David Strathairn to Star in Staged Readings of 'MY REPORT TO THE WORLD'

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Oscar-Nominated David Strathairn will star in My Report to the World: The Story of Jan Karski. Presented as a staged workshop, the play recounts the astonishing and largely unknown story of Polish World War II hero and Holocaust witness Jan Karski.

Only five chances to see this life affirming experience at the Edmond J Safra Hall: the 375-seat theater at the Museum of Jewish Heritage - A Living Memorial to the Holocaust (36 Battery Place, NY). Performances, which are free of charge, take place July 15th at 1pm & 7:30pm, July 22 at 7pm, July 23 at 3pm, and July 25 at 9:30pm. For tickets, RSVP at http://www.mjhnyc.org/karski or call 646.437.4202. For group ticketing call 212-944-4058. Running time 90 minutes.

Performances are followed by panel discussions with Strathairn in conversation with leading scholars and journalists. Award winning author and journalist Andrew Nagorski will be a guest speaker following the July 15th evening performance; and Father Leo O'Donovan, former President of Georgetown University, will lead a post-show panel on July 22nd.

In addition to the New York run, there will be one free performance in Washington, DC in partnership with the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, on July 20th at 7:30 pm at the Shakespeare Theatre Company's Lansburgh Theatre. For tickets and information: http://jan-karski.eventbrite.com.

This unique theatrical event recounts the astonishing and largely unknown story of Polish

World War II hero and Holocaust witness Jan Karski (played by Strathairn.). An inspiring story of extraordinary heroism, Karski's deep courage faith, and remarkable humility are revealed through Strathairn's sensitive portrayal (including his uncanny resemblance to Karski.) The ensemble supporting Mr. Strathairn includes: Kersti Bryan, Nick Carriere, Connie Castanzo, Josh Landay, Mariko Parker, PJ Sosko, and Robbie Tann.

President Barack Obama awarded a posthumous Presidential Medal of Freedom to Karski, and said "We must tell our children about how this evil was allowed to happen - because so many people succumbed to their darkest instincts; because so many others stood silent. But let us also tell our children about the Righteous Among the Nations. Among them was Jan Karski - a young Polish Catholic - who witnessed Jews being put on cattle cars, who saw the killings, and who told the truth, all the way to President Roosevelt himself. Jan Karski passed away more than a decade ago. But today, I'm more proud to announce that this spring I will honor him with America's highest civilian honor - the Presidential Medal of Freedom."

My Report to the World: The Story of Jan Karski is written by Clark Young and Derek Goldman, and directed my Goldman. The play was originally conceived by the Laboratory for Global Performance and Politics at Georgetown in 2014 as part of the Karski Centennial Celebration, and an earlier version was presented in Warsaw at the opening of Museum of the History of Polish Jews.

"Karski's story reminds us that wherever people had the courage to speak up, lives were saved. It is no accident that Karski himself was such a passionate believer in the theater, as his life lends itself to what theater does best - bearing witness, bringing history alive, and moving us toward a deeply felt awareness of our world." - Director and Playwright, Derek Goldman

Presented in partnership with The Museum of Jewish Heritage - A Living Memorial to the Holocaust, Bisno Productions, The Laboratory for Global Performance and Politics at Georgetown University, the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, and the Jan Karski Educational Foundation, with promotional support from the Polish Cultural Institute New York.

DAVID STRATHAIRN (Karski) is well known for his performances in Good Night and Good Luck, Lincoln, Bourne films, as well as numerous plays on and off Broadway, at La Mama, CSC, Lincoln Center, The Public Theater, Symphony Space, MTC, and Soho Rep, to name a few. Most recently, Strathairn participated in a reading of with Theatre of War, a company of over 200 performers which presents reading of Sophocles' Ajax and Philoctetes to military and civilian communities across the world with the intention of forging a common vocabulary for the discussion of the impact of war on individuals, their families, and the community at large.

JAN KARSKI (1914-2000) was only 25 years old when he became the emissary of the Polish Underground State, and - based on his first-hand experience - reported on the annihilation of the Jews during WWII. His book about his experiences, Story of A Secret State, sold nearly a half millon copies when it was published in 1944. After the war, when the Communist takeover of Poland put his life at risk, he became a United States citizen. In 1952, he earned his PhD at Georgetown University and remained at Georgetown for four decades as a distinguished and beloved professor of government, choosing not to reveal his wartime experiences until agreeing to be interviewed for the documentary Shoah released in 1985. Today, Karski's story is only well known by historians and he has been recently referred to as "the bravest man no one knows."

DEREK GOLDMAN (Director, Playwright) is an award-winning director and playwright/adapter, producer, and developer of new work whose artistic work has been seen around the country and internationally, Off-Broadway, and at major regional theaters including Steppenwolf, Lincoln Center, Arena Stage, the Kennedy Center, Folger, CenterStage, Round House, Everyman, Synetic, Theater J, the Segal Center, Olney, Forum, and many others. He is Artistic Director of the Davis Performing Arts Center at Georgetown University where he is Professor of Theater and Performance Studies. With Ambassador Cynthia Schneider he is co-Founding Director of the Laboratory for Global Performance and Politics, and his engagement in this area has taken his work in recent years to the Sudan, China, Poland, Peru, Bulgaria, Armenia, Canada, and throughout the UK, and into collaborations with artists from Iraq, Pakistan, Belarus, Israel, South Africa, Afghanistan, Palestine, the Congo, Czechoslovakia, India, Serbia, among other places. He has been a Holocaust educator for over 2 decades collaborating with organizations such as Facing History & Ourselves, and with museums and centers through his work as writer/director of Right as Rain, Our Class with Theater J, the Holocaust Theater Archive, and others. He is the author of more than 30 professionally produced plays and adaptations and has directed over 80 productions.

Photo by Walter McBride

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