Ongoing @ PUP

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Intro to Judaism

Faith @ PUP

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Thank You

The Sanctuary@Pico Union is proudly supported by:

The Jewish Community Foundation Los Angeles

The Max Factor Family Foundation

Service with a smile: Synagogue rethinks the High Holy Days

To underwrite a dynamic series of High Holiday programs, Pico Union Project (PUP) launched a wildly successful crowdfunding campaign this summer. In less than two months, donations totaled more than $62,000, supporting a wide range of creative events including teen services, meditative stitching and innovative services with musician Craig Taubman, PUP’s founder and artistic director.

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Dr. Zach Lasker Appointed Pioneering Executive Director of Pico Union Project

Multi-faith cultural arts center takes next step in building a spiritual center in historic downtown building

Media Contact:
Cassandra Alexander 818.760.1077

Zach LaskerThe Pico Union Project is excited to announce the appointment of Dr. Zach Lasker as the center’s inaugural Executive Director.  Zach will bring his experience in leadership, creative innovation, and organizational management to grow the Pico Union Project into a leading center for multi-faith spiritual expression, cultural arts, and community engagement.

Founded in 2013 by visionary recording artist and community organizer Craig Taubman the Pico Union Project strives to invigorate the community of Los Angeles and reflect the Jewish value to love your neighbor as yourself. “Exciting transitions demand exciting leadership” commented Craig Taubman.  “Zach’s focus, passion and background are exactly what we need to fulfill our mission of being a light in the community.”

Zach is a product of the Los Angeles Jewish community and recognized as a leading educator and community activist.  During his fifteen years at Camp Ramah in California Zach started as a counselor and song leader and rose to Camp Director where he had the opportunity to work with an entire generation of campers and staff members.   Zach left Los Angeles in 2012 to assume a position at The Jewish Theological Seminary in New York as Director of Melton Research & Education Projects.

“I am honored to join a team of creative and inspired leaders who are navigating a new course for spiritual and cultural engagement. Our community needs more space for people to encounter the rich textures of Judaism and other religions and cultures in a setting that is inclusive and experimental,” said Zach.

“Zach Lasker is joining us at a very exciting time” stated Ellen Silverman, board chair of the Pico Union Project. “His passion for our mission and community, coupled with his experience to innovate, make him an ideal partner“.

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For further information about Zach or the Pico Union Project contact Cassandra at the Pico Union Project 818.760.1077 or  

ABOUT PICO UNION PROJECT Originally built by Sinai Temple in 1909, the Pico Union is the oldest synagogue building in Los Angeles. The Pico Union Project is a multi-faith cultural arts center dedicated to the Jewish principle to “love your neighbor as yourself.” We elevate this teaching into practice by bringing diverse cultures together through song, story, art, food and prayer. We partner with like-minded organizations and community leaders to help reinvigorate our neighborhood in downtown Los Angeles reflecting the Jewish value to be a light to all nations.

Myron Gordon and Samuel E. Goldfarb: A musical bridge between father and son

goldfarb-press-250Jewish Journal – April 6, 2016

Every Jew worth his weight in latkes knows “I Have a Little Dreidel,” aka “The Dreidel Song,” but Myron Gordon knows the holiday ditty better than most. That song, written nearly 90 years ago by his father, Samuel E. Goldfarb, has become both a family legacy and a bridge to a kind of personal healing.

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Local News Covers Rosh Hashanah at the Sanctuary at Pico Union

Shout out to the Sanctuary at Pico Union in L.A. Magazine

sanctuaryatpu-worship-250Watch the Rousing, Surprising Start to the First Jewish Service at Downtown’s Multi-Faith Sanctuary, the Pico-Union Project

L.A. Magazine
September, 2015

Sanctuary@Pico Union looks to engage and enlighten

Jewish Journal – August 2015

The Sanctuary at Pico UnionWith the launch of the Sanctuary@Pico Union next month, Craig Taubman — the singer / songwriter who co-founded Sinai Temple’s influential “Friday Night Live” services — aims to bring Jewish congregational life to a venue that has not seen any in nearly a century.

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Reaching the Choir – LA Magazine

LA magazine articleLA Magazine featured an article about the interfaith nature of the Pico Union Project. (Click image to enlarge)



LA Magazine at Pico Union Project

womenthumbLA Magazine recently came to Craig’s Pico Union Project to interview him about the basis of his multi faith, multicultural house of worship. Reporter Shayna Rose Arnold did a great job capturing the importance of PUP and of Craig’s vision for the non-profit. Read more here.

Pico Union Project featured on JTA Website

At historic L.A. synagogue, songwriter pushes interfaith harmony and urban renewal
On the first floor of the Pico Union Project, members of the Women’s Mosque of America are preparing the historic sanctuary for prayers, spreading long bolts of cloth on the floor, hanging a banner from the organ loft and placing an open copy of the Koran in the just-vacated Holy Ark. Outside, news crews — including one from an Italian television station — have gathered to document this gathering of the mosque, reportedly the first women’s mosque in America and already the subject of international headlines. Across the street, police officers monitor the situation, just in case. On the second floor, with the Torah just taken from the ark leaned against a wall nearby, Craig Taubman ruefully considers the flurry of activity.

“It’s just people praying,” he says with exasperation. “Why is this such a big deal?” [Read the entire article on the JTA Website.]

Shabbat at the Ford 2014 – Jewish Journal Review

Los Angeles Jewish Journal – September, 2014

On Friday, August 29, Cantor Craig Taubman hosted his fourth annual Shabbat at the Ford, which took place at the historic Ford Amphitheater. The open-air venue was the perfect setting for such an event. “It’s the summer for gosh sakes,” remarked Taubman, and it sure felt like it, with sweltering temperatures reaching the 90s by mid-day.

At 6 pm, the event kickstarted in the theater’s courtyard with a picnic-style BYOK (Bring Your Own Kiddush). Families and friends shared makeshift Shabbat meals served in tupperware containers while they sipped two buck chuck from plastic cups. The overall mood was easy and relaxed as klezmer-revivalist band Mostly Kosher serenaded the crowd.

Read the full article on the Jewish Journal Website.

Pioneering Israeli Musician Idan Raichel to Headline Benefit for The Pico Union Project

Pioneering Israeli Musician Idan Raichel to Headline Benefit for The Pico Union Project Multi-faith Cultural Arts Center is Latest Brainchild from Friday Night Live Co-Creator Craig Taubman. Click here to download the Press Release. (pdf)

The new Jews of L.A: Where David Broza sings and Korean church-goers Pray

HaAretz – March 7, 2014

Meet the free-thinking Jewish musician who created a new kind of interfaith center in the heart of L.A. When you enter the Pico-Union Project in the heart of downtown L.A., you don’t know exactly what you are walking into.

Continue reading The new Jews of L.A: Where David Broza sings and Korean church-goers Pray