I subscribed to MAKO TV on my tablet and have discovered many TV shows and films in Hebrew from Israel. Through Chrome Cast I can watch the shows on TV in New Jersey as if I am in Israel.
"Thou Shall Not Dance" - is a 2011 documentary that I stumbled across on MAKO about Religious Jews who study modern dance in Jerusalem.
The premise of the film is that this is daring because religious Jews are not permitted to dance. To be technical about this, if you have ever been at a Jewish wedding you know that's not true. Men dance, women dance, not together, but there is a lot of dancing. Maybe not great quality. Also on Simchat Torah Jews dance.
Still there is a lot of struggle depicted in the film since these men decided to take up dance as an art for its own sake.
And yes, there is the big issue of Orthodox gender segregation that gets put on the table by telling this story about three men. They take as a given that they will not mix genders in their dancing because they are holding on to their Orthodox premises - paramount among those is the separation of the sexes. It was uncomfortable to me and odd to watch the struggle of these individuals within narrow constraints of their religion and culture as they grappled with their natural inherent needs to be artistic and expressive and to perform.
Israel 2011, Documentary 50 min
Directors: Eyal Sela, Yochai Shalom Hadad
Producers: Zafrir Kochanovsky , Miri Ezra
This illuminating documentary explores the obstacles faced by three Orthodox men who establish a dance school for religious males. The sensual nature of dance, particularly in a public forum, poses a unique challenge to those who live in a community where modesty is valued as the highest virtue. The film chronicles the struggles experienced by three dancers, as they try to reconcile their desire to express themselves physically while still maintaining an Orthodox life.
"Thou Shall Not Dance" is a heartfelt documentary about Religious Jews living in Jerusalem, who choose - despite a personal and social price they pay - to express themselves through dance. This is the 4 minute official trailer for the film.
רציתי לשתף אותך: קבוצה של דתיים אדוקים מקימה בית ספר למחול
See the whole 50 minute film (with random ads) on MAKO TV.