The horrific possibility that the Nazis turned Jews into soap is the catalyst for The Soap Myth, a play by Jeff Cohen. Cohen’s lead characters, a survivor and a young investigative journalist, go on a collision course to ascertain how much fact is needed for something not to be fiction.
From The New York Times: When an Atrocity Lacks Documentation, and Truth Is Hard to Prove
From The Culture Catch: The Power of Myth
From The Philadelphia Jewish Voice: “Unreliable Memories” and the Holocaust
From History News Network: The Soap Myth Does Not Cleanse the Nazis or Holocaust
From New Jersey Jewish Standard: Reworked play ‘nails it’ in portraying survivor archetypes
Thursday, December 17, 2009
Based on The Rothschilds by Frederic Morton, it tells of the rise of the Rothschild family from humble beginnings in Germany, to their founding of their financial empire and growing political influence under the guidance of patriarch Mayer Rothschild, to their assistance in funding Napoleon's defeat, and how they secure a declaration of rights for European Jews in the midst of an oppressive era. The Rothschilds was the last collaboration between Bock and Harnick. The show won a Tony Award for its original star Hal Linden.
Dear Friend and Theater Lover,
I am proud to lend my name and endorsement in support of a wonderful new initiative, the National Jewish Theater and the American Theater Festival.
The newly founded not-for-profit National Jewish Theater (NJT) will celebrate and preserve the genius and cultural significance of important Jewish theatrical artists and productions highlighting Jewish American composers, lyricists and playwrights of musical theater, drama and comedy.
Thursday, December 18, 2006
The Sue ad Leonard Miller Center for Contemporary Jewish Studies is committed to supporting innovative efforts that further our mission and make a significant contribution to the academic and non-acedemic communities....
... We look forward to our potential collaboration and heartily endorse the emergence of a National Jewish Theater under your leadership ....
Posted March, 2008
launch of the National Jewish Theater and American Theater Festival was a
resounding success. Leading with the musical The Soul of Gershwin, Arnold
Mittelman's theatrical rebirth drew some of South Florida's most influential
people. The legendary performer of stage and screen, Jack Klugman, came to
town to help Arnold introduce these latest ventures. On hand at the Saturday
night performance were Harvey and Roberta Chaplin. Harvey was honored for his
longtime commitment to philanthropy, and is one of the founding donors to the
National Jewish Theater and American Theater Festival.
Photo by John Anderson
(l-r)Arnold Mittelman, Susann Green, Peggy Crosby, Jack Klugman, Roberta & Harvey Chaplin
For more photos, Click Here
David Cooper, New York Jewish Examiner
If this review seems spare it’s because I hope you’ll see Motti Lerner’s play Hard Love (either Wednesday afternoon or Thursday evening) and want to keep spoilers to a minimum. Hanna and Zvi divorced 20 years ago when Zvi became an atheist and left their Ultra-Orthodox community. When the children they each had in their second marriages start dating they meet again which leads them to discuss their marriage and its ending.
The themes Hard Love examines include both the religious-secular divide in Israeli society and the compromises that are necessary in any marriage. The latter theme in particular gives the play its emotional depth and power; Zvi is too emotionally wounded to meet Hanna half-way. Zvi is haunted by God; his professed atheism seems like an attempt to flee a God he blames but can never elude. I am personally acquainted with several couples who agree to disagree on matters of religion, but none of them are Ultra-Orthodox, and all of them are psychologically whole and emotionally secure enough to accommodate a partner’s differences.
Hanna and Zvi are the only characters that actually appear on stage, and Mira Hirsch and David Marshall Silverman give very strong performances. The play’s two acts (between which there is a ten minute intermission) mirror each other in reverse.