Our Other Most Frequently Asked Question:
What’s the Difference Between A Night to Remember
and A Different Night?
The first thing to know is that A Night to Remember is NOT a new edition of A Different Night. 95% of the art, commentaries, activities, and art is new.
The second thing to know is that they are still more similar than different. Both are non-scripted — no “Uncle Fred, now it’s your turn to read a paragraph.” Both start with the traditional seder structure, and add dozens of ideas to get everyone at the table involved — stories, explanations, discussion-starters, commentaries, meditations that expand on the themes of the text. If you liked A Different Night (ADN), you’re going to love A Night to Remember (NTR).
- Each is a full-text traditional haggadah.
- Each opens up the seder for family participation with wide range of extras that offers something to engage almost anyone.
- Each comes with an easy-to-use Seder Planner that helps you adapt your seder to the audience — pre-schoolers, school-age, teenagers, adults, or a combination.
- ADN is mostly black-and-white with 12 pages of color, while NTR is full-color throughout.
- ADN has a more-or-less linear layout, with basic texts and instructions on the right and stories, explanations, mini-essays on the left. NTR has a flashier Israeli layout, with more happening on the page; but the instructions (while in smaller type) are still easy to find and follow, always at far right of any spread.
- ADN (“The Family Participation Haggadah”) features many older traditional commentaries, midrash etc., as well as short pieces by the author who worked for many years on how to make a family-friendly seder. NTR (“The Haggadah of Contemporary Voices”) is by Mishael Zion, Noam’s son, and represents a new generation. It has mostly commentary from people who are living today or in recent times. NTR also offers a far more eclectic set of commentators: novelists, scholars and rabbis, poets, political leaders.
- ADN introduced the Symposium section, a set of six different discussions pulled from the text “Arami Oved Avi.” That’s the section that in most seders puts people to sleep; author Noam Zion proposed that each year, instead of reading the standard midrash, we choose one of six topics (Assimilation and Identity, Anti-Semitism and Prejudice, Ancient Egyptian Oppression, From Resignation to Resistance, Sexuality and Liberation, Suffering and its Lessons) and expound on it, using discussion-starter texts that the haggadah provides. NTR keeps the Symposium (but without detailed instructions); we choose one of four topics (Assimilation and Identity, Birth and Genocide, Oppression and Resistance, Women and Liberation) and expound on it, again using texts the haggadah provides.
- ADN also introduced the Four Children section, 21 different representations of the Four Children, from the 16th century to the 20th — not to mention a few more, and art-history explanations, in an appendix. (This section is probably the most important reason we have sold over 235,000 copies of ADN, classic and compact.) NTR does not have all of the art; but it has some new art, and new commentary, and excellent layout, and it’s all in color. In the end, I think it’s a wash; both are brilliant.
- ADN has a new Storytellers Supplement — 33 pages of great stories, collected by the author over the past 20 years. Use them in your seder, or just read for your own enrichment.
- Every order, for either book, comes with a Seder Planner. NTR planner adds pathways for a Children’s Seder, Women’s Seder, Storyteller’s Seder, Poetry, Rabbinical Wisdom, Discussions and Spiritual Exercises, and more.
- NTR has a more gender-neutral English translation. (So does ADN compact edition.) Hebrew is fully traditional in all cases.
- If you ask me . . . I think ADN may still be the best for a beginning seder leader. But NTR, with its more eclectic set of commentators, offers more that appeals to me today. For instance, I can’t imagine starting our seder without the poem by Marge Piercy, on page 18 of NTR. But my teenage daughter begs to differ: “Dad, why do we have to do that poem every year?” We have recently tended to use NTR both nights, or one night NTR and the other ADN.
- Bottom line: You won't go wrong with either. They are both incredibly rich books, accessible to [almost] anyone, at very good prices. You can also buy a couple copies of one and a table set of the other.
Visit the Art of the Four Children Gallery, from ADN: