Life in Chelm—and other Jewish Stories

The Brothers Schlemiel Book Cover - illustration "The Blue House" by Marc Chagal

What kind of stories can connect generations and transmit joy?
Reform, Orthodox, Conservative,
Reconstructionist, Chabad, Unaffiliated, Blended…

“Mark Binder is a real person who tells real stories from the heart! He touches all ages with universal tales… He is a consummate professional, who entertains with ease and joy. Every time he has performed here at the Yiddish Book Center he has surprised and delighted our audiences.”
—Program Director, National Yiddish Book Center

When author and storyteller Mark Binder tells his tales, young and old people smile and laugh and sit on the edge of their chairs. His “Life in Chelm” book series includes Matzah Mishugas and A Hanukkah Present. Many of these stories were originally published in Jewish newspapers around the world. Mark’s novel,The Brothers Schlemiel, was initial serialized for two years in the Houston Jewish Herald.

“Mark was wonderful in every sense of the word.  His stories were heartwarming and engaging. Thank you Mark for spreading your unique brand of joy!”
— Rabbi Max Davis, Congregation B’nai Torah

Mark’s Menu of Delicious Jewish Events

Whether it’s a storytelling concert, an author visit, a holiday program, a workshop or a book signing, everyone in your organization will share a joyful experience.

cultural entertainment • family events • religious school programs
teen and adult education • senior engagement
stories of wisdom, food and foolishness • thematic stories for holidays
workshops, trainings and book signings
Ask about creating a new story or special program for you…
What do Mark’s events look like?  Click here for more info

For Booking Information…

Please contact Beth Hellman (, click here,
or call us at (401) 272-8707 to discuss possibilities.

Mark Binder’s Life in Chelm Bibliography

  • The Brothers Schlemiel: The epic novel of Chelm. Abraham and Adam Schlemiel are identical twins, born in the village of fools and confused from birth. Originally published in an abridged version by JPS (2008), this edition restores the complete text of the original 100 installment serialization and features a beautiful cover illustrated by Marc Chagal
  • A Hanukkah Present: Eleven original stories and a novella from the village of Chelm. Includes, “The Lethal Latkes” and the origin of “A Hanukkah Present.”
  • Matzah Mishugas: From the Mrs. Chaipul’s lead sinker matzah balls to the “Mega Matzah” here are eight original Passover stories from the village of Chelm that will delight readers and listeners of all ages.

Nu. Still can’t decide? Want to watch another video?

Want a quick quote?

Please contact us. We keep costs reasonable, but fees vary depending on your needs.

In an era of tight budgets, we want to assure you that Mark’s programs are 100% worthwhile. We offer a money-back guarantee. We do offer discounts on block bookings, and can help with grant writing and funding possibilities. Skype/Video visits can also offer a lower-cost pathway for Mark to visit.