Donors, Heroes and Actors Celebrate ‘Chutzpah’

Donors, Heroes and Actors Celebrate ‘Chutzpah’

The Chutzpah exhibition at The Breman Museum portrays how courage and strength can make a difference in the lives of others.

After 37 years with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and now with the AJT, , Jaffe’s focus is lifestyle, art, dining, fashion, and community events with emphasis on Jewish movers and shakers.

Billie Feinman, Lois Blonder and Marlene Schwartz enjoy the perfect weather.
Billie Feinman, Lois Blonder and Marlene Schwartz enjoy the perfect weather.

Watching the Oscars at home played second fiddle to the local stars gathered on Spring St. to celebrate the 25th anniversary of The Breman Museum on Mar. 27.

The event co-chair, Lois Blonder, summed it up, “As with everything in life, some things are worth waiting for. Because of COVID’s postponement, third time’s a winner.” Greeting guests was David Schendowich, The Breman’s director of Marketing and Communications, who said, “200 supporters are gathered under our outdoor tent. The weather is amazing. Bring your chutzpah! Get ready for theatrical performers acting out stories of Southern Jewish history.”

The Chutzpah exhibition portrays how courage and strength can make a difference in the lives of others. The premier level “History with Chutzpah” exhibit donors was The Walter and Frances Bunzl Family Foundation. From 1733 to present, stories of inspiring Jews from Alabama and Georgia were selected from the museum’s archives to result in 250 exhibits.

Carol Breman Nemo chatted with David Sarnat about her father’s gift to establish the museum.

Chatting during the cocktail hour, supporter Judith Taylor commented, “25 years is so exciting. It’s like watching a child grow up before your very eyes.” Co-chairs Lois Blonder, Joyce Shlesinger, and Spring Asher admired the work in getting to this place in time.

Asher said, “This all about getting back together after a long while and of course, the Breman.” Shlesinger echoed, “This represents 25 years of building a wonderful Jewish Museum centered around the Holocaust.” Artsy doyenne Elaine Gutenstein said, “It’s my privilege to serve as a docent here. The stories depicted inside document that we have to learn and grow and follow up as our generation’s responsibility to speak up.”

Guests were encouraged to enter the building to tour the formal Chutzpah Exhibit before and after entering the text. The highlight of the evening was some of the luminaries featured in the exhibition were enacted in theatrical vignettes on an elevated stage. Cecil Alexander, Asher Benator, Erwin Zaban, Irving and Marvin Goldstein, Sam Greenblatt, Ben Hirsch, Evelyn Howren, Dr. Samuel Nunez, Rabbi Jacob Rothschild, Dr. Nanette Wenger, Dr. Perry Brickman and Janice Rothschild Blumberg, were portrayed by seven rotating actors in costume. The latter three were present, while others like Drs. Ron and Ken Goldstein represented their deceased family honorees.

Lizzie Lack reported on the $1.6 million raised for the 25th anniversary.

The formal part of the program began with The Breman’s Board Chairman Adam Koplan, extolling how the first Jews in Georgia were part of the new world order with their mind-blowing stories, and laughed, “I bet they never saw food that looked like this display tonight.” The museum’s director of development, Lizzie Lack boasted about the $1.6 million raised for the anniversary campaign. A five-minute video was shown about the eponymous Bill Breman and his willingness to contribute to greater visions.

Later his daughter Carol Breman Nemo chatted privately with the AJT and former Jewish Federation Executive Director, David Sarnat, about his lunch at the now defunct Coach ‘N Six restaurant, where the latter asked William Breman for the donation to build the museum initially planned atop the former Federation Building on Peachtree. Sarnat glowed and immediately said, “Yes. He was just like that in his generosity.”

Costumed actors performed 12 theatrical vignettes.

The Breman Executive Director, Leslie Gordon recounted to the crowd how the museum had to adapt alongside the pandemic. She continued, “We found ourselves in this new space using new tools. We had 21,000 virtual visitors and thousands of YouTube postings all engaged. But there are more exciting changes coming. Watch for our new look, and new logo. We’ve had an amazing 25 years. Now we focus on the next 25 years. Look for a bigger, bolder, brighter Breman Museum in the future!”

Go to to make plans to see the exhibit.

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