Prolific writer, passionate activist, dedicated scholar and pioneering feminist, Esther Broner indelibly shaped modern Jewish history, and yet, most people have never heard of her. In the mid-1970s, as the women’s rights movement was vastly changing society’s views on gender and equality, Broner created a radical new Haggadah (the book of readings for a Passover seder service) for a new era, one that, while maintaining Jewish culture and rituals, shifted the focus onto women, transforming the traditional Passover service into a powerful reclamation of women’s lives and stories. What followed in 1975 was the first feminist women’s seder, which began as a small gathering to celebrate Passover with Broner as their leader and would blossom into a movement. One of the founding members of the seder, director/producer Lilly Rivlin (Grace Paley: Collected Shorts, SFJFF 2010) documents Broner’s rich and engaged political and spiritual life with archival photos, video footage from the seders themselves and interviews with Broner’s closest friends and original “seder mothers” such as Ms. magazine founder Gloria Steinem and congresswoman Bella Abzug. Woven together with Broner’s own moving words, this documentary is both an inspiring portrait of a feminist trailblazer and a testament to her legacy which has helped empower generations of Jewish women around the world.
Lilly Rivlin, a seventh generation Jerusalemite, trained as a plitical scientist at the University of California, Berkeley. She has worked as a consultant, journalist, writer, filmmaker both internationally and in the U.S.
Rivlin's film credits include writer/director/producer of three independent documentaries, GIMME A KISS (2000), MIRIAM'S DAUGHTER'S NOW (1986) and THE TRIBE (1984), shown on PBS, and Israeli and Italian TV; WE'RE STILL HERE !- The Jews of Russian and Ukraine (1999). I BELONG ELSEWHERE, TAMIR, A ONE WOMAN PLAY (1987) Her other credits include Associate Producer of EXPULSION AND MEMORY, a Canadian production about the Secret Jews, (1995) and FULL CIRCLE, a film about women on kibbutzim. (1995) She was Associate Producer/writer/resercher of IF NOT NOW WHEN, PEACE NOW, (1998) and producer/interviewer of several segments of Israel T.V.'s 18-part series on the historyof Zionism, PILLARS OF FIRE. (1983) She developed/researched/wrote, THE JEWS, a 13-part TV series, for David Puttnam and Sandy Lieberson, in London. (1970-72). Consultant, research and interview credits include ISRAEL: A NATION IS BORN, a 5-part series on Israel with Abba Eban (1990) and JEWS & THE DIASPORA, a BBC film.
Co-editor and contributor, WHICH LITITH? FEMINIST WRITERS RE-CREATE THE WORLD'S FIRST WOMAN, Jason Aronson, 1998. WHEN WILL THE FIGHTING STOP? A Child's View of Jerusalem, a photographic essay, Athenaeum, NY, 1990. Author, WELCOME TO ISRAEL, (a children's book) Behrman House Press, 2000.
Her writing and reserch credits include principle researcher on the best seller O JERUSALEM by Larry Collins and Dominque Lapierre, Simon and Schuster, 1972. Among the publications she has written for are NEWSWEEK, MS. MAGAZINE, THE WASHINGTON POST, LEAR'S and US Magazine.
NO TIES, a feature film, finalist in the Sundance Institute and the Eugene O'Neill Playwright Conference, twice optioned to Hollywood producers. (1984-86) revised, 1998
PUSHING THROUGH, a play which toured U.S. and England. Dramaturg and dialougue. (1991-94)
FEELING GOOD, a feature film. Belle Starr Productions. (1976)
MYSHKIN, a feature film. Commissioned by Dawasaki-Dronge. (1973)
CONSULTANT and VISTING PRESENTER
Arab-Israeli co-existence projects; Gender issues; Socio Drama/Conflict Resolution