A half-hour drive separates the ultra-Orthodox suburb of Bnei Brak from secular Tel Aviv. Yet nestled on Tel-Aviv’s Mediterranean beachfront, between wooden barricades, is a kosher beach that lies side-by-side with hotels, marinas and restaurants. It is the thrice-weekly destination for many of Bnei Brak’s inhabitants.
The hermetically sealed kosher beach is the world’s only same-sex beach. Women and men swim and sunbathe on separate and designated days. Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays are the days when an international Orthodox group of women gather. While Orthodox rabbis post prohibitions against the immorality of the beach, the excursions are deemed “holy” by the women who seek refuge there and a break from their daily lives.
Kosher Beach will tell the story of a sisterhood organized by the Rabbanit, or female Rabbi, Aidaleh Ravitz, known as “The Rabbi of the Sea.” Rain or shine, the sisterhood makes its way to the sealed-off beach. The women come from different societal factions and various Orthodox communities to seek companionship and a brief respite.
Karin Kainer’s and Hilla Medalia’s film is in production.
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