh Hashanah Family Services – Saturday, September 19 at 10:30 am
Kol Nidrei – Sunday, September 27 at 7 pm
Yom Kippur – Monday, September 28 at 9:30 am (daytime service) and 7:30 pm (Neilah and Havdallah)
Yom Kippur Family Services – Monday, September 28 at 10:30 am

Selichot Drive-In Sing-a-Long – Saturday, September 12 at 8 pm (MEMBERS ONLY)

This year, Mishkan Chicago is offering a drive-in sing-a-long! Participants will gather in cars at the Davis Theatre Pop-Up Drive-In at the Lincoln Yards Lot, 1684 N. Throop St. in Chicago. Each car will be assigned its own spot to ensure safety. All singing will take place inside vehicles, but Mishkan will share its music on the big screen. Food will be available for purchase from Ada Street restaurant. Due to space limitations, the sing-a-long is available to members only. Registration ($36 per car) begins Wednesday, August 19 at www.mishkanchicago.org/shabbat-holidays/high-holidays. Don’t have a car? Free streaming is also available online for both members and the general public.

Shofar Pop-Ups on Rosh Hashanah afternoon – Saturday, September 19 at 5:30 pm (FREE)


Charlie Shuchat welcomes the Jewish New Year by blowing the shofar. Mishkan Chicago will host five shofar pop-ups across Chicagoland. Photo courtesy of See3 Digital Events.

Mishkan Chicago will blow the shofar at five outdoor pop-up locations across Chicagoland, ensuring everyone can remain safe and socially-distant. Following the shofar blasts, participants are invited to a socially distant, immersive ritual of Taslich, where participants symbolically cast off past mistakes and bad vibes in anticipation of the New Year. Masks will be required and hand sanitizer will be made available. Shofar pop-ups are free and open to the public, however advance registration is required at www.mishkanchicago.org/shabbat-holidays/high-holidays

Shofar Pop-Up Locations

Arrington Lagoon at Dawes Park, 1631 Sheridan Rd., Evanston
Horner Park, North Center, 2741 W. Montrose Ave., Chicago
Grant Park, Buckingham Fountain, Downtown Chicago
Humboldt Park, Sledding Hill, Bunker Hill, Kedzie Ave., Humboldt Park, Chicago
North Pond Nature Sanctuary, 2610 N. Cannon Dr., Lincoln Park, Chicago

About Mishkan Chicago

Mishkan Chicago is a Jewish spiritual community that leads people toward more purposeful, more connected, and more inspired lives. We create Jewish spaces to bring your whole self, and to be part of something larger than yourself. Not bound by a particular location (even before the pandemic!) we create radically inclusive spaces for Jewish spiritual practice and community, engaging, educating, and empowering people across the spectrum of identity, background, age, and belief.

Started in a living room on Shabbat in 2011 by Rabbi Lizzi Heydemann, Mishkan Chicago now reaches over 5000 individuals each year through our weekly Shabbat services, holiday celebrations, classes, and small groups. Our quick pivot during the pandemic has allowed us to reach thousands more online via livestreams on Facebook, Zoom holidays and classes, our podcast and our Soundcloud. With close to half of our members under the age of 40, we lead people across a spectrum of identity, background, age, and belief toward more purposeful, more connected, and more inspired lives.




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