Israeli Stage's ULYSSES ON BOTTLES/Birthday Celebration
Israeli Stage's Ulysses on Bottles/Birthday Celebration
An American Premiere by Gilad Evron, A Staged Reading Directed by Guy Ben-Aharon; Sunday, November 18, 2012, at Goethe-Institut, 170 Beacon Street, Boston, MA; www.israelistage.com
Israeli Stage and Producing Artistic Director Guy Ben-Aharon celebrated the company's second birthday on Sunday, November 18, with a staged reading of Gilad Evron's powerful Ulysses on Bottles at Goethe-Institut in Boston. The American premiere featured an embarrassment of riches with Jeremiah Kissel, Johnny Lee Davenport, Will Lyman, and Karen MacDonald, all Elliot Norton Award-winners, and Samuel Dinnar rounding out the cast.
Ulysses on Bottles is the story of an Israeli-Arab literature teacher (Davenport) who gets arrested for attempting to bring books into Gaza from Israel, in defiance of the blockade. A successful Israeli lawyer (Kissel) defends him pro bono even while seeing the handwriting on the wall that his client is willing to sacrifice all for his cause. Lyman's character represents the power of the State of Israel to determine the quality of life of the Palestinians. Dinnar is an ambitious junior lawyer in the firm, and MacDonald plays Kissel's wife. Evron explores the many-faceted conundrum and the different responses Israelis have to the situation.
The mission of Israeli Stage is to expose audiences to the diversity and vitality of Israeli culture through producing the work of Israeli playwrights and theatre practitioners, with the vision to create greater understanding of the State of Israel and the Middle East. Ben-Aharon hopes to be able to mount a fully-staged production of Ulysses on Bottles in the future. In the meantime, Israeli Stage's next staged reading is Hand in Hand Together by A. B. Yehoshua, scheduled for Sunday, November 25, at 2 p.m. at Aviv Center for Living, 240 Lynnfield Street, Peabody, MA.