In “Le Mood” for a new approach

Leadership doesn’t always stem from an individual. Sometimes, it arises through the progressive, forward-thinking initiatives undertaken by an organization. We’ve witnessed this first-hand with the creation of both the wildly successful LE MOOD Festival, as well as the upstart learning portal –, which is poised to launch later this month.

For the former, nearly 1,000 eager minds showed up at Espace Réunion last month to celebrate the second annual Jewish learning festival. Building upon its success from last year, the 2012 edition enjoyed a large spike in both attendance and presentations, proving to all what we already knew to be true: That we are in the midst of a Jewish renewal, characterized by passionate Jews who thirst for knowledge, and crave for more forums to share it.

As both a volunteer and avid participant of the LE MOOD festival, Aliza Perez gives us her take.

Aliza at LE MOOD with Shai Haddad, a.k.a. hip hop artist SHI 360

Young adults today have different priorities, most of which do not include Judaism or anything related to it. However, being that Montreal does have such a diverse Jewish community, amazing Jewish organizations and dedicated volunteers, the LE MOOD franchise is a different approach to Judaism that engages today’s Jewish population in Montreal in a way that none other can.

The fact that so many Jews of different backgrounds were in attendance and that everyone seemed to enjoy themselves truly touches me deep in my soul. It’s this that makes me proud to be a Jew in Montreal. We are so lucky to have such a diverse community and a way for each group to unite under one roof, even if for just a day, and learn from each other.

As a volunteer at this year’s event, and a participant in some of the sessions, I feel I really got the true LE MOOD experience.  Working with the amazing organizers and alongside other dedicated volunteers, I truly felt a part of something spectacular. The effort and hard work that each and every person put into LE MOOD was absolutely incredible and quite evident.


number of sessions at
the 2012 LE MOOD festival

The session that stood out the most, in my opinion, was run by Jeffrey Yoskowitz, founder of the Gefilteria in Brooklyn, New York, where an old world tradition of gefilte fish, fermented vegetables, and other nostalgic goodies is revived daily. My grandmother accompanied me for the day, and the twinkle in her eye and smile on her face as she learned the art of fermenting cucumbers, was definitely worth walking away smelling of pickles.

You can find more information about LE MOOD at

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