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kveller q&a

Meet the Woman Behind the New Web Series on Dating in the Orthodox Jewish World

Soon By You - Episode 1: The Setup

Many of us have been there before. You remember–that time when everyone in your life (especially your mom) is concerned about the fact that you’re single–which means, there’s no plans for grandkids happening any time soon? While you may be past that stage now, it doesn’t mean you can’t look back and laugh.

And now you can with a brand-spanking new web series called “Soon By You,” which focuses on six young, single Orthodox Jewish hopefuls trying to find love in New York City. Leah Gottfried is the Orthodox Jewish woman behind the show, as she wrote, produced, directed, and acted in the first episode, “The Setup.”

The episode was screened at the NewFilmmakers New York Film Festival and won Best Short at the Washington Jewish Film Festival. Now, Gottfried and her team have partnered with the Jewish Entertainment Network of Los Angeles as a way to find to sponsors and advertisers for future episodes.

I was thrilled to be able to speak with Gottfried about why she created the “Friends”-esque series, what her weirdest date was, and the least favorite part of her day:

What prompted you to create your new comedy series? Was it difficult to do?

I’m a big fan of the Israeli TV show “Srugim” which was an inspiration to me in creating “Soon By You.” I also just wanted to see Orthodox Jews like myself portrayed authentically in the media and have fun with the concept of dating in the Modern Orthodox world.

It was, and is, difficult, but I think it would be more difficult not to. I’ve come to love these characters and feel like I have to keep telling their stories.

Tell us a funny/weird dating story that has happened to you.

I once went on a date to a really nice jazz club, but as soon as we sat down, they made an announcement that there was no talking allowed while the band played. Every time we tried to talk, we would get shushed. So we sat there for two hours not getting to know each other.

If you could be anyone or anything, just for one day, what would you be?

A wild horse.

What TV show have you binge watched?

“30 Rock.” And also “Gilmore Girls” multiple times.

Biggest pet peeve:

Negativity. Also people who walk slowly in New York City.

If you were a Jewish holiday, which one would you be?

Passover. I love the sense of renewing our freedom and also, equally, because I am gluten-free.

What’s your least favorite children’s movie?

“Pinocchio.”

What’s the first thing you do in the morning?

I wish I could answer “yoga” or “pray,” but really, I check my phone and email first thing.

What is the first website you check?

Usually Facebook, but these days, I check the YouTube page for our first episode to see how many views we have!

Least favorite part of your day:

Cooking. I like eating, but tend to burn things.

Check out the first episode below:


Read More: 

9 Surprising Women Who Are (Or Were Raised) Orthodox Jewish

I Fed My Kid Only Candy For a Day & This is What Happened

Why I Worry About Other Kids’ Food Allergies


The opinions expressed here are the personal views of the author. Comments are moderated, so use your inside voices, keep your hands to yourself, and no, we're not interested in herbal supplements.

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