Hadassah fundraiser to feature ‘Funny Girl’


“Hello Gorgeous.”

Do you remember these famous first words from a smash hit of yesteryear? They were uttered by Barbra Streisand 50 years ago in the film “Funny Girl.”   

In that era, Jewish women were often depicted as dependent upon men, but Streisand shattered that glass ceiling by portraying Jewish women as smart, funny, beautiful and talented.

Today, Hadassah represents “The Power of Women Who Do,” and, consistent with that message, the Rhode Island Chapter is sponsoring a special showing of “Funny Girl” to honor the memory of its very own funny girl, Merry Drench.

Much as Streisand was a star in movies and song, Drench was a star in Hadassah, holding many positions and sharing her own special kind of comedic talent during her decades of service to the organization. Sadly, Drench lost her courageous battle with brain cancer five years ago, and she is missed.

All proceeds from the Merry Drench “Cause for Applause” fundraiser will go to the Leslie and Michael Gaffin Molecular Neuro-Oncology Laboratory, in Jerusalem, where scientists are conducting a number of drug trials on brain cancer and other diseases, including leukemia and lymphoma. A recent finding that the drugs used to treat prostate cancer are also efficient in killing brain tumor cells is bringing new hope to patients.

The fundraiser, a special showing of the movie “Funny Girl,” will be held on Sunday, May 6, at 2 p.m. at Temple Torat Yisrael, 1251 Middle Road, East Greenwich. This temple offers the perfect venue to greet old friends and make new ones while supporting the eradication of brain cancer and other deadly diseases.

A dessert reception will follow the movie.

This event would make a perfect Mother’s Day gift. Men are also most welcome!

Tickets start at the double Chai level of $36. Please send your check, payable to Hadassah, to Judy Silverman, 50 Cindyann Drive, East Greenwich, RI 02818. Additional information can be found on the Hadassah Rhode Island website, bit.ly/2pxAZ30.

If you need a ride, call Barbara Portney at 401-935-2052.